Michael Shea - jazzreview.com - Your Jazz Music Connection - jazzreview.com - Your Jazz Music Connection http://jazzreview.com Tue, 23 May 2017 07:56:32 -0500 Joomla! - Open Source Content Management en-gb I Feel Ya by Ron James http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/contemporary-jazz-cd-reviews/i-feel-ya-by-ron-james.html http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/contemporary-jazz-cd-reviews/i-feel-ya-by-ron-james.html I Feel Ya is the debut CD from saxophonist Ron James. All but one of the ten cuts on the CD were written by Ron, demonstrating his talent as both a composer and sa…
I Feel Ya is the debut CD from saxophonist Ron James. All but one of the ten cuts on the CD were written by Ron, demonstrating his talent as both a composer and sax player. On every song Ron would hit those screeching high sax notes and it really grated on my nerves and tinnitus tainted ears. When I played the CD my wife asked me to "turn it down" or "shut the door." I’m not sure why I continued to listen to the CD when it bothered me so much. But the more I listened, the more I liked it, and in the end I found myself performing some of the songs in my head during the day. And, best of all, it turned out those high notes were only in a few of the songs! The CD has a nice mix of melodic cuts and funky grooves. Several of the cuts, I Feel Ya, In a State, Talk to Me, and Prep Time are the kinds of tunes that make me want to bop, while One of those Days, Lullaby, Schiniese, and Morning Sunset are all beautiful, tender songs. If you like saxophone, I Feel Ya will be a nice addition to your music collection.
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morrice.blackwell@gmail.com (Michael Shea) Contemporary Jazz - CD Reviews Mon, 16 Apr 2007 07:00:00 -0500
Outro Rio (Another River) by Ricardo Silveira http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/brazilian-jazz-brazilian-pop-jazz-cd-reviews/outro-rio-another-river-by-ricardo-silveira.html http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/brazilian-jazz-brazilian-pop-jazz-cd-reviews/outro-rio-another-river-by-ricardo-silveira.html Outro Rio (Another River) is Ricardo Silveria’s 3rd release for Adventure Music and a powerful encore to his last solo, Noite Clara, which was nominate…

Outro Rio (Another River) is Ricardo Silveria’s 3rd release for Adventure Music and a powerful encore to his last solo, Noite Clara, which was nominated for a Latin Grammy as Best Instrumental Recording of 2004.

Outro Rio showcases Ricardo’s virtuosity on guitar and his talent as an arranger, producer, and composer. According to his website, Ricardo was born in Rio and grew up listening to bossa nova, samba and the rhythms of carnaval. He began seriously studying guitar at age sixteen. Ricardo attended the Berklee College of Music in Boston, where he made long-lasting friendships with fellow guitarists Pat Metheny and Bill Frisel. While at Berklee he played in the clubs of Boston and traveled often to New York to record and perform with artists like Herbie Mann, Sonny Fortune and Jon Hassell. After moving to New York he joined Mann's band and toured with him for several years. After returning to Brazil, Ricardo became one of Rio's most requested studio guitarists and has been recording his own material since 1985.

Listeners who like the gentle sound of an acoustic nylon-string guitar playing in the bossa nova style are going to love this CD. All arrangements (except one) are backed by acoustic bass and drums, with an occasional piano or horn mixed in. One song, A Medida Do Meu Coracão features Maria Rita on vocal. The songs are all tasteful, slightly melancholy, and easy to listen to. You can’t go wrong with this beautiful CD, even my wife raved about it!

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morrice.blackwell@gmail.com (Michael Shea) Brazilian Jazz / Brazilian Pop Jazz - CD Reviews Wed, 04 Apr 2007 13:00:00 -0500
One Summer in Winters by Jeff Alkire http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/cool-jazz-cd-reviews/one-summer-in-winters-by-jeff-alkire.html http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/cool-jazz-cd-reviews/one-summer-in-winters-by-jeff-alkire.html One Summer in Winters by Jeff Alkire
Listening to the title tune on saxophonist Jeff Alkire’s latest release, One Summer in Winters, it’s easy to imagine Jeff sitting on a hillside playing to a her…

Listening to the title tune on saxophonist Jeff Alkire’s latest release, One Summer in Winters, it’s easy to imagine Jeff sitting on a hillside playing to a herd of deer. Jeff conceived the melody for the song while sitting on a hill near Winters, California. However, that’s where the idyllic analogy ends. Winters is a small, rural, farming town; the rest of the CD sounds anything but.

Listening to One Summer in Winters reminds me of sitting at a bistro table in a small, dark jazz club. The music has that smoky, mellow, late night jazz sound.

Jeff wrote four of the nine cuts. Seven cuts feature a combination of Jeff Alkire on alto sax, Craig Bailey on flute, Kelvin Sholar on piano, and Riley Mullins on trumpet. The bottom is impeccably maintained by Esperanza Spalding on bass and Steve Johns on drums.

Of the other two cuts, "All the Things You Are" is performed by a trio of Jeff Alkire, Darek Oles on bass, and Lorca Hart on drums and includes nice standup bass and drum solos. On "Panama," Jeff is accompanied by Chuck MacKinnon on trumpet, Art Hirahara on piano, Chris Lightcap on bass, and Allison Miller on drums.

I like this CD a lot. Check it out!

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morrice.blackwell@gmail.com (Michael Shea) Cool Jazz - CD Reviews Fri, 12 Jan 2007 12:00:00 -0600
Forever, For Always, For Luther Volume II by Various Artists http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/smooth-jazz-cd-reviews/forever-for-always-for-luther-volume-ii-by-various-artists.html http://jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/smooth-jazz-cd-reviews/forever-for-always-for-luther-volume-ii-by-various-artists.html Forever, For Always, For Luther Volume II is a tribute album to Luther Vandross, who died in 2005 at the age of 54, possibly due to complications from an earlie…

Forever, For Always, For Luther Volume II is a tribute album to Luther Vandross, who died in 2005 at the age of 54, possibly due to complications from an earlier stroke. All the songs on the album had previously been recorded by Vandross, so some will sound familiar to listeners. There is a mix of instrumentals and vocal arrangements, up-tempo tunes and soulful ballads, each song featuring a different artist.

The CD starts off with an enthusiastic version of "Give Me The Reason," with Kirk Whalum on tenor, alto and soprano sax, followed by a nice interchange of Norman Brown’s guitar and Everette Harp’s sax on "‘Till My Baby Comes Home." The next three tunes, "There’s Nothing Better Than Love," "For You To Love" and "If This World Were Mine," pursue a mellow groove. The music then picks up the tempo in "The Glow of Love." Then we head back to mellow with "So Amazing" sung by Patti Austin. "The Night I Fell In Love" falls into nice groove, followed by some smooth vocals and guitar work by Jonathan Butler, who sounds a lot like Stevie Wonder on "Don’t Want To Be A Fool." The CD ends with a nice version of the familiar "Superstar."

I recommend this CD for someone planning a romantic evening at home.

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morrice.blackwell@gmail.com (Michael Shea) Smooth Jazz - CD Reviews Sun, 09 Jul 2006 01:00:00 -0500