The Persistence of Dreaming is a suite of solo piano works performed by pianist and composer Jeremy Woolhouse. Reflecting the pedagogy of jazz in which he trained, the majority of compositions follow traditional jazz forms - arranged and composed themes providing a framework for improvisation. Comprising of twelve pieces written within a twelve month period, the album presents a cohesive work reflecting the artist’s temperament in a concise span of time. The resulting suite has thematic continuity and surprising diversity.
The subject matter revolves around the stark contrast between desires and reality. Themes of disillusionment parry with hope, and regret clashes with determination. A life of fantasy overlays a life of suffering, both vie to become the antagonist in an ongoing exploration into emotions, dreams and the indisputable truth of life’s challenge.
The language used has a dark characteristic, with contemporary harmonic progressions. Providing a balance to this are imaginative manipulations of very conventional harmonic forms of jazz. The moods range from gentle to fierce, reflective to animated, driving to relaxed. Flavours of contemporary jazz are utilised with fusion to South American and world music influences. The primacy of melody so characteristic of Jeremy’s compositions shines through in this suite as much as any of his ensemble work. Strong lyricism of composed and improvised aspect lend the work a universal appeal and sustains the listener through the polarities contained within.
Thoroughly engaging, the presentation takes the listener on a moving, evocative and memorable journey.