Beyond the Missouri Sky

COMPOSERS: Charlie Haden,Ennio Morricone,Henry Mancini,Jim Webb,Josh Haden,Pat Metheny,Roy Acuff
ALBUM TITLE: Charlie Haden & Pat Metheny
PERFORMER: Charlie Haden (b); Pat Metheny (g)
CATALOGUE NO: 537 130-2


Charlie Haden and Pat Metheny have a form of musical schizophrenia in common. They are equally at home amid the structured chaos of free-blowing abstraction as they are in the nostalgia tinged ballad-land visited here. They have toured, played and recorded together in diverse contexts: famously with Ornette Coleman and recently in blistering hard-bop with Mike Brecker.

Given Haden’s (growing) susceptibility to sentimental reflection, however, this quiet collaboration has long been on the cards. In recent recordings, with his Quartet West band and alongside pianist Hank Jones, Haden has focused his slow, singing bass style on big-band tunes, film scores and spirituals remembered from the boyhood days when his family ran a radio station in Missouri.

But this is Metheny’s territory too – figuratively and literally. Metheny says his music is affected by memories of the vast mid-western spaces he grew up in. And, like Haden, he can bathe in melancholia without ever getting wet.


Here, Metheny augments his subtle virtuosity on acoustic guitar with added colours from synclavier and overdubs. Set beside Haden’s achingly clear voicing, the result is a match made in Missouri and bound for the best-seller lists. GB