Free Country II with David Binney

This is Joel Harrison’s second CD on the ACT label, a followup to his hugely successful Free Country release of 2003. Once again Harrison travels along the seams of Jazz, Country, Blues, and Spirituals, using country classics, hymns, and folk tunes as a gateway to creative music making. Harrison has included his own compositions on this release, side by side with gems by Merle Haggard, Jimmy Webb, the Stanley Brothers, as well as timeless traditional tunes. Harrison’s singular arranging style and the improvisational talents of his band create a dramatic atmosphere full of compositional surprises, gorgeous, moody textures, explosive soloing and quiet, intimate detail. (more…)

Reviews of Free Country One and Two

“Harrison suggests the music of the future.”
– Irish Times

“The most singular vision you are likely to encounter all year.”
– London Times

“Guitarist-singer Harrison describes his music as a trip “along the seams of jazz, country, blues and spirituals, using country classics, hymns and folk tunes as a gateway to creative music-making.” That’s an ambitious task, but he brings it off, with considerable help from saxophonist David Binney, in a collection filled with surprising, but utterly convincing, shifts of musical emphasis. Harrison is on to something both innovative and compelling, and he deserves a much wider hearing.” (more…)