“Havana” by Patricia Lazarra and Steve Markoff
“Havana” is the latest single release of the album Romance is Blue by stellar flute duo Patricia Lazarra and Steve Markoff, with some gorgeous piano backing from multiple Grammy nominee Allison Brewster Franzetti. Romance In Blue is their latest release since their cover of “You Raise Me Up” earlier this year and the 2019 album Timeless.
Romance in Blue is a return to fine form for the duo, not bogged down by covers which while good, don’t give the artists their due in terms of just how much talent they have in making their own original work. Most of the songs on Romance In Blue were commissioned and composed originally and I’d like to stress that is no easy feat considering that classical music is one of those things that is a tough nut to crack to rule stand out in a genre that’s already thought of as stiff. “You Raise Me Up” stood above being just elevated “Muzak”, there was a lot of soaring heart and thoughtful care put into it and the same can be applied here, but there’s a noticeable difference between doing something that’s been covered before and doing something unique for themselves.
I don’t think it was a “one for them, one for you” kind of rule, but I think playing it safe with familiarity to a more general crowd has certainly invited new fans as I know it did for me, but now hearing them do this original piece, well I’d go as far as to say I never want to hear them do another cover if every composition like “Havana” is as breathtaking as this one is. Winding and diving after a noticeably slow ambient start, for those unfamiliar, it’s not flashy, their music literally is just two flutes and the occasional piano accompaniment. It’s the kind of tour de force vision that goes such a long way and shows that an instrument is a tool that’s as powerful as the one wielding it, and the two work their magic like their flutes were Thor’s hammer. There’s a rich blending of styles ranging from the more jazzy elements to even some of the Cuban-inspired flairs that the track takes its namesake from. It’s always surprising you in one way or another and I highly recommend that upon first listen do it with headphones because you’ll really get a chance to hear every subtle note and nuance that way.
Franzetti’s powerful piano work is complemented by the stellar solo from Markoff in the middle and the whole track has this sense of importance thanks to Lazarra and her unparalleled abilities at this point. I want to see this group tackle all kinds of genres because of their talents you can hear on “Havana” because they’ve really found a way to give these subtle nods that if you’re a well-versed music listener you will instantly pick up but it has this wonderful universal quality to it that always makes it as warm as the beaches of its title.
The music of Steve Markoff and Patricia Lazzara has been heard all over the world in partnership with the radio plugging services offered by Musik and Film Radio Promotions Division. Learn more https://musikandfilm.com