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Jean-Luc Ponty

Jazz Rock/Fusion

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Jean-Luc Ponty Storytelling album cover
3.15 | 34 ratings | 2 reviews | 0% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

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Studio Album, released in 1989

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. In The Fast Lane (4:10)
2. Tender Memories (5:20)
3. Spring Spisode (5:52)
4. Pastoral Harmony (4:22)
5. Storyteller (4:26)
6. Amazon Forest (4:27)
7. After The Storm (4:20)
8. Journey's End (4:24)
9. Chopin Prelude No 20 {With Violin Improvisation} (2:59)

Total Time 40:20

Line-up / Musicians

- Jean-Luc Ponty / acoustic, electric & synth violins, Synclavier, keyboards (1,3), arrangements, orchestrations & producer

- Jamie Glaser / guitar
- Wally Minko / keyboards, piano
- Patrice Rushen / synthesizer solo (2,7)
- Clara Ponty / piano (9)
- Grover Washington, Jr. / soprano sax
- Baron Browne / bass
- Rayford Griffin / drums, electronic percussion
- Kurt Wortman / percussion (6)

Releases information

Artwork: Design FX

LP Columbia ‎- C 45252 (1989, US)

CD Columbia ‎- CK 45252 (1989, US)

Thanks to ivan_2068 for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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JEAN-LUC PONTY Storytelling ratings distribution

(34 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(0%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(44%)
Good, but non-essential (44%)
Collectors/fans only (12%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

JEAN-LUC PONTY Storytelling reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Guillermo
4 stars I bought this album in 1991, also as a low-price offer L.P., but now in a bookstore which also sells records (now it only sells CDs, not LP.s anymore). I wasn`t disappointed. I can say that I found a very good album, better that I expected. This is my favourite album (with "Live at Chene Park") of all the albums that I have listened from J.L Ponty. So good that years later I bought it again in the CD format. It is a very melodic album, very accessible, maybe a bit "pop jazz" in style, with very good recording.

In this album, Ponty also played and programmed some keyboards apart of playing the violins. He is again accompanied very well by Rayford Griffin (drums) and Baron Browne (bass), but the guitars (played by Jamie Glaser) again have a prominent place, and the keyboards (played by Wally Minko) now included more the use of pianos.

The album starts with "In the Fast Lane", with all keyboards played by Ponty. It is a "fast song", with a very good electric violin solo. The next song is "Tender Memories", one of my favourites, with good keyboards by Minko and Patrice Rushen and a soprano sax solo played by the late Grover Washington Jr. "Spring Episode" has keyboards played again only by Ponty. "Pastoral Harmony" is a peaceful song played with acoustic instruments, including a classical violin and a very good guitar solo. It is also one of my favourite songs of this album.

Side Two of the old L.P. starts with another "peaceful" song called "The Story Teller". The next song is called "The Amazon Forest", with percussion played by Kurt Worman and a good piano solo played by Minko. This song is followed by "After the Storm", which has a very "progressive" start with complicated scales and very good drums. Patrice Rushen plays a very good keyboard solo in this song.The next song, "A Journey`s End", is more Jazz-Rock in style in comparison to the previous songs of the album, more "heavy", and it is the best of this album, IMO. All the musicians shine in this song, particularly Minko playing a very good keyboard solo, and also very good drums by Griffin. The last song of this album, "Chopin Prelude No. 20 (with violin improvisation)" is played by Ponty with a classical violin acompanied in the piano by his daughter Clara Ponty (now she is also a professional musician releasing her own albums). It is maybe the less intersting song, IMO.

In conclusion: a very good album, very accessible, very melodic.

Review by fuxi
2 stars Everything about this album cries out '1989!' - those synclaviers, those echo-laden drums, those fake-orchestral keyboards, those tinkly chime-like keyboards... and the overall glossiness of the production, which extends to the ulta-starched appearance of the musicians in the band photographs. I once used to listen to STORYTELLING with pleasure but now, upon returning to it after an absence of many years, I find it almost unbearably slick - like the fuzak they play in downtown Tokyo shopping malls. Strictly speaking, the musicianship isn't too bad. Jean Luc Ponty performs his solos with gusto, occasionally swapping licks with guitarist Jamie Glaser and (on one track) with soprano sax player Grover Washington. But most of the compositions are so repetitive and so totally predictable that I cannot imagine why any newcomers would want to be introduced to them! Oh, I know, many of prog-fusion's most hallowed masterworks (Bruford's ONE OF A KIND, for example) feature keyboards that now sound outdated, but such music, at least, is full of surprises, and Allan Holdsworth's guitar solos take you deeper (or higher!) than most players. With Jean-Luc Ponty, however, the music is all smiles and no substance. To me, his final album track came as a relief: for once, all glossiness is left behind and Ponty (using acoustic violin, thank God) performs his own variations on a Chopin prelude, accompanied by his daughter Clara on piano.

Conclusion: if you want adventurous 1990s jazz that will sound enjoyable to people with a rock background, try Kenny Wheeler or Dave Holland. If you want truly progressive jazz-rock fusion, try Brand X, or the most recent albums by the Pat Metheny Group. Just avoid STORYTELLING.

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