Thursday, September 30, 2010

2 Sem. 2010 - Part Seven

Jason Moran

By Matt Collar
Jason Moran's 2010 effort Ten features more of the jazz pianist's smart and forward-thinking jazz. Backed by bassist Tarus Mateen and drummer Nasheet Waits, Moran reveals himself once again to be a nimble improviser with an ear toward atmospheric and often fractured hypnotic post-bop jazz on tracks like the lilting "Blue Blocks" (commissioned by the Philadelphia Museum of Art) and "RFK in the Land of Apartheid," along with ruminative numbers buoyed by the band's laid-back blues inflections and ever-so-subtle funk grooves. Other tracks, such as "Feedback Pt. 2" and "Old Babies," reveal Moran's more experimental edge, mixing sound effects and his son's voices with more straight-ahead jazz stylings that bring to mind both Thelonious Monk and Oscar Peterson. As always with Moran, there is a heavy classical influence, and compositions like his own "Pas de Deux — Lines Ballet" and his rambunctious take on Leonard Bernstein's "Big Stuff" do evince, much like the rest of Ten, both a romantic and modernist point of view.

Sérgio Santos
Litoral e Interior

By Leandro L. Rocha
O novo trabalho de Sérgio Santos,como os anteriores, mostra a música maravilhosa desse grande compositor(infelizmente pouco conhecido) que também é cantor,violonista e arranjador. Sérgio habita o mesmo plano de João Bosco,Dori Caymmi e poucos outros mais. O disco em questão tem as participações de músicos do primeiro time como: André Mehmari(piano,acordeon e arranjos),Rodolfo Stroeter e Zeca Assumpção (baixo), Tutty Moreno(bateria),Teco Cardoso(flauta,sax tenor), Jota Moraes(vibrafone) ,além de cordas em algumas faixas. A música "Litoral e Interior" que abre o CD é logo cativante com intervenções jazzísticas de Mehmari no piano e acordeon e uma arrasadora bateria de Tutty. Outras faixas que merecem destaque são: O mar adormece,que lembra uma peça do repertório da música clássica; Sombrinha Branca um frevo lindo em homenagem ao mestre Edu Lobo e também Lá vem chuva,Ciranda(ao gênio de Moacir Santos) e Batuíra onde brilham o sax tenor de Teco e o piano extraordinário de Mehmari. A maioria das letras é do craque Paulo Cesar Pinheiro e para encerrar o disco, Sérgio chama a cantora Mônica Salmaso para a bela Mar,montanha e sertão. Mônica é dotada de uma voz doce,suave e afinadíssima.
Todas as músicas de Sérgio Santos.

Jessica Williams

By Ken Dryden
Jessica Williams has amassed an impressive discography over her decades-long career, but as she entered her sixties, she began focusing more on solo piano. This is her second concert recording at The Triple Door in Seattle, a dinner theater with a majestic nine-foot Steinway D grand piano. Her touching, lyrical interpretation of "I Loves You, Porgy" (a favorite of Bill Evans) is full of rich voicings, while her thoughtful setting of John Coltrane's "Wise One" is reflected as a brooding lament. Williams' stunning performance of Charles Mingus' moving tribute to Lester Young, "Goodbye Pork Pie Hat," is accented by her skillful use of the pedal to accent the anguish within this jazz standard. Her originals also deserve strong praise. "Rosa Parks" is an understated ballad honoring the brave woman whose actions sparked the Montgomery bus boycott during the struggle for civil rights. Williams' dramatic ballad finale, "Simple Things," incorporates a bit of subtle humor. The audience recognized that they were in the presence of a jazz master that evening, remaining hushed throughout each selection, graciously allowing the final notes to fade before applauding. Williams' liner notes are an added bonus, explaining her approach to piano and the reason that some pianists sing along as they play, and openly admitting that she will stop midway into a piece during a performance if she feels it doesn't suit her on that occasion. Jessica Williams' Touch is destined to become not only a high point in her discography, but one for solo jazz piano as a whole.

Danilo Pérez

By John Barron
Inspired by the wonderment and challenge of contributing to a healthy future for his two daughters, Panamanian pianist Danilo Pérez presents an eleven-track suite of globally conscious music, fusing elements of jazz, classical and Latin American folk music. Providencia, Pérez's debut for Mack Avenue Records, is an ambitious project, incorporating his longtime trio-mates, bassist Ben Street and drummer Adam Cruz, with an eclectic cast of guest musicians. The result is a genre-defying foray into highly-structured compositions heightened by intense improvising.
A seamless melding of styles is evident on the lengthy opener "Daniela's Chronicles," a piece written for Pérez's eldest daughter that progresses through five buoyant movements. With a subdued undercurrent of rhythmic intensity, Pérez leads his band through the music with commanding control of the piano. Alto saxophonist Rudresh Mahanthappa brings a flurry of energy to "Galactic Panama," tossing solo lines back and forth with Pérez over an insatiable Latin-inspired groove, augmented by percussionists Jamey Haddad and Ernesto Diaz. Mahanthappa appears toward the end of the disc on "The Maze," a duet with Pérez in two parts. Here, the saxophonist is able to balance a harsh urgency with breathy lyricism.
Portugese-born, New York-based singer Sara Serpa, who specializes in wordless vocalizing, brings out the melodic strength in Pérez's writing. She floats effortlessly through the challenging theme of the title track. One of the more enticing tracks on the disc, Pérez takes advantage of the tune's melodic repetition to apply a countering barrage of piano showmanship. Another enduring moment from the session comes with the tender ballad "Irremediablemente Solo," composed by Panamanian composer Avelino Muñoz. The piece features the trio with bassist Street taking up the pensive melody with conviction.
As an organizer of the annual Panama Jazz Festival and the Fundación Danilo Pérez, an organization offering musical and cultural opportunities to disadvantaged youth, Pérez has become a musical ambassador for his native country. Homage to Panama is evident throughout Providencia, especially on the two-part "Bridge of Life," orchestrated for woodwind quintet and trio. The title refers to Panama's role as a land bridge between North and South America. With this disc, Pérez succeeds at creating a musical bridge between the intricate and visceral, inviting all listeners interested in forward thinking sounds.
Track Listing:
Daniela's Chronicles; Galactic Panama; Historia De Un Amor; Bridge of Life, Part I; Providencia; Irremediablemente Solo; The Oracle; Bridge of Life, Part II; The Maze: The Beginning; Cobilla; The Maze: The End.
Danilo Perez-piano; Ben Street-bass; Adam Cruz-drums, Steel Pans; Rudresh Mahanthappa-alto saxophone; Jamey Haddad-percussion; Ernesto Diaz-congas; Sara Serpa- vocals; Matt Marvuglio-Flute; Barbara Laffitte-Oboe; Amparo Edo Biol-French Horn; Margaret Phillips-Bassoon; Jose Benito Meza Torres-Clarinet.

Keith Jarrett
Testament: Paris/London

By Mark Corroto
For fans, music critics, and musicians, the music of pianist Keith Jarrett can be like a dopamine release in the brain. Like any pleasurable activity —sex, drugs, food—listening to Jarrett's music releases a neurotransmitter chemical in the brain that reinforces the pleasure systems of the body. Pick any spot in his nearly 50-year career and fans will tell you about their first encounter and the visceral response they had to his music. For this writer, it was Bop-Be (Impulse!, 1977), but for others, The Köln Concert (ECM, 1975), or, gulp, the marathon ten-LP (now six-CD) Sun Bear Concerts (ECM,1978) as their initiation into Jarrett's music. Along the length of his career, devotees continually search for that pleasure response they first had with Jarrett's music.
The two nights that make up Testament - Paris / London fire off large doses of brain chemicals, enough to satisfy the hardest, of hardcore fans.
The attraction here—and with all of Jarrett's original music—is his emotional effort. He is always able to convey feeling in his playing, from the fervid to the sentimental, the passionate to the giddy; or maybe, perhaps, those are just listener responses to his playing.
As explained in Jarrett's liner notes, his return to solo improvisation has come at the expense of some very important assets (his health and his wife), and that effort is evident across these three discs. Following the critically acclaimed concert recordings Radiance (ECM, 2005), from Japan in 2002, and The Carnegie Hall Concert (ECM, 2006), from New York in 2005, Testament excels in breadth of playing and range of passion.
Unlike the marathon pieces he attempted in the now-distant past, these tracks—all simply numbered and ranging from just under four minutes to nearly fourteen—are dense, consumable brilliance. Maybe the effects of the chronic fatigue syndrome are still with him, but these smaller blocks of improvisation clearly demonstrate Jarrett's enthusiasm for playing. He seems to be reacting more to the audience's response and presence, playing into the attendees' desire to make these shows a positive and supportive experience.
Jarrett's streams of consciousness include classical, jazz, free improvisation and touches of gospel. His physical playing—seated, standing, hovering face nearly touching keys—are all parts of this singular individual's expression of his soul, and, indeed, supplies plenty of those dopamine brain chemicals.
Track Listing: 
CD1 (Salle Pleyel, Paris: November 26, 2008): Part I; Part II; Part III; Part IV; Part V; Part VI; Part VII; Part VIII. 
CD2 (Royal Festival Hall, London: December 1, 2008): Part I; Part II; Part III; Part IV; Part V; Part VI. CD3 (Royal Festival Hall, London: December 1, 2008): Part VII; Part VIII; Part IX; Part X; Part XI; Part XII.
Personnel: Keith Jarrett - piano.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

2 Sem. 2010 - Part Six

McCoy Tyner
Solo - Live From San Francisco

Cover (Solo: Live from San Francisco:McCoy Tyner)

by Michael G. Nastos
McCoy Tyner has rarely been reliant on others, although his legendary co-dependency with John Coltrane yielded obvious spectacular and unforgettable results. The great pianist has been very favorably heard in a variety of settings, but it's been quite some time since he's released a solo album — the Blue Note label releases Reevaluations from 1988, Soliloquy done in 1991, or the 1991 Who's Who in Jazz set Live in Warsaw were all quite memorable. From the SF Jazz Festival's Spring Series in May of 2007, Tyner tackles the solo spotlight once again, as his talent rises, soars, and takes off while the program continues for some 50 minutes. All of the hallmarks of his sound, from up and down dynamics to the legendary crashing of chords, especially with his left hand, and the stunning virtuosity of his improvisational runs and streaks, assure you that he is in good spirits and has energy to burn off even at his advanced age. Tyner entered this performance with no preconceived set list, but it's clear a focused vision and sense of purpose serve him well as he mixes up these 11 standards and originals. Of his own works, "Just Feelin'" is Tyner's most revered in its bouncy construct, still fresh and alive even though the larger instrumentation of the original versions is stripped down here. "African Village" and "Blues for Jeff" are newer pieces, the former starting like "Footprints" before serving up constantly changing pacings and modal motifs, the latter a basic, straight-ahead, no-nonsense, upbeat, and rambling discourse. The peaceful, tender "Ballad for Aisha" and the bright, happy "Angelina" bring Tyner into a different, stoic space with that ever-present left hand undeniably potent. As many thousands of times as Tyner has done Coltrane's "Naima," he still seems to discover how to further refine it, and lovingly does so here. He takes diminished or arpeggiated nuances on "I Should Care" in no time with some stride inflections, fully extrapolates the basic structure of "Sweet & Lovely," and rips through a speedy version of Tadd Dameron's "Lady Bird" with a wildly inspired bridge. The obligatory Duke Ellington homage "In a Mellow Tone" closes the performance in a manner that starts out sounding like "Two Close for Comfort," a sly technique Tyner has magically wielded throughout his stellar career. This is yet another of the many triumphant recordings Tyner has given to the world, and though always challenging for any solo artist, he easily pulls it off with nary a hitch, much spirit, and a ton of soul.

Gene Harris Quartet
Live In London

Cover (Live in London:Gene Harris)

by Ken Dryden
Gene Harris recorded extensively from the time he came out of retirement to his untimely death in early 2000 (1933-2000) . This previously unissued concert, from 1996 at London's Pizza Express, features the pianist with a group of British musicians (guitarist Jim Mullen, bassist Andrew Clyendert, and drummer Martin Drew, the latter worked extensively with Oscar Peterson) who were chosen prior to his arrival in England. Though the musicians had not played together as a regular group, they gelled rather well as a unit. This hour-plus set starts with an invigorating, extended workout of "(There Is) No Greater Love." His jaunty, rollicking setting of Thelonious Monk's "Blue Monk" is bluesy and swinging. Harris changes gears to offer a subtle, lyrical, solo interpretation of "My Funny Valentine"; from there he segues into Duke Ellington's "In a Mellow Tone" and slowly builds it from a whisper to the boiling point. A shimmering "Misty" and a lively impromptu blues close this excellent set.

Nicki Parrott & Rossano Sportiello
Do It Again

Cover (Do It Again:Nicki Parrott)

By Bruce Klauber
Nicki Parrott is a rarity: a bassist who sings. And she does both very well. This is the second Arbors outing for this charming duo of her and pianist Rossano Sportiello. Parrott first came to the U.S. in 1994 from Australia via an arts grant, enabling her to study bass with Rufus Reid. From 2000 until Les Paul’s passing last year, she was the guitar legend’s Monday-night bassist at New York City’s Iridium. Her duties included supporting Paul musically and also trading funny repartee.
On bass, Parrott is an able improviser with a marvelous, innate sense of swing, heard to great advantage on Tommy Flanagan’s “Sea Changes” and on the little-heard—these days, anyway—“Idaho” by Jesse Stone. As a singer, she’s relatively straight-ahead, devoid of unnecessary effect; a more throaty combination of Blossom Dearie and Joanie Sommers. Her simplicity works well on Milton Drake’s “I Love the Way You’re Breaking My Heart,” “Do It Again” and several other chestnuts.
Italian-born Sportiello—he came to the U.S. permanently in 2007—is a rousing player who straddles the bop of Tommy Flanagan, the traditionalism of Teddy Wilson and even a bit of ragtime. Sportiello has named Barry Harris as his mentor, and like Harris, who has called Sportiello the best ragtime pianist ever, he’s clean as a whistle and never misses, no matter what the tempo. He even tries his hand at a vocal in tandem with Parrot on “Two Sleepy People.” A Vic Damone he’s not, but the duo works, and these two should do more of it. This is the type of timeless music that used to be heard at places like the Café Carlyle. It should be again

Marc Cary
Focus Trio Live 2009

Cover (Focus Trio Live 2009:Marc Cary)

by Michael G. Nastos
As brilliant a jazz pianist as Marc Cary has always been, he continues as an exploratory performer, seeking new avenues and vistas that challenge his adventuresome spirit. With his Focus Trio featuring bassist David Ewell and drummer Sameer Gupta, he seems to have found everything needed in order to complete his visionary quest. These live performances done in Colorado, Switzerland, and two cities in Italy (Rome and Fano) comprise some of his most exciting work, as well as carrying out the thoughtful, inventive characteristics that have marked him as a true individualist. There are adaptations of standards like his incredibly fresh treatment of the well-worn '''Round Midnight," done anew in modal ostinato trim, and exuberant hard bop such as his original waltz "Runnin' Out of Time" and the boiling, highly dramatic cover of Jackie McLean's "Minor March." As a quick thinker, Cary is able to transmit impulses to musical phrases with no hitches, but he also uses two-handed chiming effects à la McCoy Tyner, inside-the-piano string effects, and on occasion electric keyboards, too. The hyperkinetic "CD Changer" uses many short themes between acoustic and amplified keyboards and the contemporary, funky hip-hop attitude that has identified some of his other projects. Even ethnic East Indian raga with tabla (courtesy of Bismillah Khan) can be heard. This tour de force effort needs rapt attention to hear everything that is going on, but it's well worth the concentrated effort in appreciating true genius at work, as only Marc Cary can deliver it.

Dee Alexander
Wild Is The Wind

Cover (Wild is the Wind:Dee Alexander)

by Ken Dryden
Dee Alexander was a part of the Chicago jazz scene for some time prior to this outing, working with the late Malachi Thompson and recording a pair of CDs as a leader. Alexander has a fluid voice, good chops, and a flair for expression, especially in Thompson's Latin-flavored cooker "Surrender Your Love." She is backed by a potent rhythm section with bassist Harrison Bankhead, drummer Leon Joyce, Jr., and either Miguel de la Cerna or Mike Logan at the piano. Alexander's dramatic interpretation of Dimitri Tiomkin's "Wild Is the Wind" and emotional treatment of Nina Simone's "Four Women" show her flair for drama. But some of the original material doesn't hold up as well. The late Henry Huff penned several interesting melodies, though his weak lyrics handicap the singer. Alexander's lyrics are no better, as on the repetitious tribute to Huff "C U on the Other Side," though Logan's catchy vamp proves interesting. This is a good CD that would have been more memorable with a judicious selection of material.

Orrin Evans
Faith In Action

Cover (Faith in Action:Orrin Evans)

by Michael G. Nastos
Jazz pianist Orrin Evans has been knocking on the door of stardom in jazz for a full decade, but with Faith in Action, it seems he's really hit his stride. As a performer he's a more confident improviser willing to take chances, while also retaining a sweetness and lighthearted approach that reflects the romantic inside. These ten tracks are equally split compositionally between him and obvious mentor Bobby Watson, all in trio settings with bassist Luques Curtis and with drummer Nasheet Waits featured on seven tracks; Waits is replaced on two cuts by Gene Jackson and on another track by Rocky Bryant. How Evans plays in giddy highs or serene lows is impressive, with little gray area shown or needed. Tunes by Watson are quite well-known, but without horns are still full and rich. The title track was made famous by John Hicks simply as "Faith," a brilliant 6/8 in 4/4 organ of beauty as Evans digs into its ultimately pristine melody. Watson's most acclaimed composition when he was with Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers, "Wheel Within a Wheel" is spare but no less vibrant; "Appointment in Milano" is a modal two-fisted bopper where Evans goes a bit out and crazed; while "Love Remains" is an ultimate romantic, late-night, steamy piece built for intimacy. Evans wrote "Don't Call Me Wally" in a delightful funk to swing beat, deft but still lean; "MAT-Matt" is very combustible and spontaneous, stopping and starting back up; and "Why Not" closes in a easy swing unlike the rest. Summarily this is the most ambitious effort, and also one that shows the innate common sense of Orrin Evans. He is no longer emerging, but now established as a skilled and experienced young to middle-aged mainstream jazzman who should be around making great music for a long time.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

My Funny Valentine

Gerardo Barbosa Lima's TOP 10 Recordings of "My Funny Valentine"

Musician - Album

MILES DAVIS - In Concert
NARA LEÃO - These Foolish Things
JOHNNY MATHIS - Open Fire, Two Guitars
PAUL DESMOND - Desmond Blue
THE HI-LOS - The Hi-Los Back Again
RACHELLE FERRELL - First Instruments
FRED HERSCH TRIO - Dancing in the Dark
DIANNE REEVES - The Palo Alto Sessions 1981-1985
SARAH VAUGHAN - Live in Japan
SHIRLEY HORN - I Remember Miles

What is your favorite recordings of this great tune "My Funny Valentine" ? Leave your comment in this blog.

Qual suas versões favoritas desta bela musica ? Deixe sua lista nesta blog.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Gene Lees 1928 - 2010

Gene Lees

By PETER KEEPNEWS at The New York Times
Published: April 26, 2010
Gene Lees, a prolific jazz critic and historian who approached his subject with a journalist’s rigor and an insider’s understanding, died on Thursday at his home in Ojai, Calif. He was 82.
The apparent cause was a stroke, said Leslie A. Westbrook, a family spokeswoman.
The author of numerous books, Mr. Lees was not just an observer of the music scene, he was also a participant.
He was an accomplished lyricist whose credits included “Quiet Nights of Quiet Stars,” the English-language lyric for Antonio Carlos Jobim’s “Corcovado,” which was recorded by Frank Sinatra, Astrud Gilberto and many others. He was also a vocalist, with several albums to his credit.
That experience, and the friendships he built over the years with musicians, singers and songwriters, informed the project that had been his primary focus since 1981: publishing (monthly at first, later at irregular intervals) the subscription-only Gene Lees Ad Libitum Jazzletter, mostly as an outlet for his own biographical and historical essays.
“The beauty of this thing,” Mr. Lees said of his journal in an interview in The New York Times in 1987, “is that it has permitted me to write what I want to write, not what editors want me to write. And the beauty of it for the other contributors is that they’ve got total freedom. No money, but total freedom.”
The Jazzletter, published out of Mr. Lees’s house, carried no advertising, and its circulation was small, although it included readers whose names any jazz fan would recognize. He initially financed it with income from his book “The Modern Rhyming Dictionary”(Cherry Lane, 1981), and his book and songwriting income helped keep it going. Ms. Westbrook said Mr. Lees’s wife of 38 years, the former Janet Suttle, planned to continue publishing it.
Mr. Lees’s first two marriages ended in divorce. In addition to his wife, he is survived by a son from his second marriage, Philip; a sister, Victoria; and a brother, David. His sister Patricia died in 1990.
Mr. Lees had strong, often contentious opinions and expressed them forcefully. He was steadfast in his contempt for rock music, calling it “junk” produced by “illiterates.” He was equally outspoken on the delicate subject of race and jazz, acknowledging the vital role played by African-American musicians but resisting the notion that jazz was an exclusively black art form.
“It is of course insane to classify someone who is seven-eighths white as black,” he wrote of New Orleans in the early days of jazz in “Cats of Any Color: Jazz Black and White”(Oxford University Press, 1994), a collection of his Jazzletter essays. “It was a fiction by which white racists kept light Creoles in their place. It is a fiction by which black racists maintain the definition of jazz as ‘Negro music.’ “
Mr. Lees supported his strong opinions with strong research. At times that research took him far afield of his ostensible subject. The first chapter of another essay collection,“Singers and the Song” (Oxford, 1987), for example, was a history of the English language from the 10th century to the present.
Eugene Frederick John Lees was born on Feb. 8, 1928, in Hamilton, Ontario, the eldest of four children of an expatriate British couple, Harold Lees and the former Dorothy Flatman. After dropping out of the Ontario College of Art, he worked as a newspaper reporter in Canada before moving to Kentucky to become music editor of The Louisville Times in 1955. He was the editor of Down Beat magazine from 1959 to 1961 and went on to write about music for The New York Times and other publications.
In addition to seven collections of Jazzletter essays, Mr. Lees’s books include biographies of Woody Herman, Oscar Peterson, Johnny Mercer and the songwriting team Lerner and Loewe. He was also a co-writer of the composer Henry Mancini‘s autobiography and author of two novels. At the time of his death he was working on a biography of Artie Shaw.

From Wikipedia
Frederick Eugene John "Gene" Lees (February 8, 1928 – April 22, 2010) was a Canadian music critic, biographer, lyricist, and former journalist. Lees worked as a newspaper journalist in his native Canada before moving to the United States where he was a music critic and lyricist. His lyrics for Antonio Carlos Jobim's "Corcovado" (released as "Quiet Nights of Quiet Stars"), have been recorded by such notable singers as Frank Sinatra, Peggy Lee, Queen Latifah, and Diana Krall. Lees married Janet, his wife, in 1971.
Lees was the eldest of four children born to Harold Lees, a violinist, and Dorothy Flatman. His sister, Victoria Lees, is the former Secretary General of Montreal's McGill University, and his brother, David Lees, is an investigative journalist and science writer.
Beginning his writing career as a newspaper reporter in his native Canada, between 1948 and 1955 Lees contributed to The Hamilton Spectator, the Toronto Telegram, and the Montreal Star, and first worked as a music critic in the United States for the Louisville (Kentucky) Times between 1955 and 1959 and was editor of the jazz magazine Down Beat between 1959 and 1962.
As a freelance writer, Lees wrote for the American high fidelity magazines Stereo Review and High Fidelity (often using his column to defend jazz and older popular music while blasting "that rock junk"), the Canadian magazine Maclean's, the Toronto Star, the Toronto Globe and Mail, and The New York Times.
Lees wrote nearly one hundred liner notes for artists as diverse as Stan Getz, John Coltrane, and Quincy Jones. His first novel And Sleep Until Noon was published in 1967. The second, "Song Lake Summer" was published in 2008.
Lees won the first of five ASCAP-Deems Taylor Awards in 1978 for a series of articles published in High Fidelity about US music. Lees' famous monthly Jazzletter was established in 1981, and contains musical criticism by Lees and others.
Lees wrote a rhyming dictionary in the 1980s, and published three compilations of pieces from his Jazzletter: Singers and the Song (1987), Meet Me at Jim & Andy's (1988), and Waiting for Dizzy (1991). As a biographer, Lees has written about Oscar Peterson, the partnership of Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Loewe, Woody Herman, and collaborated with Henry Mancini on Mancini's autobiography. Lees wrote about racism in jazz music in Cats of Any Color: Jazz Black and White and on the effect of racism on the careers of Dizzy Gillespie, Clark Terry, Milt Jackson and Nat King Cole in You Can't Steal a Gift: Dizzy, Clark, Milt and Nat. Friends Along the Way: A Journey Through Jazz, a memoir, was published in 2003.
Lees studied composition by correspondence with the Berklee College of Music, in the early 1960s and piano with Tony Aless and guitar with Oscar Castro-Neves in New York City. Lees became a lyricist in the 1960s, writing many of the English language lyrics for Bossa Nova songs, translating them from their original Portuguese. Lees wrote the lyrics for the Antonio Carlos Jobim songs; "Quiet Nights of Quiet Stars", "Someone to Light Up My Life", "Song of the Jet", "This Happy Madness" and "Dreamer". "Quiet Nights of Quiet Stars" (originally "Corcovado") has been recorded by many artists, artists as diverse as Frank Sinatra and Queen Latifah. "Quiet Nights" was Lees' first professional lyric, written on a bus going to Belo Horizonte, while Lees was on a United States State Department tour of South America with the Paul Winter Sextet, in 1961. Sinatra recorded four songs by Jobim with lyrics by Lees, Sinatra's recording of "Quiet Nights" (from Francis Albert Sinatra & Antonio Carlos Jobim, 1967), is considered by Lees to be definitive. Lees also wrote the lyics for Charles Aznavour's, "Paris Is at Her Best in May" and "Venice Blue", and Aznavour's 1965 Broadway concert, The World of Charles Aznavour. Lees contributed lyrics to "Bridges" by Milton Nascimento; "Yesterday I Heard the Rain" by Armando Manzanero; and Bill Evans' "Waltz for Debby". Poems by Pope John Paul II were translated by Lees and recorded by Sarah Vaughan as the song cycle One World, One Peace in 1985.
Lees briefly returned to Canada in the early 1970s and recorded the LP Bridges: Gene Lees Sings the Gene Lees Songbook on Kanata Records, a Toronto company of which he became president from 1971 to 1974. Lees briefly had his own late-night CBC TV show in 1971, appeared as a commentator or singer on other CBC Toronto and Ottawa TV and radio series, and was host 1973–4 for Toronto radio station CKFM-FM's Gene Lees and Friends. Lees released a second album in 1998, Gene Lees Sings Gene Lees and recorded Leaves on the Water with pianist Roger Kellaway, and a third "Yesterday I Heard The Rain" with a group of jazz all-stars led by Don Thompson.
Lees had struggled with heart disease in his later years, and died on April 22, 2010 at his home in Ojai, California. Lees wife, Janet, was present at his death.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

TOP 10 Underrated Jazz Musicians

Steve Kuhn

by Scott Yanow
Steve Kuhn has had an interesting career. A talented jazz pianist, he has worked in many types of settings through the years. He began classical piano lessons when he was five, studied with
Madame Chaloff, and accompanied her son, baritonist Serge Chaloff, on some gigs when the pianist was 14. He freelanced in Boston as a teenager, graduated from Harvard, and moved to New York where he worked with Kenny Dorham's group (1959-1960). Kuhn was the original pianist in John Coltrane's Quartet, playing for two months before McCoy Tyner succeeded him. He was with the bands of Stan Getz (1961-1963) and Art Farmer (1964-1966), lived in Europe (1967-1970), and then returned to the U.S. in 1971. Kuhn doubled on electric piano in the 1970s, recorded for ECM, and co-led a group with Sheila Jordan in the latter part of the decade. After a period playing commercial music, he formed an acoustic trio in the mid-'80s, which has been his main vehicle ever since. Steve Kuhn has recorded as a leader for Impulse (1966), Contact, MPS, BYG, Muse, ECM, Blackhawk, New World, Owl, Concord, and Postcards.

Mark Murphy

by John Bush
Mark Murphy often seemed to be the only true jazz singer of his generation. A young, hip post-bop vocalist, Murphy spent most of his career sticking to the standards — and often presented radically reworked versions of those standards while many submitted to the lure of the lounge singer — during the artistically fallow period of the 1970s and '80s. Marketed as a teen idol by Capitol during the mid-'50s, Murphy deserted the stolid world of commercial pop for a series of exciting dates on independent labels that featured the singer investigating his wide interests:
Jack Kerouac, Brazilian music, songbook recordings, vocalese, and hard bop, among others.He grew up near Syracuse, NY, born into an intensely musical family (both parents sang). Mark began playing piano as a child, and studied both voice and theater while at college. He toured through Canada with a jazz trio for a time and spent awhile back home before he moved to New York in early 1954. A few television appearances gained him a contract for Decca Records, and he debuted with 1956's Meet Mark Murphy. He released one more LP for Decca before signing to Capitol in 1959. Though label executives often forced material (and an excessively clean-cut image) on the young singer, he managed to distinguish himself with good sets of standards, musical accompaniment furnished by West Coast jazz regulars, and a distinctive vocal style that often twisted lines and indulged in brief scatting to display his jazz credentials.He eventually released four LPs for Capitol, but never reached popular audiences the way the label intended. In 1961, Murphy recorded his first album for Riverside, a set of standards and bop vocals named Rah! that gave a first glimpse at his ambition. Though the twentysomething Murphy seemed a little young for a saloon-song chestnut like "Angel Eyes," he performed quite well on side two, styled after a Lambert, Hendricks & Ross LP with vocal covers of bop standards including "Milestones" and Annie Ross' "Twisted." It and its follow-up, the themed LP That's How I Love the Blues, included a top-notch backing group including jazz heroes such as Clark Terry, Snooky Young, Al Cohn, Bill Evans, and Blue Mitchell. The records also displayed Murphy's penchant for trawling the entirety of the 20th century popular/jazz repertory for songs ranging from the slightly overdone to the downright forgotten.By the mid-'60s, Murphy had begun to recognize his sizable European fan base. Along with scores of American expatriates, he spent many years in Europe and didn't even issue his LPs in America during the rest of the '60s. Instead, he recorded LPs for British labels including Fontana and Immediate (the latter run by Rolling Stones manager Andrew Loog Oldham). Murphy also collaborated with the Clarke-Boland Big Band for 1967's Midnight Mood. His frequent nightclub performances and intimate stage presence also earned rave reviews from jazz and vocal critics. By the time of his return to America in the early '70s, Murphy had become a major name in vocal jazz.With a contract from Muse in hand, Murphy began recording what would become close to two dozen albums for the label, ranging from earthy '70s dates with the Brecker brothers to Jack Kerouac tributes complete with spoken word readings to a two-volume Nat King Cole Songbook series. During that period, Murphy was one of the only straight jazz vocalists (other than old-guard names like Sinatra and Tormé) to actually make a living out of his craft. He toured relentlessly as well, and remained as hip a name to drop in 1999 as he was in 1959. Since the '90s, Murphy has released a handful of albums including Some Time Ago in 2000, Memories of You in 2003, and Love Is What Stays in 2007.

John Clayton

by Scott Yanow
A multi-talented musician, John Clayton deserves much more recognition. A brilliant bassist whose bowed solos are exquisite, Clayton is also a top-notch arranger and composer. A protégé of
Ray Brown (whom he recorded with on a couple of occasions, including a late-'90s collaboration with fellow bassist Christian McBride), Clayton picked up important early experience playing with Count Basie's Orchestra for two years. He has co-led the Clayton Brothers with his younger brother, altoist Jeff, off and on since 1977, and in 1985 put together the Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra, along with Jeff Clayton and drummer Jeff Hamilton. Clayton's charts for the big band, which are sometimes a little reminiscent of Thad Jones, give it its own musical personality. John Clayton has also worked extensively as a freelance bassist and arranger.

Larry Grenadier

Larry Grenadier (born February 6, 1966 in San Francisco, California) is a jazz double bassist.
His father, Albert, was a trumpet player, and his two brothers, Phil and Steve, would eventually play trumpet and guitar respectively. Grenadier too began on
trumpet when he was 10 years old. His father taught him to read music and gave him his first lessons. A year afterward, when Larry Grenadier was eleven, he was given an electric bass guitar so that he and his brothers could play together as a band. He took a quick liking to the instrument, playing and practicing constantly. The three brothers performed current rock songs of the day at parties by learning the parts off of records. Larry’s older brother Phil began listening to jazz around this time, and slowly his listening habits filtered down to the younger brothers. Grenadier soon got hooked on jazz as well and began listening intently to jazz bassists like Ray Brown, Charles Mingus, Paul Chambers and Oscar Pettiford.
Hearing legendary upright bassists inspired Grenadier to borrow an
upright bass and try to emulate what he was hearing on records. By the time he was 12, Grenadier began formal study of the acoustic bass, studying with local jazz bass players Paul Breslin and Frank Tusa and later classical bassists Michael Burr and Steven Tromontozzi. At 16, Grenadier had a busy career playing in the San Francisco area with both local musicians and those traveling through town in need of a bass player. Some of these musicians included Bobby Hutcherson, Joe Henderson, Larry Vuckovitch, Eddie Henderson, Bruce Forman, Eddie Marshall, Vince Lateano, George Cables and Donald Bailey. Other visiting musicians Grenadier played with at this time were Toots Thielmans, Johnny Griffin, Charles McPherson, Anita O'Day, and Frank Morgan. Grenadier went on to study at Stanford University and graduated in 1989 with a bachelor's degree in English Literature. At Stanford, Grenadier got to know Stan Getz, who was the Artist in residence there at the time. He played with Getz often, as well as touring with Getz's band.
high school graduation, Grenadier moved to Boston to play with Gary Burton. Grenadier toured all over the world with Burton and his band, which at that time included Wolfgang Muthspiel, and Marty Richards. In 1991, Grenadier moved to New York and began musical associations with a wide variety of musicians. Some of these included musicians Larry had met during his time in Boston and included talents such as Joshua Redman, Kurt Rosenwinkel, Jorge Rossy, Mark Turner, and Chris Cheek. Others he met for the first time in New York such as Kevin Hays, Bill Stewart, Renee Rosnes, Ralph Moore, Billy Drummond, Danilo Perez, David Sánchez, Tom Harrell and Billy Hart. Grenadier continued his association with Joe Henderson touring with his band which at times included Al Foster, Renee Rosnes and Larry Willis. Grenadier also spent a few months during his earlier years in New York playing in Betty Carter's band.
In the early 1990s, Grenadier first met and played with pianist
Brad Mehldau. Mehldau's trio (including Grenadier and Jorge Rossy) went on to become one of the major groups of the time. This band allowed Larry the perfect environment in which to grow as a musician. The trio had come together out of mutual empathy and shared musical ideals. They toured constantly throughout the 1990s and recorded many albums together.
Also during this time Grenadier played in
John Scofield's band and with Pat Metheny with whom he spent a few years touring. Guitarist Metheny, Grenadier, and completing the trio was drummer, Bill Stewart. Grenadier credits his experiences touring with Metheny's trio as a significant learning experience.[1] Other musicians Grenadier played with included Charles Lloyd, Billy Higgins, Michael Brecker, and Paul Motian.
Currently, Grenadier focuses much of his touring time playing with Brad Mehldau's trio, which, since 2004, has included drummer
Jeff Ballard. He is also a part of the collaborative trio FLY which includes drummer Ballard and tenor saxophonist Mark Turner. They have recorded two critically acclaimed albums, the latest one being on the ECM label. Grenadier also tours and records with his wife, singer-songwriter Rebecca Martin, with whom he has found a rare personal and musical kinship.
Grenadier lives with Rebecca and their son Charlie James in the Hudson Valley north of New York City.

Joe LaBarbera

by Scott Yanow
Joe La Barbera is best-known for being part of
Bill Evans' last trio (1978-1980) along with bassist Marc Johnson but he has remained greatly in-demand up to the present time. The younger brother of tenor saxophonist Pat La Barbera and arranger-trumpeter John La Barbera, Joe was originally taught drums by his father Joseph La Barbera before studying with Alan Dawson during his period at Berklee (1966-1968). La Barbera toured with singer Frankie Randall, spent two years in the Army, toured with Woody Herman's Big Band and then was with Chuck Mangione's very popular band (1973-1977). After a period freelancing in New York, La Barbera toured the world with Bill Evans, making many recordings as part of one of the pianist's finest groups. The drummer's tasteful and stimulating playing inspired both Evans and Johnson. After the pianist's death, La Barbera toured with Tony Bennett and then settled in Los Angeles. During the '80s and 90s, he worked steadily in a countless number of situations, becoming a fixture in Los Angeles area clubs and occasionally leading his own quintet. Joe La Barbera has appeared on scores of recordings where his subtle yet swinging style uplifts every session.

Makoto Ozone

by Ron Wynn
A premier jazz musician in Japan, Makoto Ozone has made a successful transition to America, where he became equally prominent in this nation's improvisational community. He began on organ at four, then took up piano as a teenager. He went to Berklee in 1980 and studied composing and arranging. He was noticed by
Gary Burton and later recorded with him and was part of his band. Ozone's striking ability (especially on mid-tempo pieces) and impressive technique made him a big hit at the Kool Jazz Festival. His 1984 debut recording featured Burton and bassist Eddie Gomez. It was a stunning example of complete knowledge and mastery of the full jazz piano spectrum. Ozone later worked with European pianist Michel Petrucciani and spent extensive time studying classical music.

Bill Mays

by Scott Yanow
A fine pianist, Bill Mays has often worked behind the scenes, leading to him being a somewhat overlooked jazz improviser. Mays worked in Los Angeles as a studio musician from the late '60s on, accompanying
Sarah Vaughan (1972-1973) and Al Jarreau (1975), but mostly doing session work. In the early '80s, he began to record jazz as a sideman with Howard Roberts, Bud Shank, Bobby Shew, Road Work Ahead, and Mark Murphy. He recorded a duet date with Red Mitchell for ITI (1982) and led a quintet album for Trend (1983). In 1984, Mays moved to New York and since then he has worked with Murphy, Gerry Mulligan, Ron Carter, James Moody, Sonny Stitt, Art Pepper, and the Mel Lewis Orchestra, among others. In the late 80's Mays recorded for DMP (duet records with Ray Drummond) and in 1992 released several discs on Concord. These dates found Mays in a variety of settings, beginning with the unaccompanied Live at Maybeck Recital Hall, Vol. 26 (Bill Mays at Maybeck), followed by a trio date An Ellington Affair, a duet with guitarist Ed Bickett Concord Duo, Vol. 7: Bill Mays and Ed Bickert and finallly backed by a full band on Mays in Manhattan. In 2001 the pianist recorded his 11th album as a leader and his first for the Palmetto label, Summer Sketches, followed two years later by Going Home.

Mulgrew Miller

by Scott Yanow
An excellent pianist who plays in a style influenced by
McCoy Tyner, Mulgrew Miller has been quite consistent throughout his career. He was with Mercer Ellington's big band in the late '70s and had important stints with Betty Carter (1980), Woody Shaw (1981-1983), and Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers (1983-1986). For a long period, he was a member of the Tony Williams Quintet (1986-1994). In addition, Mulgrew Miller has led his own sessions for Landmark (starting in 1985), Novus and MaxJazz.

Sheila Jordan

by Scott Yanow
One of the most consistently creative of all jazz singers, Sheila Jordan has a relatively small voice, but has done the maximum with her instrument. She is one of the few vocalists who can improvise logical lyrics (which often rhyme), she is a superb scat singer, and is also an emotional interpreter of ballads. Yet despite her talents, Jordan spent much of the 1960s and '70s working at a conventional day job. She studied piano when she was 11 and early on, sang vocalese in a vocal group. Jordan moved to New York in the 1950s, was married to
Duke Jordan (1952-62), studied with Lennie Tristano, and worked in New York clubs. George Russell used her on an unusual recording of "You Are My Sunshine" and she became one of the few singers to lead her own Blue Note album (1962). However, it would be a decade before she appeared on records again, working with Carla Bley, Roswell Rudd, and co-leading a group with Steve Kuhn in the late '70s. Jordan recorded a memorable duet album with bassist Arild Andersen for SteepleChase in 1977, and has since teamed up with bassist Harvie Swartz on many occasions. By the 1980s, Sheila Jordan was finally performing jazz on a full-time basis and gaining the recognition she deserved 20 years earlier. She recorded as a leader (in addition to the Blue Note session) for East Wind, Grapevine, SteepleChase, Palo Alto, Blackhawk, and Muse, resurfacing in 1999 with Jazz Child.

Freddy Cole

by Alex Henderson
The younger brother of
Nat King Cole and uncle of Natalie Cole, singer/pianist Freddy Cole sounds a great deal like his celebrated sibling, yet has a personality of his own. Cole, whose vocals tend to be a bit darker and slightly rougher, began playing piano at five or six. He was interested in playing football professionally, but decided to pursue a career in music after a hand injury ended his career as an athlete. Cole debuted on vinyl in 1952, when he recorded the single "The Joke's on Me" for the obscure Chicago-based Topper Records. His next single, "Whispering Grass" on Columbia's OKeh label, was a moderate hit in 1953. In the '60s and '70s, he developed a small following recording for various small labels. Cole founded his First Shot label in the '80s and went on to record for Sunnyside and LaserLight in the early '90s. A few years later, he signed with Fantasy and enjoyed greater visibility with Grand Freddy. By 2000, Cole had signed with Telarc and released his first disc for the label, Merry-Go-Round, followed by Rio de Janeiro Blue in 2001. In the Name of Love appeared two years later featuring Cole's approach to soft pop hits made famous by Smokey Robinson, Bonnie Raitt, and Van Morrison among others. In 2004 GRP reissued Cole's 1964 recording Waiter, Ask the Man to Play the Blues. It was followed in 2005 by This Love of Mine, in 2006 by Because of You, and in 2010 by Freddy Cole Sings Mr. B, all on the Highnote label.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

2 Sem. 2010 - Part Five

Quartetto Trevi
Night Walk

By Leonardo Barroso
Italy is the new home for Jazz. Everytime you blink, there's a new jazz musician with high caliber improvisation and soul. Quartetto Trevi's new CD works with original songs and brings Max Ionata as a special guest. Recommended.

By Dusty Groove America
The most spiritual session we've heard in this recent great run from the Deja Vu label – a set that's filled with Impulse Records-like energy – including lots of modal moments and spiritual solos! The lineup features Max Ionata on tenor sax – a player we don't know at all, but one who really has a great way of blowing these bold, well-formed lines – certainly with a touch of Coltrane in the mix, but very much his own player too. The great Roberto Tarenzi is on piano – playing these wonderful rhythms that almost top his own album on Deja Vu – and other players include Dario Rosciglione on bass and Marcello Di Leonardo on drums. Titles include "Mental Telepathy", "Greensleeves", "Trevi's Theme", "Boom Jackie Boom Chick", "Bolivia", and "Night Walk".

Renato Sellani meets Gianluca Petrella
There's No Greater Love

By Leonardo Barroso
I've always thought Renato Sellani as a Hank Jones from Italy. He has soft/slow piano touch, that doesn't make me a fan.
But he brought Gianluca Petrella, Italy trombone jazz star, and boosted Sellani's playing, making this CD, my favorite among Renato Sellani Cd's. A must have !!!

By Ken Dryden
Renato Sellani is joined by trombonist Gianluca Petrella during a marathon session which also produced the Philology CD Just Friends. Their explorations of standards from the 1940s and 1950s are enjoyable, particularly the up-tempo quartet arrangements like "Autumn Leaves," and the brash but fun chart of "I'm Getting Sentimental Over You." Sellani's spacious scoring adds to the bittersweet flavor of Jerome Kern's "Yesterdays." Their sassy original, "Blues in B Flat," showcases Petrella's playful mute technique. Less successful is the overly drawn out arrangement of "Laura," which stretches Petrella a bit beyond his capabilities. Like its companion CD, the final selection, "(There is) No Greater Love," is taken from a 2002 duo concert, which finds both musicians in top form. Recommended

Kenny Barron
Live At Fat Tuesdays

By Leonardo Barroso
When I bought this CD there was no mention it was from 1988. Well it was a big surprise. Kenny Barron is one of favorite jazz musicians and at this time he was in very good shape. The only problem for me, is that ther's too much people. A good CD. 

By Ron Wynn
Barron stretches out and plays both flashy and easy, hot and cool, on this 1988 set cut at Fat Tuesday's in New York. Bassist Cecil McBee and drummer Victor Lewis drives the rhythms a bit harder than the Riley/Drummond team, while Eddie Henderson and John Stubblefield on trumpet and tenor sax add some welcome intensity and contrasting solo voices.

Yuri Goloubev
Metafore Semplici

By Leonardo Barroso
A good bass player from Russia, a new great piano from England, sax from Germany and Italy. An european jazz cd. Original compositions and room for everyone to play their best. A good surprise.

By the Jazz Mann/ Ian Mann
The Moscow born double bassist Yuri Goloubev recently appeared on Gwilym Simcock’s excellent double album “Blues Vignette” and performed as part of Simcock’s trio when the pianist played at The Edge Arts Centre, Much Wenlock in February 2010. It was here that Yuri was kind enough to give me a copy of his 2009 solo album “Metafore Semplici” for review purposes.
The bassist now lives in Milan and the album is a truly international affair with Goloubev being joined by Simcock on piano, Asaf Sirkis on drums, Italian trumpeter Giovanni Falzone plus German reeds man Klaus Gesing on soprano sax and bass clarinet.
Goloubev has a classical background having been principal bassist for both the Bolshoi Opera and the Moscow Soloists Chamber Orchestra. Since moving to Italy he has concentrated on jazz whilst bringing certain elements of his classical past to his playing. Goloubev and Simcock are kindred spirits in their desire to blur the boundaries between jazz and classical music. Goloubev’s contribution to “Blues Vignette” is immense and his use of the bow on that album almost unparalleled in jazz.
Although “Metafore Semplici” is unquestionably a jazz album it does borrow from classical forms and structures. The album is bookended and divided by a series of jazz adaptations of the classical Chorale form. Goloubev’s informative liner notes explain that these are based on the German “Lied” song form. The brief opening “Chorale IV” is a simple polyphonic melody stated by horns plus arco bass above Simcock’s piano chording and Sirkis’ shimmering cymbals. It’s all very courtly and tightly disciplined with trumpet and bass clarinet shading off into something more abstract as the piece draws to a close.
The lengthy, episodic “Gare De Lyon” is more conventionally jazzy, a cinematic portrayal of the comings and goings at the Gare de Lyon station in Paris. In Goloubev’s words “this piece is a romantic exploration of the stories this building must hold”. Goloubev’s lushly inventive writing frames solos from himself on virtuoso plucked bass and Simcock on limpidly flowing piano followed by Gesing on lyrical then sharply probing soprano. Sirkis drums up a storm as Gesing’s solo builds in intensity during the tune’s latter stages.
“San Gaudenzio” is more impressionistic with some wonderfully resonant bass from the leader sympathetically supported by Simcock and the disciplined but colourful drumming of the excellent Sirkis. The piece was inspired by the San Gaudenzio in the Italian city of Novara. Goloubev seems to find architecture a particularly rich form of inspiration.
Goloubev’s composition “Francesca da Ischia” was inspired by Tchaikowsky’s “Francesca da Rimini.” The piece originally appeared on the 2007 trio album “Intermezzo” led by pianist Glauco Venier and featuring both Goloubev and Sirkis. Here the piece has been expanded to include Gesing’s oboe like soprano. At a little under a minute and a half it’s little more than a brief but beguiling sketch.
Joey Hitchhiker” is a tribute to the great American pianist and composer Joey Calderazzo. Loosely based on Calderazzo’s classic composition “Midnight Voyage” it swings prodigiously and features a delightfully bluesy solo from trumpeter Falzone full of slurs, growls and all the other tricks of the trumpeter’s trade. Goloubev weighs in with a typically nimble plucked solo , there’s some slippery soprano from Gesing and a series of energetic drum breaks from Sirkis. The band sound as if they’re having a great time on this one.
The title track sees a return to more lyrical territory with Gesing’s soprano stating the elegant theme followed by solos from Goloubev and the thoughtful Simcock. Sirkis’ cymbal touch is a particular delight and Gesing’s soprano charmingly lyrical.
“Chorale III” has Falzone’s trumpet “rebelling” against the rest of the group. He conjures an extraordinary range of sounds from his instrument, it laughs, growls and sobs. Interesting.
A rainy day in the French capital provides the inspiration for “Parisian Episode III” with Gesing’s soprano sounding suitably wistful. Simcock’s solo is flowing and lyrical and there are further statements from Gesing, Goloubev and finally Sirkis on this appropriately episodic piece.
“Diaries” begins in similarly yearning fashion before shading off into something more abstract as Gesing’s probing soprano pushes the boundaries. The saxophonist who has recorded albums for ECM with both singer Norma Winstone (“Distances” 2007) and oud player Anouar Brahem (“The Astounding Eyes Of Rita” 2008) is excellent throughout the recording, his playing simultaneously lyrical, pure toned and exploratory.
The playful “Quack Pero” is another vehicle for the trumpet pyrotechnics of Falzone. The piece is playful and quirky and swings mightily once it gets going. Drummer Sirkis and bassist Goloubev also show up strongly on early features and Gesing is dazzling on bass clarinet.
“Vouz-Aimez Brahms” is based on the opening of the third movement of the composer’s Symphony No. 3 in F major, one of Goloubev’s favourite classical works. It’s suitably elegant and lyrical with Falzone this time playing it straight with a beautifully flowing and controlled solo. Simcock is wholly at home in this environment and his solo is both beautiful and inventive and Gesing also makes a telling contribution. It should also be noted that the album as a whole features Sirkis at his most sympathetic.
“Chorale IV” bookend the album with a “reduced” version of the opening piece. “The curtain coming down after the drama” as Goloubev puts it.
“Metafore Semplici” is a beautifully recorded album that does it’s own bit to bridge the worlds between classical and jazz. Goloubev’s writing is imaginative and colourful and everybody plays superbly. The bassist subtly dictates proceedings and allows himself plenty of solo space. Surprisingly given the quality of his work with the bow on Simcock’s album there’s comparatively little arco playing here. On his own records Goloubev clearly prefers to play in the conventional jazz pizzicato manner. Nevertheless this is a fine album that should enhance Goloubev’s growing jazz reputation.

Trisha O'Brien
Out Of A Dream

By Leonardo Barroso
A woman, beautiful, singer, with a great band and great tunes. Well Diana Krall has opened this door, and new singers still come. Trisha has a good voice and no jazz, but you put her up with great jazz musicians, and you get a jazz vocal record. She's young and can develop her jazz. A good cd.

By Michael G. Nastos
Trisha O'Brien is a fresh face and voice on the standardized jazz scene, and presents a program of familiar songs that concentrates on the imagination and what can or is fated to be. They're all love songs with a ray of hope and a smile that implies O'Brien is happy with life in general. Teamed with the always excellent Shelly Berg and his trio of bassist Peter Washington and drummer Lewis Nash, O'Brien has chosen a most professional team to back her. This combo on occasion includes Ken Peplowski for three tracks on tenor sax only (not clarinet,) reprising two-thirds of the group that the acclaimed woodwind master used on his 2010 album Noir Blue. It's a laid-back set of ballads with a few energetic numbers and Berg's rearrangements tossed in for kicks. Uniquely rendered is a light bossa version of Joni Mitchell's "Help Me," Cole Porter's "I Love You," and surprising 5/4 version of "Let's Get Lost". O'Brien specializes in smoky ballads, mixes French and English lyrics on a lone track, sometimes kicks into a slightly higher gear as on a dream medley, or matches Berg's punchy two-handed chords during a Latin-flavored "Let's Face the Music & Dance." While fairly safe and taking few chances, O'Brien's voice is lissome and slight, as the world-class musicians she has chosen give her a bigger swing springboard than she might otherwise be used to. It's a good vocal effort, musically better, in the general scheme of things, with promise for future endeavors.