John Minnock pays homage to LGBTQ community with Dave Liebman-produced album Simplicity
Vocalist John Minnock reignites his artistic partnership with NEA Jazz Master Dave Liebman on his latest album Simplicity.
Following his critically acclaimed 2020 release Herring Cove, Minnock has assembled eight new original compositions along with renditions of familiar repertoire, arranged by Liebman.
Minnock assembled an intergenerational band of improvisers, including pianists Mathis Picard and Sean Mason, bassists Mark Lewandowski and Carlos Mena, and drummer Pablo Eluchans. Liebman plays saxophone and serves as the album’s executive producer.
“Every player brought their A-game to the session,” says Minnock. “We were relaxed and comfortable but collaborative and serious.”
With Simplicity, Minnock also pays homage to his beloved LGBTQ community. The second track He Was Brazilian displays Minnock’s stylistic range with its inspiration from bossa nova patterns and progressions. “There are so many similarly fun, flirty and sexy bossa nova songs, and now there’s one for the LGBTQ community,” he says. Meanwhile, Cape’s End details a longing lover’s pursuit of romance in Provincetown, Mass., a famous travel destination for the LGBTQ community.
Simplicity displays an evolution of Minnock’s artistry with nuanced storytelling, emotionally subtle vocal performances and harmonically sophisticated compositions.
“This record is about the music,” says Minnock. “Once you really get comfortable with jazz, it offers a level of freedom. You can go anywhere you want. The downs can go lower, the ups can go higher. So you have to get really comfortable, but then stick with the story.”