MICHAEL DOHERTY’S MUSIC LOG
Frank Kohl: “Solitude” – This has been an insane and troubling year, but now at long last we can relax a bit, knowing a great change is coming to our country in January. Jazz guitarist Frank Kohl offers some beautiful and comforting solo guitar pieces on his new album, Solitude, the perfect thing as we approach the colder and lonesome days of winter. There is warmth to his playing, and this being a solo album, it feels like the guitar is addressing us one-on-one, working to combat the loneliness many people feel this time of year, particularly this year with the pandemic. This disc features mostly original compositions, and opens with a pretty and soothing original number, “Dreams In Color.” And in “Solitude,” the album’s title track, Frank Kohl is reaching out a hand, or lending his shoulder. He also seems to be saying that much can be accomplished in those moments of solitude, that those moments have their usefulness, and so we should not despair. “A Call For Peace” is a track that feels completely in line with what Joe Biden had to say in his victory speech, to bring the country together again after four years of division. It’s going to be difficult, but this music makes it feel possible, doesn’t it? Another highlight is “Still Missing You,” which has a sweet and sad beauty, and fits with the album’s theme of solitude. There are also a few covers on this album, including a good rendition of Duke Ellington’s “I Got It Bad” that at times has an improvised feel, and a wonderful version of Oscar Peterson’s “City Lights.” This album was released on October 30, 2020.