John Gilbert - jazzreview.com - Your Jazz Music Connection - jazzreview.com - Your Jazz Music Connection http://jazzreview.com Tue, 23 May 2017 04:06:34 -0500 Joomla! - Open Source Content Management en-gb Homey by The Intervention Band http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/bebop-hard-bop-cd-reviews/homey-by-the-intervention-band.html http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/bebop-hard-bop-cd-reviews/homey-by-the-intervention-band.html Homey by The Intervention Band
This is an album that the aficionados of bop will thoroughly enjoy. The ensemble gathered here are first class musicians who ply their trade with both joyful abandon and sensitivity. The session was done in a day giving it the feel of extemporaneous 'swing' as the glorious bands of Bird et al exhibited in the heyday of jazz. There is bop from top to bottom, with each tune carefully chosen. "Groovin' High" is a prime example of jazz as it should be played. Pfeifer's piano opens matters like a cool breeze.

This is an album that the aficionados of bop will thoroughly enjoy. The ensemble gathered here are first class musicians who ply their trade with both joyful abandon and sensitivity. The session was done in a day giving it the feel of extemporaneous 'swing' as the glorious bands of Bird et al exhibited in the heyday of jazz. There is bop from top to bottom, with each tune carefully chosen. "Groovin' High" is a prime example of jazz as it should be played. Pfeifer's piano opens matters like a cool breeze. Tim Fox wails in fine fashion weaving a message around the melody. Justin Pfeifer's joins in with a Powellesque solo. Bob Levey has time like a Rolex and his accents drive this tune along like a man on a mission. On "I Thought About You" Tim Fox says hello with a soulful and sensitive melody tribute to Mercer, Van Heusen and Leiber. Nice brush work by Levey with no undo frills. The bass solo has the sound all basses should have. This is a lovely tune done with all the respect it deserves....Mr. Peifer comps beautifully adding even more tasty chords to complete this gem. "Peri's Scope" is a jaunty excursion into the land where bop resides. Fox trots in with another idea filled solo that sweetly swings. The drums back Peifer's offerings and the bass and drums stroll merrily along hand in glove.

"Lament" Like a susurrus the stimuli of Bill Evans is heard in Tim Fox's solo, which I define as perfection in form, the brushes add a lot to this song. This is a CD that the true cognoscenti will relish along with the jazz litterati. It's beauty lies in the fact that the tunes are treated with the respect they deserve (as previously mentioned.) I would recommend this recording with no hesitation.

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morrice.blackwell@gmail.com (John Gilbert) BeBop / Hard Bop - CD Reviews Sat, 18 Feb 2012 16:12:29 -0600
Dan Jacobs Quartet - Play Song http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/contemporary-jazz-cd-reviews/dan-jacobs-quartet-play-song.html http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/contemporary-jazz-cd-reviews/dan-jacobs-quartet-play-song.html Dan Jacobs Quartet - Play Song
The trumpet is the most difficult instrument to play (physically) requiring top notch chops and Dan Jacobs has been blessed in this regard many times over. This quartet has it all together in this fine album. The arrangements are fabulous and the solos are not only inventive but performed soulfully and pleasing to the ear.

 

The trumpet is the most difficult instrument to play (physically) requiring top notch chops and Dan Jacobs has been blessed in this regard many times over. This quartet has it all together in this fine album. The arrangements are fabulous and the solos are not only inventive but performed soulfully and pleasing to the ear.

Wayne Shorter's "Speak No Evil" is a jaunty excursion into the land of bop and Jacob's rendering is a lesson in swing. Gerard Hagen at the piano follows with an electric 'Powellesque' message. Dan Jacobs exhibits his facility in another turn at bat. Great tune done artfully with both a grace and drive.
 The title tune "Play Song" opens with Hagen's beautiful gamboling epistle. Dan Jacobs Floogie weaves a magical spell emphasizing ideation and leaving no doubt that there is no thin gruel here. Nunez bass solo is both melodic and leaves no doubt that he is a gifted bassist with chops galore.
 "Relaxing" strolls along happily and Jacobs' solo is a study in musicianship with a message most eloquent. There is a Miles like quality in Dan Jacobs playing but he has with more range and is certainly more creative than Miles Davis. An exciting piano directive is inspiring in it's inimitable Hagen style.
 "Speak Low" is a haunting ballad artfully done by both Jacobs and Hagen in a manner most fitting that would certainly please the ear of Kurt Weill as it does your humble correspondent.

The tunes are carefully chosen, the player's superb, and that adds up to a recording that will please the ear of the jazz fan and the cognoscenti alike 

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morrice.blackwell@gmail.com (John Gilbert) Contemporary Jazz - CD Reviews Thu, 16 Feb 2012 17:20:25 -0600
Kayo Hiraki: I Wish You Love http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/bebop-hard-bop-cd-reviews/kayo-hiraki-i-wish-you-love.html http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/bebop-hard-bop-cd-reviews/kayo-hiraki-i-wish-you-love.html Kayo Hiraki: I Wish You Love
Kayo Hiraki's pianistic ability interprets jazz standards into boppish gems adding a distinctive vocal on some.This is the fifth CD for this artist from Japan. She has appeared at all the major jazz clubs in New York and performed with many of the top stars.

Kayo Hiraki's pianistic ability interprets jazz standards into boppish gems adding a distinctive vocal on some.This is the fifth CD for this artist from Japan. She has appeared at all the major jazz clubs in New York and performed with many of the top stars.

Her worthy constituents on this effort are, to wit: Kayo Hiraki piano, vocals, Pat O'Leary,bass, Matthew Crawford, drums, Ryo Sasaki, trumpet 2&8, Nick Hemptom, alto sax, 2&11 

Tunes: You And The Night And The Music, It's You Or No one, So I Love, Autum In New York, Ceora, You Don't Know What Love Is, I Wish You Love, What Is This Thing Called Love, Day By Day, The Night Has A Thousand Eyes, Crazeology, Dream.

"You And The Night And The Music" A perky waltz opens matters followed by a swinging 4/4 solo that is a happy excursion into the soul of bop. Nice drum accompaniment with no histrionics. Solid interpretation of this beautiful tune.

"It's You Or No One" Brilliant changes grace this number and Kayo is a knockout for sure as she rocks this song into the land where bop abides.

"Autimn In New York" Sasaki's trumpet sweetly greets this tender ballad with a sensitivity that is heartfelt and romantic in the truest sense of the word. Kayo Hiraki comps thoughtfully and solos with passion

"Day By Day" Hiraki's exuberant vocal and some hip scatting highlight this perky track. O'Leary's bass solo is a study in excellence.

There are 12 tunes on this album and each is tastefully done with no thin gruel in the mix. This CD is well worth the price of admission and worthy of any cognoscenti's collection.

 

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morrice.blackwell@gmail.com (John Gilbert) BeBop / Hard Bop - CD Reviews Mon, 29 Aug 2011 15:38:11 -0500
Under a Painted Sky by Judy Wexler http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/jazz-vocals-cd-reviews/under-a-painted-sky-by-judy-wexler.html http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/jazz-vocals-cd-reviews/under-a-painted-sky-by-judy-wexler.html Judy Wexler looms large in the relatively small world of jazz vocalists, and this recording, Under a Painted Sky, will certainly attest to that. Wexler is accompanied by some of the most talented musicians in the jazz idiom, a perfect assemblage of formidable artists to complete this musical tableau.On "And I Hoped For Your Love" Judy Wexler lays it all on the line as she interprets the lyrics to this song of sorrow with her soul bared. Alan Pasqua adds his magical touch to an already elegant tu

Judy Wexler looms large in the relatively small world of jazz vocalists, and this recording, Under a Painted Sky, will certainly attest to that.

Wexler is accompanied by some of the most talented musicians in the jazz idiom, a perfect assemblage of formidable artists to complete this musical tableau.

On "And I Hoped For Your Love" Judy Wexler lays it all on the line as she interprets the lyrics to this song of sorrow with her soul bared. Alan Pasqua adds his magical touch to an already elegant tune.

With "An Occasional Man," the track radiates sexuality in a clever way and Judy Wexler is in top form. Walt Fowler's solo is a study in a perect marriage of horn and vocal articulation.

On "Don't Wait Too Long," Wexler describes this song as poignant and longing ,and that certainly expresses it perfectly in this story of ache and resignation as this artist describes it.

The track that will get your attention is "Last Time For Love," as it sure did for me. As a matter of fact, it might be the story of my life. Pasqua opens matters with his defining touch, he comps like no other. The lyrics to this song are so thought provoking that one's mood is immediately transported to another dreamy place. Judy Wexler's inclusion of this tune is a choice wisely made.

Larry Koonse is heard throughout with unparalleld musicianship. Koonse adds much to this album. I have never heard Judy Wexler in finer form. As mentioned, there is a paucity of genuine jazz singers and this vocalist is to be included as a rising star in this limited group.

This recording should be in the true jazzophiles collection, it gets no better.

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morrice.blackwell@gmail.com (John Gilbert) Jazz Vocals - CD Reviews Sun, 27 Mar 2011 01:00:00 -0500
Don't Look Back by Jane Stuart http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/jazz-vocals-cd-reviews/don-t-look-back-by-jane-stuart.html http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/jazz-vocals-cd-reviews/don-t-look-back-by-jane-stuart.html Jane Stuart has all the attributes of a real jazz singer and she utilizes them all in this fine album. The musicians are all first class, and that's as it should be on a recording of this calibre."I Just Found Out About Love" A happy tempo and some hip scatting from La Belle Stuart gets this album off the ground in a hurry. In the immortal words of Jerry Lewis, "I Like It, I Like It""Let It Come To You" Is an original by Stuart. This track is an introspective look into the soul of Jane Stuart. T

Jane Stuart has all the attributes of a real jazz singer and she utilizes them all in this fine album. The musicians are all first class, and that's as it should be on a recording of this calibre.

"I Just Found Out About Love" A happy tempo and some hip scatting from La Belle Stuart gets this album off the ground in a hurry. In the immortal words of Jerry Lewis, "I Like It, I Like It"

"Let It Come To You" Is an original by Stuart. This track is an introspective look into the soul of Jane Stuart. The lyrics are beautiful and sung with the depth of musical soul searching.

"Wheelers And Dealers" Dave Frishberg penned this tune and Jane Stuart interprets it magnificently. Again the words weave a spell of truth. This is a tough tune to sing and Stuart captures the intent of the author in no uncertain terms. A Latin beat adds just the right touch.

"Summertime" This old chestnut is given new life in this version and Jane Stuart lends a personal touch that works brilliantly. Dick Oatts strong alto soliloquy is brief but compelling.

" I Didn't Know What Time It Was" This is a particular favorite of mine. The vocal is direct with no nonsense, a pleasant reprieve from the usual fare this song is given. RaveTesar has a swinging solo at the keyboard.

The jazz world is a better place because of this recording. It has all the attributes that will make even the casual listener take notice.

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morrice.blackwell@gmail.com (John Gilbert) Jazz Vocals - CD Reviews Thu, 17 Mar 2011 01:00:00 -0500
Three Wise Monkeys by Benn Clatworthy http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/bebop-hard-bop-cd-reviews/three-wise-monkeys-by-benn-clatworthy.html http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/bebop-hard-bop-cd-reviews/three-wise-monkeys-by-benn-clatworthy.html Benn Clatworthy is a superb tenor saxophone player (in this era of non-compliance to the jazz idiom). His worthy constituents, Joe Bagg at the Hammond B3 and Don Littleton on drums, round out a first-class jazz group. In the title tune "Three Wise Monkeys," a Clatworthy original, the tenor solo is pure magic. His ideation is not only creative, but carries a message on that horn in a most definitive way. Joe Bagg lays down some great lines, adding a Bird riff most discreetly. Littleton's timing i

Benn Clatworthy is a superb tenor saxophone player (in this era of non-compliance to the jazz idiom). His worthy constituents, Joe Bagg at the Hammond B3 and Don Littleton on drums, round out a first-class jazz group.

In the title tune "Three Wise Monkeys," a Clatworthy original, the tenor solo is pure magic. His ideation is not only creative, but carries a message on that horn in a most definitive way. Joe Bagg lays down some great lines, adding a Bird riff most discreetly. Littleton's timing is like a Rolex watch.

Benn Clatworthy parlays "By the Time I Get to Phoenix" into a jazz classic. His heart and soul is inherent in every note. Bagg comps most adroitly and Littleton adds just the right touch to this now, new song.

"Just Another Addiction" is just that, addictive! Some dark thoughts from Clatworthy who then spins them into a most decisive admonition to someone. His soliloquy is direct and to the point. Bagg's riposte seems to commiserate with the tenor and Littleton adds his advice to an already deep conversation.

"I Cover The Watefront." This is a special tune and it is given special treatment here. This is the sweetest tenor solo that I have heard on this song. I am not ashamed to say that it brought a tear to my eye. Benn Clatworthy has a message and he tells it most adequately. Again, the drums and B3 are in synch with the beauty of this musical missive.

"One For Pete." Pete is one lucky guy to be spoken to in such a manner by a tenor sax. Are you listening Pete? Benn has some important things to say to you. Do you owe him any money? Benn gets serious here. Joe Bagg slides in most gracefully and Don Littleton keeps it all in order. Some interesting 12 bar exchanges between B3 and drums with the tenor admonishing both briefly.

This is an album for the true cognoscenti. A worthy addition to the collection of a true jazz lover.

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morrice.blackwell@gmail.com (John Gilbert) BeBop / Hard Bop - CD Reviews Wed, 16 Mar 2011 07:00:00 -0500
Young And Foolish by Sophie Berkal-Sarbit http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/straight-ahead-classic-cd-reviews/young-and-foolish-by-sophie-berkal-sarbit.html http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/straight-ahead-classic-cd-reviews/young-and-foolish-by-sophie-berkal-sarbit.html Spohie Berkal-Sarbit opens matters on her latest CD, Young and Foolish, with a driving, swinging rendition of "I'm Gonna Live 'til I die." Sperandei's trumpet captures the essence of this arrangement as he twists and turns this tune upside down brilliantly with his rapid fire offerings. This number is a portent of things to come, as it is an ear-catcher from the opening note to the last.With the title song, "Young And Foolish," the ballad side of this seductive vocalist is captured most enchanti

Spohie Berkal-Sarbit opens matters on her latest CD, Young and Foolish, with a driving, swinging rendition of "I'm Gonna Live 'til I die." Sperandei's trumpet captures the essence of this arrangement as he twists and turns this tune upside down brilliantly with his rapid fire offerings. This number is a portent of things to come, as it is an ear-catcher from the opening note to the last.

With the title song, "Young And Foolish," the ballad side of this seductive vocalist is captured most enchantingly. Bill King waxes thoughtfully, a departure from his usual modus operandi. Pitch perfect and a delivery that is most compelling describes this singer in terms exact.

"Why Don't You Do Right" has to be sung in the proper fashion, and believe me, Sophie does it "right" and then some. This writer is hand clapping and foot tapping to this track, and so will you.

Some good advice is inherent in the lyrics to "As Long As You're Living" and Sophie gives it superbly. The trumpet and sax have their say musically with more hip admonitions.

This singer has all the ingredients of what it takes to be a great artist and she utilizes them to the fullest. The band is top notch and the arrangements fit her talents more than adequately. I have no problem giving this album 5 Stars.

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morrice.blackwell@gmail.com (John Gilbert) Straight-Ahead - CD Reviews Sat, 12 Mar 2011 18:00:00 -0600
James Moody by James Moody http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/bebop-hard-bop-cd-reviews/james-moody-by-james-moody.html http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/bebop-hard-bop-cd-reviews/james-moody-by-james-moody.html James Moody passed away today. It would take extraordinary words to adequately describe the genius of this remarkable artist. This album, his last, is a treasure and keepsake for all afficionados of jazz. Moody's phrasing and ideas say a lot about him. In his soliloquys, it's as if he is speaking directly to the listener. BeBop's last hope is gone, but his dominant force lives on in his music. From blazing speed to soulful ballads, James Moody has no peer.With "Take The A Train" Kenny Barron ope

James Moody passed away today. It would take extraordinary words to adequately describe the genius of this remarkable artist. This album, his last, is a treasure and keepsake for all afficionados of jazz. Moody's phrasing and ideas say a lot about him. In his soliloquys, it's as if he is speaking directly to the listener. BeBop's last hope is gone, but his dominant force lives on in his music. From blazing speed to soulful ballads, James Moody has no peer.

With "Take The A Train" Kenny Barron opens matters establishing the melody in a most reflective manner, then Moody leaps in driving this tune like a high speed race car. Kenny Barron, in his time at bat, follows suit, operating and boperating magically. Nash has a most discreet solo and Moody finishes matters in his inimitable style.

"Hot House" Moody's tribute to Tadd Dameron, is pure bop. And anyone who knows your humble correspondent, knows of my affection, admiration and friendship with Dameron. Moody could make any tune swing and this tune has all the ingredients needed.

"Speak Low" speaks volumes in every note played by this quartet.

"Polka Dots and Moonbeams" track is a journey into the land of soul and emotion conveyed by this incomparable musician.

"But Not For Me" finds Kenny Barron and Lewis Nash exchanging 4's. A lovely bass solo follows by Mr. Coolman. Then Moody takes charge, loping along in a foot tapping mode. His message is clear and leaves nothing unsaid.

It would take the ear of Van Gogh not to appreciate this album.

Rest easy Moody.

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morrice.blackwell@gmail.com (John Gilbert) BeBop / Hard Bop - CD Reviews Tue, 22 Feb 2011 00:00:00 -0600
Christmas Dreaming by Susie Arioli http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/holiday-jazz-cd-reviews/christmas-dreaming-by-susie-arioli.html http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/holiday-jazz-cd-reviews/christmas-dreaming-by-susie-arioli.html Here it is the Jazzmas season and Susie Arioli's smoky message comes through with some classy Christmas tunes. "Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas" features a lovely guitar solo by Jordan Officer that complements this touching chestnut to the max. Arioli treats this song like an old friend and that makes the listening even more enjoyable."I'll Be Home For Christmas" evokes memories galore and only emphasizes the idea that Susie Arioli is a true jazz vocalist and should stick to that genre. S

Here it is the Jazzmas season and Susie Arioli's smoky message comes through with some classy Christmas tunes. "Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas" features a lovely guitar solo by Jordan Officer that complements this touching chestnut to the max. Arioli treats this song like an old friend and that makes the listening even more enjoyable.

"I'll Be Home For Christmas" evokes memories galore and only emphasizes the idea that Susie Arioli is a true jazz vocalist and should stick to that genre. She lays it on the line with this song and had this writer mentally playing brushes in accompaniment and that doesn't happen often. Michael Jerome Browne personifies "hip" in his solo and backing and that lends itself superbly to the overall effect.

Susie Arioli is a jazz vocalist in the true sense of the word and should remain in that idiom. Her voice is naturally suited to that mode. I was impressed with the "sound" of Arioli and her treatment of these holiday songs. The tunes were well chosen and the rhythm section was magnificent. This album will transport you back to the time when Christmas was a time of spiritual awakening and emotional uplifting, (not to mention the dusky, sensual vocalizing of this fine artist). Listening to this recording makes Christmas be what it should be, a time of joy and reflection.

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morrice.blackwell@gmail.com (John Gilbert) Holiday Jazz - CD Reviews Wed, 16 Feb 2011 06:00:00 -0600
Jazz Expose: The New York Jazz Museum And The Power Struggle That Destroyed It by Howard E. Fischer http://jazzreview.com/book-reviews/jazz-expose-the-new-york-jazz-museum-and-the-power-struggle-that-destroyed-it-by-howard-e.-fischer.html http://jazzreview.com/book-reviews/jazz-expose-the-new-york-jazz-museum-and-the-power-struggle-that-destroyed-it-by-howard-e.-fischer.html Howard Fischer was the founder and executive director of The N.Y. Jazz Museum from 1977 until its ultimate demise in 1987. Jack Bradley, a writer a...
Howard Fischer was the founder and executive director of The N.Y. Jazz Museum from 1977 until its ultimate demise in 1987. Jack Bradley, a writer and photographer, was also instrumental in its inception and among others its eventual death. A problem that permeates the jazz milieu to this day.

This book will satisfy both the cognoscenti and the fan alike. The information and the news items contained in this 133 page booklet bring the glory days of jazz to life and detail the devious side of the jazz world with all its seaminess laid bare.

In the 70s jazz was scarce in the big apple and a chance meeting with a Frank Bristol who had an interest in starting a "jazz society" Fischer began a journey that would eventually culminate in the establishment of a jazz museum. Thus began a circuitous path to a venue that presented a membership program a sales shop film programs tours in the U.S. and overseas a monthly jazz newsletter and most importantly live jazz programs. Fischer was funded by Seagrams and the Ford Foundation for these endeavors.

Every major figure on the scene made an appearance at the Jazz Museum from the bop tap dancing genius of Baby Laurence (who on occasion did exchanges with Charlie Parker in other venues) to Ellington Basie Billie Holiday Benny Goodman most of these artists also donated memorabilia and personal items for display.

Throughout this book the news items that were published in the N.Y. Times the Village Voice and other leading pubs about the goings on at the museum are interspersed freely on the pages of this historical treatise.

This informative and lively discourse on the rise and fall of a wonderful idea that collapsed in a freefall of infighting is a fascinating study of both the joy of jazz and the shady side of the business of business.

Howard Fischer's dream bore a brief fruition and and a quarrelsome unfortunate end.

The true music lover will find this book the ultimate inside story of the top jazz musicians of the era and the sad ending of an wonderful idea extinguished by infighting and jealousy.

I hate to repeat an old clich? but this is a must read for scholars and jazz buffs alike.'This informative and lively discourse on the rise and fall of a wonderful idea that collapsed in a freefall of infighting is a fascinating study of both the joy of jazz and the shady side of the business of business.

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morrice.blackwell@gmail.com (John Gilbert) Book Reviews Mon, 19 Jan 2004 18:00:00 -0600