Tuesday, 22 November 2016

Jesse Jones and Her Violin

I feel a bit guilty about this - I've only just got round to reading The Strange Tale of Jesse Jones and the Violin, and I was given the copy (with accompanying CD) on the week of Brecon Jazz.
Jesse Jones herself, who has moved on from fiddle to saxophone, was playing at Baskerville Hall at the regular Wednesday night acoustic session. She'd come down to the area for Brecon Jazz.
And now I've finally read the story of how she became a musician - from a traumatic beginning in her school recorder group (which put her off music for years), to picking up a guitar, and after that, a violin. The book chronicles the difficulties of finding a suitable instrument, and a sympathetic teacher, in North Wales, and sees her attending music camps, and meeting a group to practice with, and learning bluegrass style fiddle and jazz. There are plenty of interesting characters she meets along the way, from Sid the music teacher to Carlo and Bruno the dodgy twins at the army camp where some of her musician friends live - and lots of musicians, many of them with good advice to Jesse to help her improve her playing.
And to really get the feeling of the music that's being described in the book, there is the CD, The Strange Tale by Outlaw Jones III - Jesse on fiddle, Jay Jones on guitar and mandolin, and Jimmi Jones on double bass and guitar. At different points in the book there are instructions to play a particular track from the album.
I enjoyed the story, and the music, especially the bluegrass version of Hen Wlad Fy Nhadau at the end.
The Strange Tale of Jesse Jones and the Violin is available on Kindle.

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