A few notes for the show, Monday, September 5, 2011 6-8 PM PT...
The great bassist Ron Carter will be chatting about his new release "Great Big Band" in Hour 2 of The New! What an honor! We added the disc last week, August 29, 2011. Over 2,000 albums, 45 years recording, Miles Davis, Eric Dolphy, Lena Horne, James Brown, Bill Evans, Tribe Called Quest...and now his first big band album!
About.com (Jacob Teichroew): Augmented Reality is lush and yet subtle, and with a range of
stylistic influences, it achieves a sophisticated, understated presence.
It is exciting to imagine how the music will sound as the band grows
more seasoned around it, begins to take bigger risks while continuing to
use melody as its inspiration.
CHRISTIAN FABIAN – “WEST COAST SESSION” (Bassist, leading a core trio, with all-star guests, doing straight-ahead originals and jazz tunes).
AllAboutJazz.com (Larry Taylor): With the release of her fifth album, Embraceable, vocalist Nicole Henry pleasingly brings together a range of styles—smooth and mainstream jazz, along with pop and gospel. Henry's stated mission with this record is to take large steps in new
directions, and she accomplishes this with a sweet, accessible voice
that serves up lyrical ballads, as well as dishing out large helpings of
soulful blues and gospel.
The Jazz Word: Jake Hertzog, now with a handful of recordings under his belt, is one of
the very few prolific young guitarists to convincingly embrace the
potential of blending a jazz and rock style of performing. What stands
out in Hertzog's playing, aside from a comprehensive knowledge of his
instrument, is a willingness, regardless of style, to put it all on the
TIM MAYER – “RESILIENCE” (Saxophonist, with many all-star guests, doing a collection of straight-ahead jazz tunes).
Mitch's Muse: Mayer's platter swings from the get-go. A few tracks have additional players
for a richer sound-a bit plush, a hair away from lush, with thoughtful
yet vigorous arrangements in the vein of Tadd Dameron, Don Sebesky, and
pre-1965 Gil Evans.
JOSH NELSON (FB)– “DISCOVERIES” (Pianist, leading a variety of configurations, doing all but one straight-ahead originals).
Critical Jazz: Cerebral
jazz? In an incredibly unique if not personal release, Nelson takes his
appreciation for the writings of Jules Verne among others and
transforms this literature into a conceptualized presentation of sonic
imagery that lives and breathes on its own. An incredibly thoughtful
organic pulse drives the forward motion of this sonic adventure with
great care and artistic touch. Nelson's
music is (for me) not Ipod friendly, no good jazz worth listening to
is. "Discoveries" contains intricate and involved interplay between
Nelson and his musical companions that is exciting, fresh and alive to
the point where mere headphones could not possibly transfer the musical
CDBaby: On this outing, Bob Shimizu
has shown real bravery by not allowing the influence of the Smooth Jazz
broadcast idiom's whimsical rules or, the tradition and "commandments"
of the Jazz Police to alter the musical vision. Bob Shimizu has simply
recorded a true contemporary jazz record in the most honest sense and,
most importantly, he's simply made great music!
TIERNEY SUTTON – “AMERICAN ROAD” (Female vocalist, doing a mix of show tunes, gospel and Americana).
Critical Jazz: Organic but deep rooted in tradition this exquisite release is perfect from start to finish."...take on her own unique, slightly eclectic but incredibly accessible spin
on the Great American Songbook thus releasing an almost instant
classic." Challenge Records: “We first started looking at an ‘America’-themed CD three or four years
ago,” says Sutton, whose vocal style has been described as “soft as silk
and smooth as fine bourbon” by the Chicago Sun Times. Circumstances led
the group in a different direction at the time, the result being 2009’s
Desire, which earned the group its third consecutive Grammy nomination
for Best Vocal Jazz Album.
But the concept that gave ultimately
gave rise to American Road stayed with Sutton and the band—Christian
Jacob (piano), Kevin Axt (acoustic and electric bass), Trey Henry
(acoustic and electric bass) and Ray Brinker (drums and
percussion)—until, having spent countless days and nights traveling
America’s roads and playing in her towns and cities, they were able to
finally bring it to fruition. All of the arrangements on American Road
were conceived by the entire band, which, said The New York Times, has
“refined the kind of rapport that could only be achieved over
time…providing a continuous flow of support, strength and inspiration.”
BILLY WHITE – “FIRST THINGS FIRST” (Straight-ahead octet, doing all originals).
AllAboutJazz.com (Dan Bilawsky): First Things First is as apt a name for a debut album as
anybody could come up with. While this marks pianist Billy White's first
leader date, he already has plenty of impressive musical experience
under his belt: spending his college years earning a degree in
ethnomusicology from UCLA; working with a jazz/hip-hop hybrid group
Heezbus, while living in Paris; studying Gnawa trance music in Morocco;
and writing some music for films. Eventually, the San Francisco native
landed in Brooklyn, NY and began focusing his attention on writing and
playing piano. This album is the fruit of that labor and it's rife with
exciting compositions and strong group interplay.
CHIP WHITE – “More DEDICATIONS” (Drummer, leading an all-star band, doing his originals, with a disc of poetry included).
CDBaby: This recording is Chip’s
fourth as a leader and composer. The others are "Harlem Sunset"
(Postcards, 1994), "Music and Lyrics" (Dark Colors, 2005), and "Double
Dedication" (Dark Colors, 2008). The poems on Chip’s CDs come from his
book of more than 100 poems for famous jazz musicians, "I’m Just the
Drummer in the Band."
8-29-2011 Adds To The Jazz 88 Music Library including NEW Ron Carter Great Big Band (his first ever big band leader date), Claudia Roditi, University of North Texas Lab Band 2011, Ernie Watts, Kenny Werner w/Orch, and more!
Norman David of the Eleventet (great new disc added last week) interview in Hour 2
Cheryl Pyle, Jazz / Metal Flutist (give that a chance to roll around in your head) will be releasing her second disc of 2011 "Soul Dust" soon, so we'll chat with her about that and her earlier 2011 release Inside Dialogue
ARMEN DONELIAN – “LEAPFROG” (Pianist, leading a quintet, doing all originals, very edgy).
AllAboutJazz.com (Dan Bilawski): While cohesion and individuality, by their very definitions, may seem to be at odds with one another, the music on Leapfrog
reconciles these two opposing ideals without a problem. For his ninth
date on the Sunnyside label, pianist Armen Donelian has together a
program of strikingly modern originals that showcase the cutting edge
talent and simpatico sensibilities of his band. Leapfrog proves to be light years beyond many other albums that
wear the modern jazz label, because the individual contributions and
the confluence of the group are of equal value, and Donelian deserves
plaudits for balancing that equation and producing such a work.
KYLE EASTWOOD – “SCENES FROM THE CHATEAU” (Bassist, leading a straight-ahead session, with funky undertones).
AllAboutJazz.com (Bruce Lindsay): yle Eastwood's career encompasses the writing of film soundtracks, as
well as the life of a jazz composer, bandleader and bassist. On those
seemingly rare occasions when he isn't working, Eastwood spends much of
his time in France. Songs From The Chateau is his fifth album since 1998's debut, From There To Here
(Sony), and his fourth for British Candid label. It finds Eastwood
recording in the country he loves, at the 15th century Chateau
Couronneau in the Bordeaux region. The range of styles is wide, demonstrating the influences from across
the world that Eastwood has absorbed into his writing and playing. It's full of strong compositions from Eastwood, and virtuoso playing
from every musician, but never feels forced, or competitive: no
showboating, no unnecessary technical complexity.
FLUTEUS MAXIMUMS – “ONE SESSION-ONE TAKE” (Funky versions of many familiar songs). CDBaby: 16 songs were recorded in 4 hours, live, in a tiny, one room studio in northern California. All songs were done in one take including Hammond B3 (dubbed in the same session).
BIELLO/WEYAND – “FOURTHOUGHT’ (A quartet, doing mostly originals. Way out sax solos deem it appropriate for nights only).
DAN JACOBS QUINTET – “PLAYSONG” (Trumpet-led ensemble, doing a mix of tunes, straight-ahead).
JAZZ LINKS ENSEMBLE – “THE DRIVE” (Ensemble of the Jazz Institute of Chicago, doing a collection of jazz tunes).
CDBaby: This two year labor of love
features an ensemble of the next generation of jazz performers whose
debut on this CD project is just the beginning. "The Drive" aptly titled
after one of the original compositions on the CD, signifies what it
takes to be a young jazz performer. The selected tunes exemplify the
passion of these young musicians for this ageless music. Accompanied by
Producer and Mentor for the project, Robert (Baabe) Irving, III; with
Ari Brown and Corey Wilkes on some numbers, the performers not only had
an opportunity to "shine" but to do so along-side world renowned Jazz
VINCENT LYN – “HEAVEN BOUND” (Pianist, leading a variety of ensembles, doing an eclectic mix of jazz, latin and classical).
Heaven Bound: indeed, what an appropriate choice of words to
title pianist Vincent Lyn's project. The album is a wonderful
collection of jazz, bossa nova, samba, Afro-Cuban rhythms and delicate
classical interpretations. The fourteen-piece repertoire is an even
blend of melody-rich originals and well-chosen, uncommon jazz standards.
The music is engaging, sophisticated and highly pleasurable from start
to finish, with no fillers, as every tune is a keeper and deserving of
Lyn is an interesting professional,
whose love for music does not really define the person behind it. Lyn is
a martial arts expert—a Kung-Fu star and teacher with his own academy—a
kickboxing champion, model and Hong Kong film star, with nineteen
movies to his credit. But music has always been one of his first loves.
and to that end Lyn honed his skills through studies at the renowned
Boston Conservatory of Music, Yale University Music School and Manhattan
School of Music.
FRANCISCO MELA & CUBAN SAFARI – “TREE OF LIFE” (Progressive session, featuring a couple of vocals by Esperanza Spalding).
JazzTimes.com: Drummer Francisco Mela presents his second release on Half Note, a tour-de-force featuring 10 newly conceived compositions. With the help of his band, Cuban Safari, Mela offers a passionate fusion of Cuban polyrhythms and propulsive modernism. Renown for his play with Joe Lovanoʼs Us Five, Mela and the full scope of his musicianship take center stage with an unexpected turn as a vocalist, duetting with pianist Elio Villafranca, and trading improvs with Special Guest Esperanza Spalding. Tree Of Life is spirited evidence of Melaʼs distinguished place among young group leaders.
JASON RASO – “THE RED ARROW” (Guitarist/bassist, leading a variety of ensembles in a straight- ahead session).
EarShot (Shelley Gummeson): It has been said Jason Raso has a jazz head and a funk heart. The two have been introduced in The Red Arrow. Jay comments on the duality, “The head can sometimes play games and push you away from some things. I still want a groove and my hope is that those two sides continue to blend.”
GREG REITAN (FB)– “DAYBREAK” (Nice, straight-ahead, jazz piano trio).
Critical Jazz: "Daybreak" is the third release for Reitan on the Sunnyside label whose artistry may be best compared as a musical frame of refernce to a cross between Keith Jarrett and Dave Grusin. Subtle nuances on a grand scale. This small yet mighty trio gives us something new with each subsequent spin of the disc.
CLAUDIO RODITI – “BONS AMIGOS” (Nice straight-ahead release from this trumpeter, with brazilian undertones).
AllAboutJazz.com (Andrew J. Sammut): Roditi's high note displays and mixing board effects sound as though he's smiling from behind the horn. He's having fun and is not out to impress. Claudio Roditi and his amigos don't have to worry about showing off, unless warmth, melody and humor sound intimidating.
ERNIE WATTS – “ALIVE” (Saxophonist, recorded live in Europe, with his quartet, doing originals and couple of jazz standards).
ErnieWatts.com: (2004) Released on Watts' own Flying Dolphin label, ALIVE begins a new chapter for the artist. "This is my first recording where I had complete control," notes Watts, "All the creative decisions were mine, from the tunes to the final mix. That freedom produced this CD. It shows who I really am as a musician."
JazzTimes: "The Brussels Jazz Orchestra (BJO), led by founder and Artistic Director Frank Vaganée, once again reinforces its reputation as one of Europe’s premier big bands, a group that “manifests love,” according to Grammy-winning arranger Maria Schneider. Kenny Werner and the BJO have joined forces to create the perfect canvas for Wernerʼs lush compositions and arrangements. TheInstitute of Higher Learning features 5 tracks, among them the opening “Cantabile,” a three-movement suite showcasing Wernerʼs progressive touch. It was inspired by and dedicated to Bob Brookmeyer. Liner notes by Maria Schneider."
JACK WILKINS – “THE BLUE & GREEN PROJECT” (Saxophonist, doing great straight-ahead interpretations of American roots music).
JazzLoft: This project involved researching Appalachian Mountain culture and environment as the inspiration for a series of new compositions, which combine the musical inspiration of American roots music—blues, gospel, jazz, mountain music, New Orleans traditions—with the subjective inspiration of Appalachian Mountains. Jack Wilkins is the Director of Jazz Studies at the University of South Florida in Tampa. An accomplished jazz saxophonist, he has released two CDs as a leader and appears as a sideman on a number of other jazz and commercial recordings.
Here's what's going into the New section of the Jazz 88 Music Library this next week and will be debuted during The New Jazz Thing on Monday, August 22, 2011, 6-8PM PT...Tune In!!. It's all about the New!
LAILA BIALI (@LailaBiali, FB)- "TRACING LIGHT" (Female vocalist/pianist, with a straight-ahead mix of standards, obscure tunes and originals).
Israbox: "Laila Biali has had quite a year – a new gig as backing vocalist with Sting, a new baby and now a new CD. Tracing Light is the third solo album for the Vancouver-raised, Toronto- and New York-based performer and composer." NORMAN DAVID & THE ELEVENTET (FB)- "AT THIS TIME" (Large ensemble, doing all straight-ahead originals).
Free MP3 AllAboutJazz.com: "David has been leading this group for a few years, and as they find their groove and release their first CD, At This Time
(Norman David/Coolcraft, 2011), they are deservedly being heard all
over the Delaware Valley and beyond. They deliver a relentlessly
swinging and ear-popping sound while at the same time offering nuances,
subtleties, and creative ideas that generate interest for the more
serious listener. David's lightly leavened "emcee" persona is deceptive,
dissimulating as a somewhat shy suburban outcast, with wry humor so bad
that it's good. Thus, it's a shock at first to hear how well this band
delivers its grooving sophisticated sounds. David, known also as a
clarinetist, plays a mean soprano sax with this band, while contributing
superb arrangements of originals and standards that evoke echoes of
great predecessors (for example, the Maynard Ferguson band, as well as shades of Duke Ellington, Glenn Miller, and the Gerry Mulligan
Concert Jazz Band, perhaps its closest ancestral cousin), while
maintaining a distinct sound of its own. That sound has the precision,
timing, and expression of a small group along with the dynamic energy of
a big band."
Digital Jazz News: Sammy spent roughly two decades in New York working with the likes of
Miles Davis and Sonny Rollins with whom he is currently touring. One day
Sammy decided to roll the musical dice and he headed to South Florida.
Figueroa landed firmly in the middle of one of the hottest Latin jazz
scenes anywhere which naturally jump started his musical creativity
which has earned the two Grammy nominations previously mentioned and
with this release perhaps the third time will indeed be the charm! MIKE GARSON (@MikeGarson, FB) - "THE BOWIE VARIATIONS" (Nice solo interpretations of the music of David Bowie, for whom Mike used to play).
Independent Ethos - Mike Garson talks about David Bowie Variations (interview with Hans Morgenstern: "I had been thinking about the Bowie album for a very long time, and I
was thinking of doing it as a jazz treatment with a band and guitar and
sax, but that didn’t feel good. I was thinking of doing covers with a
lot of great singers I worked with, and that didn’t fly for me. So each
time I’d let it go for months and months. I even talked, 10 years ago,
to Tony Visconti
[a longtime producer of Bowie’s albums] about a concept, and he was
into it, but some record company at the time, I don’t know who they
were, they didn’t have the budget I was looking for, and I was not going
to do it with a small budget. It had to be done right. Then, a good
friend of mine who’s a journalist in France and also a singer/songwriter
and has written a book on David Bowie, his name is Jérôme Soligny,
he said, ‘Mike, the obvious thing is playing solo piano. Just play the
music how you feel,’ and I said, ‘Jesus, why didn’t I think of something
so simple?’” (laughs).So it’s a very honest album, Hans … because that’s all I do. I’m an improvising musician." GIACOMO GATES - "THE REVOLUTION WILL BE JAZZ" (Vocalist, with straight-ahead interpretations of the music of Gil Scott-Heron).
Jazz Wax (Marc Myers): You listen to this album and it could easily have been recorded
in 1964. Giacomo brings a Greenwich Village feel to this music—the
summer strum of acoustic guitars in Washington Square, the gentle energy
of Vespa scooters and the toy-like grind of the old VW Bug engine
accelerating at a traffic-light change.
Amazon.com: For their second Half Note issue, the power trio of Donald Harrison, Ron
Carter and Billy Cobham declare themselves spokesman for a kind of
exploratory improvisation and interplay known only to seasoned jazz
professionals. Staunch individualists all, they come together with a
unified voice - at once steeped in jazz's richly variegated traditions
yet forward-thinking in the cause of new creative expression. The group
play here is all about a stylized vision of call and response, featuring
guys with excellent listening skills and the means to keep the
ROGER HUMPHRIES - "KEEP THE FAITH" (Drummer, leading mostly a quintet, in a straight-ahead session).
CDUniverse: "It's not about me. It's about the music,"
says Roger Humphries. "I've had the idea to do this album for a long
time. It was just a matter of getting the right tunes and the right
flow." The album is entitled "Keep the Faith" and appropriately reflects
Roger's deep and abiding respect for the musical gift he has and his
ability to share that gift with others. His name and his musical
reputation as a national and international icon are why we as a
listening audience or fellow musicians understand Roger when he says,
"It's about the music."
CDBaby: The CITYSCAPE album is like a
musical tour through the neighborhoods of a major city. THE WALK is a
jazz-rock piece with a catchy melody and a good beat. SPENDING TIME WITH
YOU is an upbeat Bossa Nova with a good hook. You will find yourself
singing this melody. GLIDING is a Jazz Waltz that is free-flowing
similar to a bird soaring through the air. BAJA CALIENTE is Hot, Hot,
Hot. This Latin Jazz piece makes you want to get up and dance. CITY
LIGHTS is a Straight Ahead jazz piece that gives you the feel of going
out for a night on the town. SANTA MONICA SUMMER is a Bossa Nova with a
happy sound that feels a summer vacation. LONELY CITY has a haunting
melody and beat. It gives you the feeling of being alone in a new city
and not knowing anybody yet. BLUES FOR DARLENE is not really a blues but
rather an upbeat Samba that is sure to have you dancing in your seat.
WALKIN' THE PARK is just what the title says like a walk in the park.
This Reggae-Swing piece will have you visualizing a day in the park with
all of the families having picnics and enjoying the day. TIME SQUARE is
like a trip back into the city with all the hustle and bustle you might
find in Time Square. FUNKIT is a funk tune that sounds like it could
have come out of the 70's, it's got a good strong beat that's sure to
get you moving. LA CABANA is a Bolaro that was written on a beach in
Mexico during a vacation. SWINGADELIC (FB, YouTube) - "THE OTHER DUKE-TRIBUTE TO DUKE PEARSON" (Big band versions of Duke Pearson compositions).
AllAboutJazz.com (Dan Bilawsky): Another Duke served as an A&R man for Blue Note records from 1963 to
1971, performed as a sideman on piano on a slew of recordings for the
label during this period, wrote such classics as "Cristo Redentor" and
"Idle Moments," and released a string of fabulous, but underappreciated
recordings under his own name. This Duke often gets slighted or
overlooked, but not this time." "The genesis for this project was bassist Dave Post's love for Pearson's
music, but the entire band and its regular audience at Maxwell's in
Hoboken, New Jersey, had no trouble buying into the pianist's
compositions, so an album-length tribute seemed to be in order." CEDAR WALTON (FB)- "THE BOUNCER" (Pianist, leading a quintet, in another solid straight-ahead session, doing mostly originals).
BBC (Martin Longley): The Bouncer "is totally not a security guy," says Cedar Walton, the venerable 77-year-old Texan jazz-pianist who’s played beside John Coltrane, Max Roach and Art Blakey.
This latest documentation of his art opens with a title-track that’s
spirited and, yes, bounces along with a bright, airily optimistic
swagger, rippling with ebullient horns. This is how Walton's using the
term, and his description remains apt for the entire disc. MIGUEL ZENON (FB, @MiguelZenon, YouTube )- "ALMA ADENTRO: THE PUERTO RICAN SONGBOOK" (Saxophonist, doing mostly latin tunes, with some orchestral backing).Schedule: Playing UCSD in November! AllAboutJazz.com (Dan Bilawsky): While calling somebody a "star" in jazz might seem like an oxymoron,
when considering the lower-than-deserved profile of the genre on the
national and international stages, Zenon fits the bill like few others.
As of the recording of this 2011 album, Zenon, only in his early
thirties, has already carved out a place as one of the defining
saxophone voices of his generation. Having already received a Guggenheim
Fellowship and MacArthur Fellowship (a.k.a. the "genius grant") at such
an early age, some feel that he has been wrongfully fast-tracked in a
genre where the experience of elders is usually prized over the
enthusiasm and creative spirit of youth; but his solo albums and
continuing work with the SFJAZZ Collective, as the only remaining
charter member of that groundbreaking group, have confirmed how
deserving he really is of all of the positive press, awards and honors
that have been thrust upon him.