Sunday, November 29, 2015

2 Sem 2015 - Part Ten

Joey Alexander
My Favorite Things

By Matt Collar
The debut album from jazz piano prodigy Joey Alexander, 2015's My Favorite Things showcases the 11-year-old's stunning keyboard virtuosity. Joining Alexander here is a mix of older and younger associates, including journeyman bassist Larry Grenadier and drummer Ulysses Owens, Jr. Also backing Alexander on various tracks are bassist Russell Hall, drummer Sammy Miller, and up-and-coming firebrand trumpeter Alphonso Horne. Working with Grammy-winning producer Jason Olaine, who previously helmed albums by such jazz luminaries as Roy Hargrove, Chris Potter, Kurt Rosenwinkel, and others, Alexander delivers a handful of jazz standards and songs culled from the American Popular Songbook in adroit, acoustic, swinging fashion.

Juarez Maciel Grupo Muda

By Tratore
Com influências e referências de diversos estilos e ritmos musicais, como os ritmos afro-caribenhos e os brasileiros, samba, xote e outros. Com uma técnica apurada e uma sonoridade contagiante, o naipe de metais, sax tenor, sax barítono, trompete e trombone, se revezam nas improvisações jazzísticas, desenvolvendo diferentes linhas melódicas e conduzindo o ouvinte ao universo único da música instrumental.
Juarez Maciel
piano, arranjos e composições;
eduardo campos – bateria e vibrafone <> felipe fantoni - baixo acústico <> bill lucas - percussão <> paulo thomaz - violino <> jonas vitor - sax tenor <> wagner souza - trompete / flugelhorn <> marco daniel - trompete naipe ( faixa 1 – 5 - 6 ) <> juventino - trompete ( 1 – 3 – 5 – 6 ) <> roberto jr. sax barítono <> leonardo brasilino – trombone e arr. sax barítono <> fabio gonçalves - guitarra ( faixa 1 -3 - 5 ) <> pablo passini - guitarra ( faixa 2 - 4 – 6) <> improvisos safira – jonas vitor /sax <> wagner souza / trompete <> fabinho gonçalves / guitarra <> improvisos origami – wagner souza / trompete <> breno mendonça / sax tenor <> improvisos fora do tempo – jonas vitor / sax tenor <> wagner souza / trompete surdina <> improvisos funk estrela – breno mendonça / sax tenor <> wagner souza / trompete <> improviso náufragos - breno mendonça / sax tenor <> imrpovisos diadorim – brasilino / trombone <> pablo passini - guitarra
gravação e mixagem - bruno corrêa estúdio murillo corrêa belo horizonte - minas / brasil -
março a julho de 2011.
Masterização - andré cabelo

Karin Krog & Steve Kuhn
Break Of Day

By Marlbank/SG

The appeal of this album of standards from veteran Norwegian jazz vocals star Karin Krog and pianist Steve Kuhn, who, as a 21-year-old in 1960 found himself in John Coltrane’s quartet, is largely nostalgic.
At the heart of it all the duo tantalise and glimmer, guest appearances broadening the palette added from tenorist Eric Alexander and from trumpeter Lew Soloff who sadly died earlier this year. ‘I’m Old Fashioned’ is the opener of the album recorded in New York over the last two days of October 2013 and that old fashioned thing Krog conjures so matter-of-factly from the Jerome Kern/Johnny Mercer song could be the subtitle of an album that shelters under the welcoming canopy of the Great American Songbook.
Krog has written lyrics to several of the songs, contributing effortlessly to the mournful atmosphere of Carla Bley’s ‘Break of Day in Molde’ a performance that comes complete with a heartbreaking trumpet part from Lew Soloff who also later crops up on Tadd Dameron’s ‘You Do Something to Me’ and bluesman Jimmy Witherspoon’s ‘Time’s Getting Tougher than Tough’.
Krog might be thought of as the Norwegian equivalent of Annie Ross but really she stands unique as a legend in her own land, her fame understandably reaching far beyond Nordic climes, that lilt of hers and empathy with classic jazz so distinctively conveyed on dozens of records over a long career to date.
There’s no sense of hurry or quick fixes here at all and if like Krog you’re old fashioned too you’ll like this mid-tempo album a good deal. Kuhn is an ideal accompanist, not showy at all, with a great way of choosing and accenting just the right chord and interpreting even the most subtle of Krog’s hints. Eric Alexander is also a very retro kind of player in the Scott Hamilton school and he’s perfect casting here breaking through on Kenny Dorham tune ‘Scandia Skies’ Krog has written lyrics to.
In her liner note to Break of Day Krog writes: “I heard ‘Scandia Skies’ played by the wonderful trumpeter Kenny Dorham in the Montmartre jazz club in Copenhagen at some time in the late 60s… Kenny gave me a copy of the music and later I wrote some words to it. I thought that it was quite appropriate to include this tune as Steve Kuhn had played in Kenny’s band earlier on in his career.”
And ‘appropriate’ in other respects (history, respect for the tradition, timing, acute sensibility) is a word that recurs so often on this tasteful album, everything is just so. A very late night and definitely quietly affecting set: Krog and Kuhn pull out all the stops on ‘Everytime We Say Goodbye’ as they themselves say goodbye on the final track.

Bob James & Nathan East
The New Cool

By Andy Kellman
Recorded in five studios in Nashville and nearby Franklin, Tennessee, The New Cool is something of a follow-up to Nathan East's self-titled 2014 album, though it's billed to the bassist and his fellow Fourplay member, Bob James. Like Nathan East, The New Cool is a Yamaha release. The label wing of the manufacturer also supplied the duo with instruments and enabled them to make this predominantly acoustic set of eight originals and three interpretations. Drummer Scott Williamson, percussionist Rafael Padilla, and an orchestra -- with David Davidson as concertmaster -- are all involved, yet they're employed sparingly and leave the spotlight to East and James. The album sounds like it was easy and fun to make -- one can sense joy and deep focus in the interplay -- as the material is predominantly amiable and laid-back. It's almost entirely instrumental, with East adding some occasional soft scatting, while Vince Gill drops by for the lone "proper" vocal inclusion on an elegant recasting of Willie Nelson's "Crazy." Just when it seems as if The New Cool will end as it began, in sunny and mellow form, the closing "Turbulence" develops into what's easily the album's most active cut. Composer James lets loose with some athletic electric piano, East's bass is at its taut and melodic best, and Williamson, known most for his work on contemporary country and Christian sessions, shows that he can also hang with two crucial jazz rhythm-section dignitaries. This is a pleasant, if inessential, addition to the catalogs of the two musicians.

Tony Bennett & Bill Charlap
The Silver Lining: The Songs Of Jerome Kern

By Stephen Thomas Erlewine
The Silver Lining: The Songs of Jerome Kern functions as something of an answer to its predecessor, Cheek to Cheek. That 2014 duet album with Lady Gaga was suitably brassy and snazzy, relying on well-loved standards and pizzazz -- the kind of thing designed to stoke nostalgia vibes -- but The Silver Lining is a purer jazz record, an intimate songbook collaboration with pianist Bill Charlap; the difference can be heard simply in comparing the versions of "I Won't Dance" that pop up on the two albums -- the Gaga swings boldly, the Charlap rendition carries a wry resignation. Songbooks have been a standard item for Bennett throughout the years but if The Silver Lining recalls any specific album in the vocalist's discography, it's The Tony Bennett/Bill Evans Album, a record released in 1975 when Bennett dropped off the major-label radar and his name was perhaps as well-known to record buyers as that of Evans. While there may be a slight wattage differential between Bennett and Charlap, the difference is due to scale: Bennett is a household name; Charlap is a star among modern mainstream jazz fans. Accordingly, Bennett treats the pianist as an equal, giving him plenty of room to spin out long, liquid solos, passages that seem to glide out imperceptibly from his understated support. Often, The Silver Lining features little more than just the singer and the pianist -- when they're augmented by other musicians, it's just bass and drums, offering a bit of rhythm and color -- and this sparseness never seems austere due to the inherent warmth of the musicians' easy interplay, not to mention their individual voices. Both aspects are subtly showcased on The Silver Lining, and it's that delicate dance, where Bennett and Charlap enjoy playing together and apart, that makes this so charming.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

2 Sem 2015 - Part Nine

Antonia Bennett

By Tony Augarde
I had quite high expectations of this album, because it is by the daughter of renowned singer Tony Bennett. Mind you, that can have its problems as children of famous parents often get preferential treatment - it’s called nepotism. Yet Tony Bennett says of his daughter: “Antonia’s got the gift. She has good time. She sings in tune. She has a good spontaneous feeling for phrasing”.
In fact Tony’s assessment is a fair summary of Antonia’s gifts, although I’m not too sure about her phrasing. In fact her sound and style remind me of Stacey Kent, who has the same shake in her voice, and a similar pleasing tunefulness - despite this sometimes falling into blandness. Antonia sings in tune but her enunciation is poor, leaving off some final consonants which ought to be heard to get the thrust of the lyrics.
The lyrics are another point of contention. In an interview, Antonia praised the lyrics of the Great American Songbook, which makes up the entirety of the material on this CD. But if she so admires the words of the songs, why does she often change them unnecessarily? She garbles the lyrics ofI Can’t Give You Anything But Love, changing “That's the only thing I've plenty of” to “That’s the only thing I’m dreaming of”. In Nice Work if You Can Get It, she omits “anything” from “anything more”. And in The Nearness of You, she adds the word “Darling” before “if you’ll grant me”, similarly upsetting the balance of the words.
The backing trio is generally very acceptable, although the pianist has a way of ending tunes with upward tinkling notes that sound attractive the first time he uses them but which become irritating when used too frequently. And the drummer is one of those people who plays random rimshot clicks which add nothing to the rhythm. To cap it all, the album lasts for only about 35 minutes – not exactly generous. There are hosts of lady vocalists around at present, and listening to Antonia gives me the same feeling as watching The X Factor on television: do we really need more singers?
1. All of You; 2. But Not For Me; 3. Embraceable You; 4. All the Things You Are
5. I Can’t Give You Anything But Love; 6. The Man I Love; 7. Teach Me Tonight
8. Nice Work if You Can Get It; 9. Yesterdays; 10. The Nearness of You
Antonia Bennett – Vocals; Jon Davis – Piano; Paul Nowinski – Bass; Rafael Barata –Drums

Michel Camilo
What's Up?

By Thom Jurek
Though he has recorded in many different contexts before, from duets to trios to big bands, Michel Camilo has released only one solo piano outing in his long career up to now, 2005's Solo, which revealed in intimate detail his tactile, technical facility. What's Up? is a few steps down the road. Comprised of seven originals and four covers, this date showcases the composer and pianist's love of harmony, texture, color, and rhythmic invention in performing solo jazz piano. Camilo is a wily and rangy player; he embraces the jazz piano tradition throughout this date, and extends it with Latin and classical music He opens with boogie and stride in the title cut; it's punchy, knotty, joyous, and swinging -- a fine ride through Camilo's blues imagination. Following this energetic opener is the moodier "A Place in Time," with its classical nocturne feel that explores varied hues and timbres inside a minor-key arrangement. Given its ethereality and shimmering nuance, it's a fine contrast to the opener. Camilo's love of rhythms is evident in his sprightly reading of Paul Desmond's "Take Five" and his own charging Latin powerhouse "Paprika," with its wide harmonic exploration in the right-hand chord voicings and his rumbling left hand that shifts accents every chorus. His version of "Love for Sale" is playful, elegant, and canny in its deep inquiry into the melody's possibilities for extrapolation -- his solo winds it out entirely without losing its essence. His reading of Compay Segundo's "Chan Chan" is rife with Afro-Cuban rhythmic accents even as it exposes both blues and son. "On Fire" is an exercise in pure technical mastery yet despite its intense right-hand arpeggios and ostinatos, its intricate lyric statement remains amid athletic rhumba, mambo, and salsa rhythms. In his closing ballad "At Dawn," one can hear traces of both Bill Evans and Keith Jarrett, as space, and lyricism -- both direct and implied -- send the recording off with an elegant whisper. What's Up? is a commanding performance by a truly masterful, wildly creative jazz pianist and composer.

Pérez/ Patitucci/ Blade
Children Of The Light

By Manuel Grosso Galvan 
Three excellent musicians in his best moment. The music is clear and beautifully, full of elegance . Acoustic sound with some electric touchs , simple but also majestic but in essential acoustic. Perez is a excellent pianist, Patitucci is a great bass player and Blade is one of the best drummer in this moment. All the CD is impregnate of some kind of special light, the light of his mentor Wayne Shorter is present in every note. Great trio album, a complete lesson of how make something simple and in the same time some deep a full of beauty.

Rosa Passos
Canta Ary, Tom e Caymmi

By Mauro Ferreira
De 1997 a 2000, Rosa Passos lançou quatro álbuns pela Lumiar Discos, gravadora do violonista e produtor musical carioca Almir Chediak (1950 - 2003). Três foram songbooks dedicados pela cantora baiana às obras dos compositores Ary Barroso (1903 - 1964), Antonio Carlos Jobim (1927 - 1994) e Dorival Caymmi (1914 - 2008). Lançada pela gravadora Biscoito Fino neste mês de agosto de 2015, a coletânea Rosa Passos canta Ary, Tom e Caymmi compila 13 fonogramas destes álbuns. De Letra & Música - Ary Barroso (Lumiar Discos, 1997), álbum assinado por Rosa com o violonista Lula Galvão, o CD rebobina Morena boca de ouro (Ary Barroso, 1941), Pra machucar meu coração (Ary Barroso, 1943), Camisa Amarela (Ary Barroso, 1939) e Isto aqui o que é? (Ary Barroso, 1942). Do álbum Rosa Passos canta Antonio Carlos Jobim - 40 anos de Bossa Nova (Lumiar Discos, 1998), a coletânea inclui Inútil paisagem (Antonio Carlos Jobim e Aloysio de Oliveira, 1964 - e não Newton Mendonça, como creditado no álbum original em erro reproduzido na coletânea), Garota de Ipanema (Antonio Carlos Jobim e Vinicius de Moraes, 1962), Vivo sonhando (Antonio Carlos Jobim, 1963) e Samba de uma nota só (Antonio Carlos Jobim e Newton Mendonça, 1960). Por fim, do álbum Rosa Passos canta Caymmi (Lumiar Discos), a compilação reapresenta Samba da minha terra (Dorival Caymmi, 1940), Vestido de bolero (Dorival Caymmi, 1944), Marina (Dorival Caymmi, 1947), Só louco (Dorival Caymmi, 1955) e Vatapá (Dorival Caymmi, 1942). Detalhe: os fuxicos que ilustram a capa e o encarte do CD Rosa Passos canta Ary, Tom e Caymmi - em projeto gráfico criado por Flavia Oliveira - foram confeccionados pela própria artista.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

2 Sem 2015 - Part Eight

Diane Hubka
West Coast Strings

By Cdbaby
On this captivating new album, Diane has assembled a West Coast jazz guitar summit, with eight West Coast master guitarists; each of the all-star groupings providing the perfect setting for her soaring vocals.
I can still remember the enthusiastic response I had the first few times I heard Diane Hubka in action, around the start of the new millennium. In one of my Los Angeles Times reviews of her performances, I mentioned “the sweet-toned timbres” of her singing, and the “coolly articulate qualities of her interpretations.” In another, I described the way “the sweet sound of Hubka’s voice blends perfectly with her 7-string guitar.”

Lara Iacovini
Right Together

By Abeat
Take a stellar cast of European and American musicians, add the presence of Steve Swallow, who is artist, and composer now entered on the elite of the contemporary scene, include a beautiful female voice, insert some lyrics specially composed basing on Steve Swallow’s instrumental songs: you get this marvellous cd, titled " Right together featuring Steve Swallow” ; a disc where the immense class of the musicians, the power of the compositions, the lyrics representing a historical exception in the Swallow's repertoire, at last but not least important, the poetry, the mastery and magic of Steve Swallow as soloist ... The result is a high quality production that combines the two shores, European and American ones, closer to each other through a process of melting of musical and artistic elements, which is in place for some time.
Paolino Dalla Porta : doublebass; Andrea Dulbecco : vibe on tracks
Lara Iacovini : vocal, lyrics; Giovanni Mazzarino : piano, Fender Rhodes on track 8.9
Adam Nussbaum : drums; Roberto Soggetti : piano; Stewe Swallow : bass

Jeremy Fox
With Love

By Edward Blanco
Dr. Jeremy Fox has certainly made his mark in the jazz world but, not as a singer or musician but rather, as an educator/clinician, vocal coach and arranger, and on his inaugural album With Love, Fox offers an inspirational vocal album of jazz standards deserving serious attention. Assembling a group of ten world-class vocalist with varied combos, studio orchestra, a big band and a string section, Fox presents eleven newly-arranged standards from the likes of Sammy Cahn, Cole Porter, Neil Hefti and Artie Shaw among others. Writing custom arrangements for a host of top-notch singers was, in part, based on his Doctoral project in Jazz Composition at the Frost School of Music at the University of Miami, the beautiful music found on this album, is the result of that creative effort.
Based in Miami, FL, the Doctor draws from many area singers with national reputations like fellow alumnus Kate Reid, Kevin Mahogany, Wendy Pedersen as well as drawing international artists like Peter Eldridge and Lauren Kinhan —both members of the renowned New York Voices—along with Brazilian singer Rose Max vocalist and Swedish vocalist Anders Edenroth. Opening the music is a brand new arrangement of the time-honored Lew Brown/Sammy Fain standard "That Old Feeling" with Professor Reid providing the smooth vocals befitting such a tune. Essentially, book ending the album by appearing one more time on the finale, Reid—with the accompaniment of the String section—provides a truly inspiring version of the Sergio Mendes staple "So Many Stars."
Grammy-nominated singer Kate McGarry graces the recording with a tender treatment of the Cahn/Van Heusen standard "All My Tomorrows" followed by one of the highlights of the disc with baritone vocalist Kevin Mahogany's superb voicing of "Three Little Words." Not to be outdone, Derek Fawcett—founding member of the Chicago-based pop group Down The Line—delivers a fantastic version of "Get Out of Town," featuring Alex Weitz on tenor saxophone with some of the best instrumentals of the recording. Versatile jazz singer Sunny Wilkinson provides a warm and gentle take of the Stephen Sondheim song "Not While I'm Around" followed by a terrific arrangement of the Hefti/Bobby Troupe classic "Girl Talk," delivered by the sensational Wendy Pedersen with a little help from alto saxophonist Neil Carson.
Two beautiful soft spots on the recording come from first, the Edenroth original "Friendship" complete with cello, flugelhorn and flute solos, and the Jimmy Dorsey immortal "I'm Glad There Is You" voiced with emotion by Eldridge. Fellow New York Voices member, Kinhan gets to swing a bit on the big band arrangement of Shaw's perky "Moonray" assisted by pianist/keyboardist Daniel Strange, director of an All-Star Jazz ensemble in Coral Gables, FL. Cleverly crafted for some of arranger Jeremy Fox's favorite singers, With Love is a treasure trove of gorgeous arrangements, outstanding vocal performances and stellar instrumentals—all defining this charming recording as one of the best vocal albums on the jazz landscape.
Track Listing:
That Old Feeling; All My Tomorrows; Three Little Words; Get Out of Town; Not While I'm Around; Girl Talk; Dindi; Friendship; I'm Glad There Is You; Moonray; So Many Stars.
Jeremy Fox: piano (5), keyboards (6); Kate Reid: vocals (1, 11); Kate McGarry: vocals (2); Kevin Mahogany: vocals (3); Derek Fawcett: vocals (4); Sunny Wilkinson: vocal (5); Wendy Pedersen: vocals (6); Rose Max: vocals (7); Anders Edenroth: vocals (8); Peter Eldridge: vocals (9); Lauren Kinhan: vocals (10); Daniel Strange: piano, keyboards; Rene Toledo: guitar; Geoffrey Saunders: bass; Michael Piolet: drums; Ramatis Moraes: guitar (7); Lindsey Blair: guitar (6); Zach Larmer: guitar (6); Steve Lewis: drums (6); Angelo Versace: piano (4); Tim Jago: guitar (4); Daniel Susnjar: drums (4); Ryan Chapman: trumpet, flugelhorn; Paul Equihua: trumpet, flugelhorn; Jared Hall: trumpet, flugelhorn; Derek Ganong: trumpet, flugelhorn; Eric Bowman: trombone; Stephen Szabadi: trombone; Chris Gagne: trombone; Major Bailey: bass trombone; Neil Carson: alto saxophone; Dan Andrews: tenor saxophone; Alex Weitz: tenor saxophone; Matt Burchard: tenor saxophone; Derek Smith: tenor saxophone, clarinet, bassoon; Matt Small: clarinet; Ernesto Fernandez: flute; Erin Fishler-Branam: background vocals (8); Sherrine Mostin: scratch vocals; Pedro Fernandez: percussion; Nathan Skinner: vibraphone; Maria Chlebus: vibraphone (6); Vivek Gurudutt: table; Phuttaraksa Kamnirdratana: harp; Cassandra Eisenreich: flute; Allison Hubell: flute; James Drayton: oboe; Rachel Lueck: English Horn; Peter Bianca: clarinet; Carlos Felipe Vina: bassoon; Julia Paine: bassoon; Mathew Shefcik: flugelhorn; Stanley Spinola: horn; Larysa Pavecek: horn; Jon Lusher: horn; Sarah Williams: horn; Adam Diderrich: concertmaster; Michelle Godbee: violin; Patricia Jancova: violin; Karen Lord-Powell: violin; Zachary Piper: violin; Katrina Schaefer: violin; James Schlender: violin; Arianne Urban: violin; Steffen Zeichner: violin; Amanda Diaz: viola; Emily Jones: viola; Robyn Savitzky: viola; Kathryn Severing: viola; Joy Adams: cello; Sarah Gongaware: cello; Cecelia Huerta: cello; Chris Young: cello.

Mark Elf
Returns 2014

By Joe Williams
A terrific Return! I was really excited to see this new release by Mark Elf after his time away, and now I find myself going back to this album often. A nice collection of straight ahead jazz and hard bop, technically sharp and precise as always. I found these tunes more accessible and swinging than some of his other releases I've heard. Worth it. 

Sam Most
New Jazz Standards

By Carl Saunders

Sam Most's very last recording, featuring all new compositions from
the multi-talented Carl Saunders, was recorded and finished just a month
prior to Most's passing on June 13, 2013.
One of the most beloved figures in jazz, best known for being a
pioneering jazz flute soloist.
Full of spirit, with catchy toe-tapping originals that include Sam scatting
perfectly, this is really great stuff!
One of the most gifted jazz musicians I ve ever met.

Sunday, November 08, 2015

2 Sem 2015 - Part Seven

Vanessa Perea
Soulful Days

By Raul Da Gama
Vanessa Perea might have a particular flair for the theatrical. This is suggested by the manner of her phrasing. Ms. Perea is able to pace herself and tell stories with each song she sings. In the case of this album, Soulful Days her range is grand and her ability to hold high notes as well as low ones is so utterly convincing that she could easily be on stage telling her story on Broadway, for instance. She also sings to the limits of the instrumentation which is small in this case and it would be interesting to listen to and watch her perform with a much bigger ensemble, with a big band. It is almost certain that she could clearly take on the size of even a full orchestra. She has that presence. Here, stripped down to one trombone with the trumpet for company there is a part of the ear that misses an ensemble of Ellingtonian proportions although Ms. Perea sometimes enunciates the lyric suggesting in the manner of another woodwind or a brass instrument creating breathtaking counterpoint for those with which she is already singing wordlessly or with words. And these are wonderful arrangements made it would seem, to fit Ms. Perea’s personality as well. She takes on the songs as if they were written for her as well.
As William Blake put it, fire will find its form, Soulful Days is a perfect convergence of content and form. Woodwind, brass and piano conjure the playful fantasy world of the music in which Vanessa Perea becomes a minstrel who almost slips back in time to the date and time of the characters’ encounters in these folk tales. Ms. Perea’s tremendous vocalising of Anthony Newley and Lesley Bricusse’s “Who Can I Turn To” is a case where the lyric makes the heartbreak and elemental loneliness come hauntingly alive. In “Jim” there is another beautiful rendition of a song that is emotively strong and requires the vocal efforts to be more evocative than in a simple song. Ms. Perea draws out her word-endings with beautiful anguish in the classic “Tenderly” and it is here that she seems to suggest the narrative palette of Broadway. Her Portuguese is also on form as she sings Antonio Carlos Jobim’s “Triste” and Caetano Veloso’s “Luz do Sol”. This is a greater test of strength and ability in a manner of speaking as vocal skills must be matched here with the ability to dream in another language and this Ms. Perea does very convincingly. But there is a surprise waiting in store for the listener and it is in none of the above.
Vanessa Perea outdoes herself as she is pitted against the trombone of Robert Edwards on Bud Powell’s classic bebop chart, “Celia”. The singer carries herself through magnificently here and it is almost worth the entire album just to get to her scatting solo on this wonderful track. Bebop, as Sheila Jordan tells her pupils in a master class, requires just as much emotion as it does speed. In the case of this Bud Powell song Ms. Perea displays this with such monumental control that it is almost too tempting to suggest, at the risk of being too presumptuous, perhaps a bebop recording next.
Track List: 
Devil May Care; Soulful Days (These Are Soulful Days); Who Can I Turn To; Too Marvelous For Words; Jim; December Blue (Martha’s Prize); Triste: Let Me Tell You; Luz do Sol; Tenderly; Celia
Vanessa Perea: vocals; Robert Edwards: trombone; Matt Jodrell: trumpet; Dave Lantz: piano; Dylan Shamat: bass; Evan Sherman: drums.

Andy Bey
Pages From An Imaginary Life

By Matt Collar
Coming off his Grammy-nominated 2013 album, The World According to Andy Bey, vocalist/pianist Andy Bey delivers the equally compelling 2014 release Pages from an Imaginary Life. As with its predecessor, Pages finds the jazz iconoclast returning to his roots with a set of American Popular Song standards done in a ruminative, stripped-down style. This is Bey, alone at the piano, delving deeply into the harmony, melody, and lyrics of each song. But don't let the spare setting fool you. Bey is a master of interpretation. In his seventies at the time of recording, and having performed over the years in a variety of settings from leading his own swinging vocal trio, to working with hard bop pioneer Horace Silver, to exploring the avant-garde with Archie Shepp, Bey has aged into a jazz oracle who doesn't so much perform songs as conjure them from somewhere in the mystical ether of his psyche. Famously blessed with a distinctive, sonorous baritone warble, Bey's voice has only ripened over the years to a warm, burnished, woody resonance; a sound perfectly suited for these poignant, romantic songs. In his hands, songs like "My Foolish Heart," "How Long Has This Been Going On?," and "Everything I Have Is Yours," take on new hues of gorgeous devastation. And yet, there's still something hopeful, swinging, and urbane about Bey's performances, and songs like "Lover Come Back to Me" and "Take the 'A' Train," are, as with all of the music on Pages from an Imaginary Life, joyous, earthy celebrations of life and love.

Carol Fredette
no sad songs for me

By C. Michael Bailey
We last heard from vocalist Carol Fredette on her first Soundbrush recording, Everything in Time (2009). Her repertoire was replete with, "Light latin jazz, humid islands, and secure mainstream treatments." Fredette remains fairly true to this mix of styles on No Sad Songs For Me, specifically addressing all songs of upbeat content, if not tempo. The singer calls upon much the same band as on the previous recording, specifically pianists Helio Alves, Dario Eskenazi and Andy Ezrin.
It is notable that No Sad Songs For Me is executive produced by Pablo Aslan and Roger Davidson, two names closely associated with Latin jazz and bossa nova, styles that potently inform Fredette's repertoire here. Fredette is serious about the title and title tune for this recording. It is surprising she included Jobim's "Double Rainbow" and not his "No More Blues." These songs are upbeat and the universal mood of this recording is supercharged positive.
Fredette commands Bob Merrill's "It's Good to be Alive" and Irving Berlin's "The Best Thing for You." The former she treats as a delicate ballad and the later Latin-infused and simmered on high heat, Kevin Winard's percussion being particularly effective. The Cahn-Van Heusen chestnut "To Love and Be Loved" is gently rendered as a perfect cocktail hour ballad. Fredette's support is solid and competent, providing the singer an environment for her pristine vocal delivery of this most attractive recital.
Track Listing: 
I Am In Love; No Sad Songs For Me; The Best Thing for You; To Love And Be Loved; You’d Better Love Me; Double Rainbow; You’re Getting to be a Habit With Me; Havin’ Myself a Time; This is Always; Dancing In The Dark; Long Ago and Far Away; You Better Go Now; No Regrets.
Carol Fredette: vocals; Helio Alves: piano (1, 7, 11); Dario Eskenazi: piano (4, 5); Andy Ezrin: piano (2, 3, 6, 8, 9, 10, 12, 13, 14); David Finck: bass; Kevin Winard: drums, percussion; David Mann: saxophones, flutes; Tony Kadleck: trumpet; Michael Davis: trombone; Bob Mann: guitar.

Hal Galper Trio
O's Time

By Dan McClenaghan
It's hard to be innovative in the piano trio format. The last big change happened in the late fifties and early sixties, with pianist Bill Evans' groundbreaking trio featuring bassist Scott LaFaro and drummer Paul Motian. The democratization of input and interplay changed the trio game, and countless groups have worked on refining that Evans approach ever since. A more recent development has been bombast and the inclusion of rock and poplar tunes into the jazz piano trio endeavor—with varying degree of success. Rubato playing, the stretching of the varying of tempos, in a three way improvisational way, is pianist Hal Galper's contribution to piano trio innovation.
O's Time is Galper's fifth recording in the rubato style on Origin Records. His trio, with bassist Jeff Johnson and drummer John Bishop, perfected their approach with 2011's Airegin Revisited. The current offering rolls that artistic peak out on a high plateau, twsiting the familiar ( John Coltrane "Like Sonny," Charlie Chaplain's "Smile") into different shapes, revealing different sides to the melodic threads.
"Coltrane's "Like Sonny" opens the set. The three voices bounce off each other like a cocktail party conversation, synchronous and discordant at the same time. And like that party, as the drinks flow, the volume rises toward the raucous, without, on this tune at least, actually going there. Then there's the Zen serenity of a Johnson bass solo, sparely comped by Galper.
Saxophonist Wayne Shorter's "Wildflower" has a "fractured then put back together" feeling, turbulent drums from Bishop behind Galper's relative restraint. "O's Time," written by Galper in honor of alto saxophonist/free jazz pioneer Ornette Coleman, moves away from the concept of restraint. It rolls and tumbles and sounds like, at its peak, a piano trio stuffed into a burlap bag and pushed down the stairs, with the players hanging on tight and still keeping the tune from chaos. And Charlie Chaplain's much-covered smile sounds like they're set up on the back of a flatbed truck, careening ninety miles an hours down a winding mountain road.
Exhilarating! The Hal Galper Trio shows the others guys what innovative is all about.
Track Listing:
Like Sonny; Wildflower; O's Time; Moonglazed; Smile; Our Waltz.
Hal Galper: piano; Jeff Johnson: bass; John Bishop: drums

Richard Galliano

By Thom Jurek
Sentimentale is accordionist Richard Galliano's debut as a leader for Resonance Records. This date marks his return to jazz after a three-album sojourn with Deutsche Grammophon recording the music of Bach, Piazzolla, and Vivaldi. His multi-national quintet here includes Israeli-born pianist and arranger Tamir Hendelman, American guitarist Anthony Wilson, Cuban bassist Carlitos Del Puerto, and Brazilian drummer Mauricio Zottarelli. The program is as diverse as the personnel. Things kick off on the spirited side with a galloping reading of Chick Corea's "Armando's Rumba," with Wilson and Galliano twinning the head as Hendelman lays down shiny chords and spirited montunos with a killer bass solo from Del Puerto before the accordionist launches into a combination of tango and jazz. Duke Ellington's "In a Sentimental Mood" opens with a near pastoral reverie before the melody is introduced by Galliano and Wilson. Hendelman's illustrative fills and comps are gorgeous without being flowery. The funky groove in Horace Silver's "The Jody Grind" is derived from Dee Dee Bridgewater's vocal version, despite Hendelman's finger popping pianism. Galliano crosses harmonic lines between both Zottarelli's drum break, spiky blues from Wilson, and soul-jazz swagger from Del Puerto. On John Coltrane's "Naima," Wilson adopts a near sitar-like sound while Galliano's crystalline, glass bead sound enters into the melody and opens it onto the accordion's higher register, offering a bright harmonic flourish in his solo. Brazilian music makes its appearance on Sentimentale as well. This take on Ivan Lins' evergreen "The Island" is equally based on the composer's earliest, Bahia-informed version rather than his post-bossa take from later years as well as singer Patti Austin's. Likewise "Verbos Do Amor," by João Donato and Abel Silva, finds Galliano's quintet engaging in inspired, multi-textured samba. There are two familiar originals here as well: "Ballade Pour Marion" is magical in this bal musette-cum-lyrical jazz setting as Hendelman's voicings twin with the accordionists', offering different timbral statements and underscoring its lush colors. Closer "Lili" is trimmed to a languid, tender duet between the accordionist and Wilson -- both of whom display their enormous gifts for lyricism (which is why they are oft-chosen accompanists for singers). Sentimentale is not only classy in its choice of material, it's canny and expert in its arrangement, interplay, and articulation. Like the best of Galliano's recordings, it displays not only his iconic signature on the accordion, but the commanding presence, communicative inquisitiveness, and elegant creativity of his spirit.

Saturday, November 07, 2015

2 Sem 2015 - Part Six

Jane Ira Bloom
Sixteen Sunsets

By Dan McClenghan
Sidney Bechet pioneered the use of the soprano saxophone in jazz in the early 20s. John Coltrane
saxophone brought that "straight horn" out of a relative dormancy of use in 1959 with his anthem-like take on Rodgers and Hammerstein's "My Favorite Things" on his Atlantic Records album of the same name. Steve Lacy took the soprano "out there," and Dave Liebman continues to stretch its boundaries.
The name Jane Ira Bloom can be added to that list of icons. For thirty years Bloom has used the soprano saxophone to give voice to fertile and uncompromising artistic spirit. She's broken ground on the introduction of live electronics into her music and has created a singular sound on a variety of multi-faceted projects—including a commissioned work by the NASA Art Program. And (talk about "out there") the International Astronomical Union named an asteroid for her: 6083janeirabloom.
Bloom's work in a quartet setting shines the brightest, on 2003's Chasing Paint (Arabesque Records), a nod to painter Jackson Pollock, 2008's Mental Weather (Outline), or the CD at hand, Sixteen Sunsets, an examination of the ballad form.
For such a forward-looking artist, this is something of a surprise. Bloom explores the standards here, along with four of her own standard form songs, with an extraordinary aplomb and patience. Her tone on the soprano is the purest, richest of sounds—as if her horn were made of gold; and her quartet, featuring Matt Wilson on drums, bassist Cameron Brown and pianist Dominic Fallacaro, play with a delicacy and restraint that gives the sound a feeling of depth and a subdued grandeur.
Bloom says she knows the words to all these songs: "I Loves You Porgy," "The Way You Look Tonight," "For All We Know," "Good Morning Heartache." These are tunes that dip down deep into longing, heartache, loneliness, tender love. Bloom's soprano saxophone is her voice. It's a voice that tells these song's stories with an exquisite grace and understanding of the vicissitudes of the human condition.
Bloom's backing trio rolls mostly in the mode of subtle accompaniment, but when she lays back the trio steps out with a jewel- like elegance, as pianist Fallacaro, with the supplest of touches, wrings every teardrop out of the melody of "Good Morning Heartache," or injects a hopeful counterpoint to the angst of the temptations on "I Loves You Porgy."
Sixteen Sunsets is, arguably, Jane Ira Bloom's most compelling recording. It's certainly her loveliest—no argument there. And the sound quality is out of this world. An asteroid is nice, but it seems a rather small celestial body for an artist that can create something as perfect as this disc. Perhaps a star, a bright one, can be found.
Track Listing:
For All We Know; What She Wanted; Gershwin's Skyline/I Loves You Porgy; Darn That Dream; Good Morning Heartache; Out of This World; Ice Dancing; Left Alone; The Way You Look Tonight; But Not For Me; Primary Colors; My Ship; Too Many Reasons; Bird Experiencing Light.
Jane Ira Bloom: soprano saxophone; Dominic Fallacaro: piano; Cameron Brown: bass; Matt Wilson: drums.

Jon Davis Trio
live at the bird's eye

By Challenge
Pianist, composer, Jon Davis from New York has been performing and touring with many of the finest jazz musicians around world for more than 25 years. He has appeared on over 50 recordings. Jon Davis met with Swiss musicians Isla Eckinger and Peter Schmidlin some 15 years ago.
He appeared already on TCB 22142 ‘George Robert-Bobby Shew Quintet’, released in 2002. 
In 2013 he played a few concerts in December 2013 in Switzerland with this trio where the evening at the Bird’s Eye Jazz Club in Basel was recorded live.
Jaco Pastorius, longtime friend of Jon, said: ”Jon is my third favorite pianist…after Joe (Zawinul) and Herbie (Hancock)” and Jazz Japan mentioned that: “Jon Davis is the ultimate story teller.”
A relaxed, swinging Session in probably the best Jazz club in Switzerland with a very nice selection of great tunes from the American songbook plus a composition written by Jon Davis. Fans of the piano/bass/drums format will love this CD.

Mark Winkler & Cheryl Bentyne
West Coast Cool

By C. Michael Bailey
In 2010, jazz vocal specialists Cheryl Bentyne and Mark Winkler began a collaboration that resulted in a live show entitled West Coast Cool that they presented at different venues on the West Coast and beyond. Summit Records commits this show to digital with an album of the same title that is something special. While programming a recording is always a major production responsibility, that responsibility is lessened when the recital is one well practiced and part of a previously conceived show. Such is West Coast Cool, and this collection is the better for it.
Cheryl Bentyne is best known as the soprano voice of the Janis Siegel, Tim Hauser and Alan Paul. She has several solo recordings to her credit, her most recent being: Let Me Off Uptown (Telarc, 2005), The Book of Love (Telarc, 2006), The Gershwin Songbook (ArtistShare, 2010) and Let's Misbehave: The Cole Porter Songbook (Summit, 2012).
Mark Winkler has been a West Coast fixture for the past thirty years, releasing eleven recordings and composing dozens of songs recorded by himself and the likes of Liza Minnelli, Randy Crawford, David Basse, Jackie Ryan and Dianne Reeves. Winkler's most recent recording, The Laura Nyro Project (Cafe Pacific Records, 2013) was well received in critical corners. Together, the pair have rekindled the fire of cool circa the Eisenhower '50s, when the songwriting was exceptionally smart and stylistically razor sharp, martinis were cold and cigarettes filterless.
Some very sharp programming is employed in pairing songs in audio diptychs. The recording opens with a mash up of Paul Desmond's and Iola Brubeck's "Take 5" and Winkler's wonderfully off-kilter "Drinks On The Patio." The piece(s) are introduced with a straight salvo from pianist Rich Eames
and tenor saxophonist Bob Sheppard. Then the groove changes decidedly into the 5/4 time made famous by Dave Brubeck and his quartet in 1959. The piece transforms into Winkler's aural photograph of hipsters listening to jazz while mixing martinis, smooth ones if we judge by the precise admixture of Bentyne's and Winkler's pipes.
This same programming intelligence brought together "Talk Of The Town" and "Girl Talk" from the respective Bentyne and Winkler songbooks: drawing from Bentyne's Talk Of the Town (Telarc, 2003) and Winkler's Sings Bobby Troup (Rhombus Records, 2003). Bentyne displays her exquisite treatment of ballads juxtaposed against Winkler's perfect presentation of 1950s too cool. The two are sexy beyond belief.
The vocal pair demonstrate their potent vocal styles on the Nat King Cole medley of "Route 66/Alright, Okay, You Win/Straighten Up And Fly Right." Bentyne and Winkler weave these three classics together into a finely wrought cloth. Bentyne's smooth, perfectly balanced soprano mixes with Winkler's friendly, approachable and playful voice like cream stirs into coffee, rich and aromatic. The two skillfully slide song lyrics over one another, juxtaposing melodies until the music is ataxic with the shared joy of being sung by these voices. The duet highlight of the collection is the semi-original "West Coast Cool." Winkler shows off his lyrical wares by penning words to Neal Hefti's classic "Lil' Darlin.'" The pair pay homage to a who's who of West Coast Jazzers while their accompanying quartet lay down the Hefti silk beneath their words.
Each singer also gets solo space. Bentyne purrs on the infrequently heard "An Occasional Man" where she dances with Sheppard's slippery tenor. Bentyne brings together "All About Ronnie" and "Trouble With A Man" in a jaded lament of love lost, while drawing the sensual humidity from Horace Silver's "Senor Blues." Winkler recalls two more Troup pieces in "Lemon Twist" and "Hungry Man." He updates these pieces with his trademark user-friendly delivery, sense of humor, and exemplary musicianship. Pianist Jon Mayer kills on "Hungry Man" while organist Joel Bragg and guitarist Anthony Wilson lay out an organ jazz red carpet.
West Coast Cool is artistry that is beyond words. Wow. Just Wow.
Track Listing: 
Take 5/Drinks On The Patio; The Occasional Man; Let’s Get Lost; Talk Of The Town/Girl Talk; West Coast Cool; Something Cool; Route 66/Alright, Okay, You Win/Straighten Up And Fly Right; Senor Blues; Lemon Twist; This Could Be The Start Of Something Big; Hungry Man; All About Ronnie/Trouble Is A Man; In A Lonely Place; Cool.
Cheryl Bentyne: vocals; Mark Winkler: vocals; Rich Eames: piano (1, 2, 4-8, 10); Tim Emmons: bass (1, 2, 4-8, 10); Dave Tull: drums (1, 2, 4- 8, 10); Bob Sheppard: saxophones, flute (1, 2, 4-8, 10, 11); Nolan Shahead: trumpet (3); Anthony Wilson: guitar (9); Joe Bragg: Hammond B3 organ (9); Mark Ferber: drums (9); John Mayer: piano (11); Kevin Axt: bass (11); Ron McCurdy: drums (11); Eli Brueggeman: piano: (14); George Koller: bass (14); Mark Kelso: drums (14). 

Tina May

By Dave Gelly, The Observer
"Tina May waited a long time to record this collection of songs associated with great female singers of the last century - Billie Holiday, Sarah Vaughan, Lotte Lenya, Edith Piaf et al - but it was worth it. Not only has her own singing matured, she has found the perfect arranger for the job in Frank Griffiths. To each of these dozen pieces she succeeds in imparting a delicate flavour of the original while remaining her inimitable self. Her version of Peggy Lee's Why Don't You Do Right? is particularly good, aided by Griffiths's beautifully poised clarinet."
Track list:
1. Why Don't You Do Right; 2. There's A Lull In My Life; 3. Forgetful
4. Can't Get Out Of This Mood; 5. When The World WAs Young
6. Where You At; 7. Surabaya Johnny; 8. Baltimore Oriole; 9. Let's Get Lost
10. You Don't Know What Love Is; 11. All Through The Night
Tina May - vocals; Winston Clifford - vocals; John Pearce - piano
Dave Cliff - guitar; Freddie Gavita - trumpet; Adrian Fry - trombone
Frank Griffith - tenor sax, clarinet; Bob Martin - alto saxophone
Andy Cleyndert - double bass; Bobby Worth - drums