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BeatleJazz Trio: Another Bite of the Apple

The worth of a trio project like BeatleJazz, whose sole purpose is to strip Beatles songs of their yeah-yeah-yeahs and goo-goo-goo-joobs and dress them up in polite and pretty uptown jazz, is questionable. While the accompanying press release has drummer/producer Brian Melvin, pianist Dave Kikoski and bassist Charles Fambrough extolling the virtues of the Fab Four, the actual record does little to convince they were ever under Beatlemania’s spell.

Like the first BeatleJazz album (1999’s A Bite of the Apple), Another Bite of the Apple collects songs from all periods in the Beatles’ career, from a version of “It Won’t Be Long,” arranged reverently close to the original, to a reggae on “Let It Be.” The trio relies heavily on the Lennon-McCartney songbook but it does include a bouncy take on George Harrison’s “Blue Jay Way” and even the post-Beatles Harrison song “Give Me Love.” Poor Ringo.

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