Lynn Blessing: Sunset Painter

[9 March 2008]

By Jason MacNeil

This re-release of jazz/psychedelic maestro Lynn Blessing is a rather odd recording that has Blessing asking people to relax and take off their shoes. Generally though, it might be music you want to listen to if you are eager to revisit Woodstock, stoned out of your mind, or both. Blessing’s jazz talent is apparent and the hippie-meets-acid rock groove is in full force on “Cosmic Cowboy”. Meanwhile Blessing tones things down with the softer title track which attracts the listener. The same can be said for the equally light “Anacalypsis” and fun “‘Monk 136’” which recalls xylophonist Peter Appleyard. Although there are some songs that make you want to fall asleep (in a bad way), Blessing jazzes things up literally with the pretty ditty “An Awakening”. Probably the highlight here is how Blessing blends both styles during the roots-y but swinging “Country Pie”. But please, does one really need The Who’s “Pinball Wizard” on xylophone. I mean c’mon people! Overall though, this is a look back at some of Blessing’s finest work, work that had him playing alongside members of the Flying Burrito Brothers and Frank Zappa’s group.

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