What's In A Good Melody? The Checkout asks Branford Marsalis and Kurt Elling

Sep 15, 2017

Is there such a thing as a good melody, in absolute terms? Branford Marsalis thinks so. The saxophonist joins singer Kurt Elling to share some of those from their recent album, Upward Spiral.


The two musicians spoke with The Checkout from the capital of Romania, shortly before going onstage at the 2017 Bucharest Jazz Festival. Despite their lack of sleep, they generously spent some time unpacking their intriguing choices from the album. It contains a couple of familiar jazz standards, but mostly features lesser-known Americana tunes — along with a song by the pop star Sting, whom Marsalis once toured with, and one Branford Marsalis original composition, for which Kurt Elling wrote original lyrics.

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