|Playscape Recordings officially welcomes The Fonda/Stevens Group to its roster with the release of Memphis (PSR#033108), the eminent ensemble’s 11th recording. Only the fourth studio release in the band’s two-decade existence, it was recorded at the end of a week-long March 2008 U.S. tour.
The record takes its name from pianist Michael Jefry Stevens’ composition, "Memphis Ramble," one of ten tracks documented here for the first time. The subject matter of the piece, which features a spoken word section developed spontaneously during its first performance, deals with his move from Brooklyn to Memphis to be with his wife, who teaches poetry at Rhodes College.
Coincidentally, it was the poetry of the city’s name that appealed to Fonda. "When Mike suggested we call the record Memphis," he recalls, "I just liked the sound of the word—the poetry of it. And, Memphis is a musical melting pot, just like The Fonda/Stevens Group."