Of course, yer man Sting has many jazzy connections (Branford Marsalis, etc. In fact, now that I come to think of it, he once even appeared on a Joe Henderson album). Lesser known, but probably more musically interesting, are Andy Summers’s excursions into jazz territory with albums like Peggy’s Blue Skylight and his Thelonious Monk tribute album. Really. Still, when you think of the Police, you tend to think of “Roxanne” and stadium rock at its loudest (and possibly best.)
Still, that’s not going to stop anyone. Here’s titian-haired pianist Lynne Arriale’s version of Wrapped Around Your Finger. Arriale takes a great deal of care in constructing the arrangements for her group, often subtly re-harmonizing tunes to give them a different feel. Listen to the quiet dissonances she throws in along the way. This is instantly recognizable as the pop song we all know, but there is a spooky, almost ethereal quality to it. During his solo, Randy Brecker’s trumpet quickly unshackles itself from the tune and spirals into crescendos of increasing intensity – it’s almost a relief when the familiar tune comes back in for the low-key ending.
For me this does not pack the emotional punch of last week’s entry, and I’m not sure it’s as successful a transition into a jazz idiom as some I’ve featured, but it’s still an interesting effort. I’d be interested to know what you think.