Friday, April 10, 2020

Tom Szczesniak – Waltz For Bill

Toronto based pianist, composer, arranger and producer Tom Szczesniak has released his debut recording as leader; Waltz For Bill, an eleven track, straight ahead...

Vanessa Perea: Soulful Days

Vanessa Perea might have a particular flair for the theatrical. This is suggested by the manner of her phrasing. Ms. Perea is able to...

Helen Sung: Anthem for a New Day

Helen Sung’s pianism is informed by elegance and an intellect that goes far beyond her young years. Both qualities cannot be learnt. The former...
Michael Simon - Asian Connection

Michael Simon: Asian Connection

It’s easy sometimes to forget that the extraordinarily-gifted trumpeter and flugelhorn-player Michael Simon came from Venezuela. He has been making a living out of...

Ayako Shirasaki – Some Other Time

I had the pleasure of discovering Ayako Shirasaki’s music when I wrote a review for her previous album recorded live in Hamburg. For those...
Joey Alexander - Countdown

Joey Alexander Presents: Countdown

Once more, Joey Alexander puts all of his debonair virtuosity on display, on Countdown, only his second album. The quality of his playing is...

Wadada Leo Smith – Ten Freedom Summers

The voice of a committed artist—the only one worth considering—has always been one of protest against the ennui of the established order. Sometimes this voice is quiet, almost silent; at other times it is strident...

Ark Ovrutski: 44:33

Two years after he released Sounds of Brasil (Self Published, 2010) bassist Ark Ovrutski has graced music with a fine new album, 44:33. Numbers...

Joe Lovano & the Brussels Jazz Orchestra: Wild Beauty

It is just like tenor saxophonist Joe Lovano to make a beautiful recording, but also one which is also quite full of surprises. This...

Denny Zeitlin Trio: Stairway to the Stars

Stairway To The Stars by Denny Zeitlin There is almost no one musician playing today who can deconstruct a standard and then put it back...

Gerry Gibbs, Ron Carter, Kenny Barron: Gerry Gibbs Thrasher Dream Trio

Gerry Gibbs’ album Gerry Gibbs Thrasher Dream Trio truly lives up to its name. Not only are bassist Ron Carter and pianist Kenny Barron...
Gretchen Parlato - Live in NYC

Gretchen Parlato: Live in NYC

It is hard to listen to Gretchen Parlato without hearing something celestial in her singing. To be sure, she sings in a jazz idiom...
Andrea Brachfeld - If Not Now, When?

Andrea Brachfeld: If Not Now, When?

The flutist Andrea Brachfeld has made a glittering career for herself on the Latin Jazz circuit, including performances with Dave Valentin and significant recordings...

Monty Alexander: The Harlem-Kingston Express Comes Alive

There might be a gentleman’s argument as to whom the pianist Monty Alexander belongs to; Jamaica, where he was born, or New York where...

Stacey Kent: The Changing Lights

There are few vocalists who can sing with such fragrant lyricism as Stacey Kent. The fact that she can sing in several languages—and make...

Phill Fest: That’s What She Says

The rhythmic intricacies of Brasilian music are just one aspect of that metaphor. Then there is that beautiful concept of a feeling called alegria....
The Seasons - Manuel Valera Trio

Manuel Valera Trio: The Seasons

Was there a closet ‘renaissance man’ just waiting to jump out of Manuel Valera? Probably so, but although his recording of The Seasons references...

Fabián Almazán: Master of All He Plays

In most musicians, just like nice ordinary people, molecules are made up of DNA just like the unique people that each is. But in...
Ralph Peterson, Zaccai Curtis, Luques Curtis - Triangular III

Ralph Peterson, Zaccai Curtis, Luques Curtis: Triangular III

When the Curtis Brothers take a break from business to make music together something magical always happens. On Triangular III they complete a trio...

Phil Bowler: Phil Bowler & Pocket Jungle

While no one was watching the bass chair Phil Bowler slipped back in and fired up his old ensemble back to life. After some...