Vol. 1 no. 1
I first heard Lorne on the radio years ago; his debut trio recording produced by Oscar Peterson had been released, and everyone was talking about how incredible it was that a guitar player could even get close to sounding like the legendary Ed Bickert. Two years later he came to Montreal with Rob McConnell(of Boss Brass fame) and I found myself playing drums with this extremely talented musician. Many years have passed and whenever I get to Toronto I try to find out if Lorne is playing. Most recently I have heard him at George's Spaghetti House with saxophonist Kirk MacDonald, and the experience was memorable. All week long the young jazz students at the University of Toronto were checking out the band; the word had gotten around that it was one of those special gigs. Lorne plays the guitar as if it is an extension of his brain; he seems to have no limitations technically on the instrument. Sometimes you'll hear very lush, complex voicings, other times long rhythmically complex single-note lines. He plays his instrument in a very interactive way, always stimulating interplay amongst the musicians he is working with.
He can be heard on a fairly recent CD, on the Jazz Inspiration label, along with bassist Kieran Overs and drummer Bob McLaren, two longtime musical associates. There are also some guitar "duets" and "trios" thanks to the miracle of multitrack technology. Entitled simply Lorne Lofsky, the first track, All of You, makes it clear to the listener just what kind of talent is involved in this production. One can hear Lorne's influences: Bill Evans, Ed Bickert, Lennie Tristano, Lenny Breau. The way in which Lorne has combined these elements into a fresh and exciting style is obvious. Ironically, this process of maturation has gone pretty well unnoticed by the public and themedia, because Lorne performs infrequently in Toronto, and survives by teaching and occasionally substituting on electric bass. He is one incredible guitar player in a city of very good guitar players. Check him out if you have the chance.