Becky Archibald | Midnight At Monteton

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Midnight At Monteton

by Becky Archibald

Hot or cool, soulful or funky, reflective or spunky - many moods mark this French-inspired, fresh and exciting new jazz CD by composer/pianist Becky Archibald. Exquisite sax and guitar playing, engaging melodies and tasty surprises throughout.
Genre: Jazz: Contemporary Jazz
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Deux Chapeaux
6:45 $0.99
2. Once Is Not Enough
7:05 $0.99
3. Can't Let It Go
4:30 $0.99
4. Lullaby
6:37 $0.99
5. One-O-Four
5:34 $0.99
6. Lemonade
4:39 $0.99
7. If You Only Knew
6:36 $0.99
8. Midnight At Monteton
3:59 $0.99
9. le tour de Jack
5:29 $0.99
10. And Then There Were Two
6:36 $0.99
11. Bullet Proof Blues
4:12 $0.99
12. Never Alone
5:50 $0.99
13. Still Something to Say
4:24 $0.99
14. No Walk in the Park
3:02 $0.99
15. Anniversary Waltz
3:51 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
"A terrific, jazzy release! From ballads, to swing, to blues, Becky Archibald's first record with a jazz combo offers a different and welcome sound. Listen, and you'll agree: Once Is Not Enough."
Don Wolff, St. Louis radio host of I Love Jazz

Music composed and arranged by Becky Archibald

Jim Farrelly / saxophones, alto flute
P.J. Yinger / trumpet, flugelhorn
Mark Ortwein / bass clarinet
Sandy Williams / nylon and electric guitars
Becky Archibald / piano
Fred Withrow / acoustic bass
Jack Helsley / acoustic bass
Dave Murray / fretless bass
Steve Dokken / electric bass
Gene Markiewicz / drums
Kevin Kaiser / percussion

Produced by Becky Archibald and Jim Farrelly

In June of 2008, I had been writing music for about 10 years, with a focus on solo piano and chamber music, and produced 5 piano CDs. Listeners called my music “jazzy,” but with my classical training, there was still so much that I wanted to know regarding the art form. In July of 2008, my life and my writing began a transformation. Through a Creative Renewal Grant from the Arts Council of Indianapolis, I had the opportunity to study jazz at the Dordogne International Jazz Summer School (DJSS) in Monteton, France. I wanted to understand how people improvise together. I wanted to know how to read a jazz chart. And I wanted to write one myself.

One chart led to another, which led to the making of Midnight at Monteton, my first jazz CD. Co-produced with saxophonist Jim Farrelly, whose beauty of tone and expressive, soulful improvisations continues to astound me. The CD features members of the Farrelly/Markiewicz Jazz Quartet and other stellar players in Indianapolis.

Deux Chapeaux
One of my first charts – written in 2008 and inspired by my Monteton friend David Marlton, who showed me how cool bass clarinets can sound in jazz.

Written for my Grandma (Huween) Hart’s 90th birthday, in June of 2010.

What do you do on a scorching summer day when the temperature reaches 104? The intense heat wave of July, 2012 forced me to stay inside and write this hot Latin tune.

Life handed me a lemon, so I made this.

Once is Not Enough
Written in 2011 to celebrate the 10th anniversary of DJSS. While writing the tune earlier that year, I requested help on the title, describing the piece as having “kind of a Spanish/Latin/soulful vibe.” Ollie Haffenden offered, “If it’s the first of 2011, how about ‘Once’, which is Spanish for 11, and English for ‘once upon a time’?” I loved this, because there does seem to be a story in the piece.

Midnight at Monteton
Written July 21-25, 2008, during my first week at DJSS. Each day, around 60 international students, ages 15-82, studied, rehearsed and performed together. Late every night, I was back in a practice room, attempting to write my first jazz chart. We premiered the piece on July 25, as a dedication to all of my new friends at the workshop. With the working title, “It’s Silly, Really, But it’s Love,” it’s interesting that the piece took on more of a sad quality.

le tour de Jack
While at DJSS. Jack Yardley, then a 19-yr-old drummer from UK, asked me to write something for him. (I wrote one for his dad the year before.) I asked Jack to sing a beat, a rhythmic idea, into my recorder that I could use for inspiration. When I returned home and began working on the piece, the first thing I wrote on the page was the word “funky.”

Never Alone
So, I arrange a get-away to focus on writing. 3 days to myself. Alone in a chapel in Nashville, Tennessee. But no, it seems that, even though I need a key to get in, the rest of the world keeps barging in on me through a different door. (Mainly, loud wedding planners and brides-to-be. . .) Pretty frustrating, yet somehow, I managed to write this tender tune.

Piano Solos – Bonus Tracks

Still Something To Say
Written in September, 2010, for my dear friend Karen Hruby. Suffering from Alzheimer's, they told me she could no longer speak. But after communicating through squeezing my hand, tapping on my arm and singing along with me, the very soft words started to flow.

No Walk in the Park
Because it was just too icy cold that day in February, 2011.

Anniversary Waltz
Written for my parent’s 50th anniversary, June 11, 2009. It sounds very “classical” but was actually conceived utilizing jazz theory and harmony.

Becky Archibald is an award-winning pianist, composer, recording artist, and educator. Spanning solo piano to chamber music to jazz, Becky’s music has taken her far – from Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall (solo debut, 2006) to a California house concert playing Frank Sinatra’s piano, to the Dordogne Jazz Summer School (DJSS) in Monteton, France (composer-in-residence since 2009.) Known for her innovative programming, she produced “Fresh-Faced Jazz” for the Indianapolis Spirit and Place Festival, featuring jazz artists performing inner city children’s first musical compositions, and a live radio concert on WFYI’s “The Classical Connection,” featuring Archibald performing her compositions with members of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, along with a reading by award-winning author and classical music reviewer for the New Yorker Magazine, Alex Ross. With the Ronen Chamber Ensemble, Becky co-produces “The Rite of Swing,” an annual showcase of her work in both chamber music and jazz.

Becky was recently commissioned by the Central Indiana Community Foundation (CICF) to write a jazz composition for the celebration of the completion of the Indianapolis Cultural Trail, a world-class urban bike and pedestrian path that connects neighborhoods, Cultural Districts and entertainment amenities. Her “Cultural Trail Theme,” written for 12 instruments, including saxophone quartet, trumpet, piano, Latin percussion and ‘cycla-phone’ (an instrument she invented out of bike parts) was premiered on May 10, 2013, at the dedication and ribbon-cutting ceremony. Brian Payne, CICF president and founder/leader of the Indianapolis Cultural Trail, stated that commissioning Becky to write the theme “was one of the best decisions I’ve made in my 12 years at the foundation.”

An Anderson native, and a graduate of Anderson University, Becky holds a Master in Piano Performance from California State University at Long Beach. Her life took a new direction when she wrote a piano piece for her mom’s birthday in 1997—her first composition, Searching. Since then, Archibald has written over 200 compositions, and has released 5 piano CDs – Searching, The Long Ride Home, The Light at the End of the Blues, The Christmas One, and Mood Swing. Her music has been placed on cable and network television in the U.S., Canada and Mexico, and in countries overseas, including China, Japan, Hong Kong, France, Finland, Poland, Russia and the UK. Becky’s chamber music has been commissioned by the Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra, Ronen Chamber Ensemble and Kent Leslie, and has received premieres by The Ronen Chamber Ensemble, The Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra, Fishers Chamber Players, Butler University Composers’ Orchestra, and Alias Chamber Ensemble in Nashville, TN. She has written the score for a musical comedy, The Pied Piper of Hoboken, and music for the films Coming to My Senses and Robert Indiana: American Dreamer. She has been a guest artist at Butler University, Ball State, Depauw, Anderson, I.U.P.U.I and University of Indianapolis, the Indiana History Center, Indiana Landmarks, American Cabaret Theatre and The Jazz Kitchen.

Becky’s CDs have been played on radio stations around the country and overseas, including NPR’s All Things Considered and All Songs Considered. “Her music unfolds like I expect a good story to unfold,” says Bob Boilen, creator of ASC. The L.A. Jazz Scene describes Mood Swing, a mix of solos and chamber music, as “consistently intriguing.” Just Plain Folks, an international organization of independent musicians, selected The Long Ride Home as “Best Solo Instrumental Album” in their 2002 CD awards. And The Christmas One received a “Recording of Exceptional Merit” award in 2006 from Wisconsin Public Radio, WRST-FM. Becky also performs her piano/horn duet, “Bittersweet,” with Kent Leslie on his 2007 release, With Every Leaf a Miracle.

Another surprising turn in Becky’s career happened a few years ago . . . in France. Through a 2008 Creative Renewal Fellowship from the Arts Council of Indianapolis, Becky fulfilled a dream of immersing herself in jazz studies at the Dordogne Jazz Summer School in the village of Monteton, where she wrote and premiered her first chart, “Midnight at Monteton.” Returning home to Indiana, Archibald dove into a flurry of writing. Becky recently published three jazz songbooks of her French-inspired music, and, with Jim Farrelly as co-producer, she released a new jazz CD, Midnight at Monteton, in July, 2013. Becky is the 2009 recipient of the Outstanding Alumni in Music Award from Anderson University. She has also received grants from the Indiana Arts Commission, ASCAPlus, the Indianapolis Foundation and Central Indiana Community Foundation. Becky serves as Professor of Composition at Anderson University, and is a private teacher in Indianapolis. Becky also enjoys writing and telling stories about the creative process. Please visit her blogs at and



to write a review

Kathy Parsons

From MainlyPiano
"Midnight at Monteton" commemorates a transformative time in the life and creative output of pianist/composer Becky Archibald and is her sixth release to date. Archibald’s previous albums were often referred to “jazzy” (I’m sure I did!), but with her classical training, she felt there was still so much she wanted to know about the art form. The recipient of a Creative Renewal Grant from the Arts Council in Indianapolis in 2008, Archibald had the opportunity to study jazz at the Dordogne International Jazz Summer School (DJSS) in Monteton, France. Five years later, the fruits of that experience have manifested themselves in this very solid, “jazzy” CD. With an impressive band that includes sax, bass clarinet, bass, drums, brass, flute, guitars, and, of course, Archibald on piano, this music is bright, rhythmic, sometimes lyrical and smooth, and a joy to listen to. There is just enough structure to keep the music cohesive and melodic blended with feelings of freedom and spontaneity that are absolutely infectious. Three beautiful solo piano bonus tracks grace the end of the album after the twelve exceptional ensemble pieces. There is no filler on anywhere!

"Midnight at Monteton" begins with the playful “Deux Chapeaux,” which was inspired by a friend who showed Archibald how cool a bass clarinet can sound in jazz. Alto sax, piano, electric bass and drums round out the combo and create a smooth, breezy sound that I love. “Once is Not Enough” has more of a “Spanish/ Latin/ Soulful” vibe and features the outstanding sax playing of Jim Farrelly. A relaxed but compelling rhythm drives this piece and gives it a real groove. Great stuff! “Can’t Let It Go” kicks up the tempo to a danceable beat that never lags. “Lullaby” was written for Archibald’s grandmother’s 90th birthday, and is as soothing and peaceful as they come - gorgeous! “One-O-Four” refers to the outside temperature the day the piece was written. The strong Latin beat gets the soprano sax soaring while the guitar cools things down a bit. “Lemonade” is another favorite. Feel-good blues gets the toes tapping as tenor sax, flugelhorn, piano, bass, and drums find a slinky groove. Love it! “If You Only Knew” features Jim Farrelly on alto flute and Sandy Williams on guitars, creating feelings of ease and contentment as the hypnotic, swaying rhythm mesmerizes. “Bullet Proof Blues” again kicks up the tempo in the spirit of carefree fun with some musical pyrotechnics thrown in for good measure. I’ve always loved Archibald’s solo piano music, so the three solo bonus tracks are wonderful. A bit more classical than the ensemble music, it’s a beautiful mixture of musical genres that gives Archibald’s pieces a very distinctive sound.

Congratulations to Becky Archibald for pursuing a dream and making such wonderful new music with it! "Midnight at Monteton" is very highly recommended!