Mark Small: Please Thank Lyle Mays
Updated: Apr 17
Les Productions D’Oz: 8 pages
This American – born guitarist/composer has here written a eulogy to Jazz pianist Lyle Mays who passed away February 2020, and who was a founding member of the Pat Methany Group. The title refers to Pat’s particular way of thanking his band members, rather than the more usual ‘Please put your hands together for ….’
This one – movement work has a number of contrasting themes that do fall very neatly into the jazz style for much of the time. Set in an Allegro there are lots of off – beat rhythms and gently dissonant harmonies and usually two or three voices throughout, but whether he is writing in something approaching Pat Metheny’s style, someone else will have to say, because I confess to not knowing the great man’s music. The writing is intermediate for some of the time, and bordering on tricky, for some others, so this is definitely not for any player who isn’t completely happy going over the entire fingerboard from top to bottom.
This is a pleasant, undemanding, and yet very approachable little piece, that any lovers of this style will take great pleasure in trying.