Winnipeg Free Press Newspaper Archives May 26 2015, Page 20

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Winnipeg Free Press (Newspaper) - May 26, 2015, Winnipeg, Manitoba C M Y K PAGE C3 winnipegfreepress. com ENTERTAINMENT WINNIPEG FREE PRESS, TUESDAY, MAY 26, 2015 C 3 c ast): M Joan cus arcus ar Photos ( Broa oadway c Photos Br ...... .......... .. .................... .............. ........ ............................ .. .............................. .......... .............. ............................ THE STORY OF FRANKIE VALLI & THE FOUR SEASONS G UITAR savant Jesse Cook has mastered the art of storytelling without words. The instrumentalist says he is often jealous of singers because they are able to use lyrics to express themselves, but says he takes it as a challenge to make the melodies alone compelling enough to captivate an audience. “ I try to create a world of music that people can step into,” he says. “ They should be able to listen to the songs and live in them.” Born in Paris and raised in Toronto, Cook has travelled the globe to find inspiration for his music for more than two decades. For his 2003 album Nomad , he spent time in Cairo and recorded with Egyptian musicians. For Rhumba Foundation , Colombia provided the setting and inspiration. But for his newest album, One World , he took a different path, choosing to stick closer to home — “ pulling the focus back further” to include not just one specific locale or influence, but exploring how all types of world music can be connected. He credits the beginnings of the record’s creation to his young son, who, while playing around with a computer in Cook’s home studio, discovered some new functions of the program he uses to record. “ I had to leave the room while he was on there, I was so scared he’d blow stuff up,” Cook says with a laugh. “ I came back and he had some window open I’d never seen before, so I was like, ‘ Let me get in there and check this out.’” Cook began to explore and experiment with more electronic sounds, finding inspiration in the looping of different instruments. Though he had no intention of creating an album, the more he played with the new tones, the more he realized it was something he’d like to record. As the process continued, Cook says he became interested in mixing not only different types of world music, but time periods, melding the more modern, digitized sounds with those from ancient instruments, such as the Armenian duduk, which dates back more than 3,000 years. “ I wanted to bring in the other instruments too,” says Cook. “ The computer is a bit lacking in humanity — lacking the flawedness of human beings that makes things interesting.” For Cook, this recording process proved to be a bit of a reclusive activity. He wrote alone and produced the whole album in his home studio. “ It goes from one extreme — feeling isolated while working on the album — to the other end while I’m touring and surrounded by people all the time. It’s a strange, polarizing thing,” he says. Even though One World was only released last month, Cook is already dreaming up destinations for his next musical adventures. He says one of his next albums will be focused on India, partially because an odd Bollywood connection sparked his interest in the country’s music culture. His song, Mario Takes a Walk , was plagiarized in India and used in what turned out to be one of the highestgrossing Bollywood movies of the mid- 2000s, Dhuma Dhuma . The song was the title track for the movie and was incredibly successful, topping the Indian music charts for weeks. So successful, in fact, that the song was remixed a couple of more times for the film’s eventual sequels. Cook only found out about it because some overzealous fans from India posted on social media how much they loved his song in the movie. He watched a clip, and sure enough, there it was, soundtracking a giant dance number. “ I was incredibly honoured, to be honest, I loved it. I just wish they had called me to ask if they could use my music first!” Despite the casual way in which he speaks about the Bollywood plagiarism incident, Cook’s dedication and passion for his art is serious. He calls his guitar his “ lifelong companion,” and has spent years honing his skills, both being trained formally at numerous musical institutions — such as Canada’s Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto and the Berklee College of Music in Boston — and learning from other artists that he’s collaborated with around the world. He’s a realist. He knows the market for jazz and classical music in this country is not as broad as most other genres. He knows he will keep getting bypassed on the Junos red carpet in favour of the flavour- of- the- month pop star. But, he also knows it could be a lot more of a struggle. “ At least I get to walk on the red carpet,” he says half- jokingly, “ A lot of classical and jazz artists have to go in the back entrance. “ Those musicians are some of the best musicians in this country, but they are treated as second- class citizens in the industry. We should try harder to recognize all of our artists.” But, you won’t hear Cook complain about his position in the biz too much. “ Look, I’m a middle- aged man who plays the guitar, I’m just thrilled I can do this for a living and not have to drive a cab to support myself,” he says. “ I have the perfect level of fame. I can sell out theatres like the Burton Cummings or Massey Hall, I can support myself by making music and people generally don’t recognize me, so life stays pretty normal. It really doesn’t get any better than that.” erin. lebar@ freepress. mb. ca By Erin Lebar A new recipe for Cook Guitarist says son’s computer play inspired him to use new sounds Concert Preview Jesse Cook . Wednesday, 8 p. m. . Burton Cummings Theatre . Tickets $ 38-$ 58 at Ticketmaster ‘ It goes from one extreme — feeling isolated while working on the album — to the other end while I’m touring and surrounded by people all the time. It’s a strange, polarizing thing’ JOHN KENNEY / MONTREAL GAZETTE Cook says classical and jazz musicians are treated like second- class citizens by the Canadian music industry. LAS VEGAS — Two B. B. King heirs who’ve been most outspoken about the blues legend’s care in his final days are accusing his two closest aides of poisoning him. Las Vegas police homicide detectives are investigating, Lt. Ray Steiber said Monday. He declined to provide details. Daughters Karen Williams and Patty King allege that family members were prevented from visiting while King’s business manager, LaVerne Toney, and his personal assistant, Myron Johnson, hastened their father’s death. “ I believe my father was poisoned and that he was administered foreign substances,” Patty King and Williams say in identically worded sections of affidavits provided to The Associated Press by their lawyer, Larissa Drohobyczer. “ I believe my father was murdered,” they say. Toney worked for King for 39 years and had power- of- attorney over his affairs. “ They’ve been making allegations all along,” she said. “ What’s new?” Toney is named in King’s will as executor of an estate that according to court documents filed by lawyers for some of King’s heirs could total tens of millions of dollars. Johnson was at B. B. King’s bedside when he died May 14 in hospice care at home in Las Vegas at age 89. No family members were present. The allegations come days after a public viewing in Las Vegas drew more than 1,000 fans and mourners and a weekend family- and- friends memorial drew 350. A procession and memorial are scheduled today in Memphis, Tenn., followed by a Friday viewing and Saturday burial in King’s hometown of Indianola, Miss. Clark County coroner John Fudenberg said Monday the investigation shouldn’t delay King’s final trip home to the Mississippi Delta. Fudenberg said an autopsy was performed Sunday and King’s body was returned to a Las Vegas mortuary. Test results will take up to eight weeks to obtain, the coroner said, and should not be affected by the fact that King’s body had been embalmed. Drohobyczer said she represents Williams, Patty King and most of King’s nine other adult children and heirs. An affidavit from Patty King, who used to live at King’s home, says she saw Johnson administer to King two drops of an unknown substance on his tongue during evenings for several months before his death, and that Toney never told her what the substance was. Attorney Brent Bryson, representing King’s estate, called Drohobyczer’s claims ridiculous. “ I hope they have a factual basis that they can demonstrate for their defamatory and libellous allegations,” Bryson told AP. Three doctors determined that King was appropriately cared- for, Bryson said, and King received 24- hour care and monitoring by medical professionals “ up until the time that he peacefully passed away in his sleep.” “ This is extremely disrespectful to B. B. King,” Bryson said. “ He did not want invasive medical procedures.... These unfounded allegations have caused Mr. King to undergo an autopsy, which is exactly what he didn’t want.” — The Associated Press Police investigate claims B. B. King was poisoned By Ken Ritter C_ 03_ May- 26- 15_ FP_ 01. indd C3 5/ 25/ 15 5: 27: 55 PM

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