John Tennison Products
John Tennison's 1st BOOGIE WOOGIE Album: "Both Hands Like the Devil"
Available for Download on iTunes, Amazon.com, and CD Baby
Copyright 2004 by John Tennison. All rights reserved. Contains over 68 minutes of music! Release Date: December 31, 2004
Tracks: 1. Both Hands Like the Devil 2. Texarkana Train 3. Riding the Rods 4. Steam Engine Shop 1 5. Steam Engine Shop 2
Piano by John Tennison. Percussion by Alex Ornelas and Nonjohn. Recorded December 16, 2004. Liner Notes by Bill Scribner
John "Nonjohn" Tennison (A.K.A. the “Texarkana Train”) was born on September 16,
1968 in Texarkana, Texas. Texarkana is located in the Red River Valley in
Bowie County at the far northeastern corner of Texas. Texarkana is
surrounded by piney woods and swamp lands that encompass the geographical area
known as the “Arklatex.” The Arklatex is so named because it includes the
confluence of three states: Texas, Arkansas, and Louisiana. According to
historical accounts, the Texas portion of the Arklatex was the fertile ground
where the piano style we now know as "Boogie Woogie" was first played, and where
the term "Boogie Woogie" transitioned from being a term for dancing and sensual
behavior to also being a descriptor for the style of piano music we now know as
Consequently, Tennison’s exposure to and interest in Boogie Woogie is a direct consequence of his Texan Boogie Woogie heritage. Tennison plays Boogie Woogie as a form of daily yogic meditation directed by his spontaneous mental impulses. As a consequence, his Boogie Woogie performances are in the spirit of "free jazz," and are therefore improvisatory to the degree of not only improvising melody and rhythm, but also of improvising harmonic changes and meter.
The album title, "Both Hands Like the Devil," was inspired by a comment by Eubie Blake, who described piano player William Turk as having "a left hand like God."
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