Archive for March, 2009

Will Sellenraad – Balance (2009)

by Pico Will Sellenraad is a member of a newer generation of jazz musicians who have that ability to fold in elements of rock, soul and folk into jazz without diluting the jazz component at all. His guitar playing style has a full, rounded tone that can best be described as unaffected, reserved passion. It shows the influence of twoRead More

Download: Marcus Roberts' "New Orleans Meets Harlem, Vol. 1"

Download: Marcus Roberts' "New Orleans Meets Harlem, Vol. 1"

NICK DERISO: With “New Orleans Meets Harlem,” pianist Marcus Roberts explores the connections between two of jazz music’s most elemental tributaries — building on familiar ideas put in place by Jelly Roll Morton, Fats Waller, Scott Joplin, Duke Ellington and Thelonious Monk. The record, Roberts’ first in eight years, hits the streets on Tuesday, March 31, and features bassist RolandRead More

One Track Mind: Roger Hodgson, "My Magazine" (1987)

One Track Mind: Roger Hodgson, "My Magazine" (1987)

Like Paul or Ringo, Roger Hodgson will forever be associated with his former band no matter much good music he’s made since he left the group. Granted, Hodgson never quite generated any more note-perfect pop standards such as “Give A Little Bit” or “The Logical Song” from his Supertramp days, but that’s not to say he’s lost his touch. Rather,Read More

The Dave Fox Group featuring Bruce Eisenbeil – Home Again (2008)

The Dave Fox Group featuring Bruce Eisenbeil – Home Again (2008)

by S. Victor Aaron Dave Fox teaches piano courses at Greensboro College in North Carolina, but the stuff he’s puttin’ down with his combo The Dave Fox Group couldn’t be any more opposite of what you’d find in a classroom setting. It simply has too much panache for formal academic study. The DFG, consisting of Fox on various keyboards, JonRead More

Wynton Marsalis – He and She (2009)

Wynton Marsalis – He and She (2009)

NICK DERISO: “He and She,” trumpeter Wynton Marsalis’ fifth Blue Note recording, is a toe-tapping celebration, a cautionary tale and a loving requiem for the journey that passion takes. There’s poetry in the playing but, perhaps unfortunately, also actual poetry. “He and She,” recorded live over a two-day period and minimally edited, features a heady mix of New Orleans streetRead More

Harvie S with Kenny Barron – Now Was The Time (2008)

Finally, a musician with a one-letter last name I can actually embrace. Harvie S was the rock-solid bassist who firmly anchored Linda Presgrave’s completely enjoyable Inspiration CD, released last month. It’s only the latest notch in a long career that’s found S paired with such legends as John Scofield, Stan Getz, Chet Baker, Dexter Gordon, Jim Hall, Michael Brecker, GilRead More

The Beauty Room – The Beauty Room (2006)

The Beauty Room – The Beauty Room (2006)

by S. Victor Aaron I remember once or twice seeing the seventies folk-rock band America on one or two lists of most despised bands, and that always puzzled me. So what if the music is soft, my way of thinking goes, if the vocals are rich, the melodies robust and the production is clean? The Beauty Room is not quiteRead More

Return To Forever – Returns (2009)

Return To Forever – Returns (2009)

NICK DERISO: Pianist Chick Corea’s then-shocking turn into jazz populism with Return to Forever in the 1970s was as commercially successful as it was different from intelligent, straight-ahead efforts like his superlative “The Song of Singing.” And over, just like that. By 1977, save for a brief series of concerts in 1983, the band had splintered into solo careers. CouldRead More

LA Funk Brass Band – Bootleg, Vol. 1 (2009)

LA Funk Brass Band – Bootleg, Vol. 1 (2009)

NICK DERISO: A crazy collision between the brassy sound of Rebirth and the great grooves of Parliament Funkadelic, LA Funk Brass Band is a party actually taking place on the bandstand. That makes sense, considering this funky roadhouse choir features a rotating set of 50-or-so performers with roots from northeastern Louisiana down to the Crescent City. Past associations provide aRead More

Mike Marshall, Alex Hargreaves, Paul Kowert – Mike Marshall's Big Trio (2009)

Mike Marshall, Alex Hargreaves, Paul Kowert – Mike Marshall's Big Trio (2009)

by Pico As an acclaimed maestro on a variety of stringed instruments (violin, mandolin, guitar) Mike Marshall can call upon just about anyone in the field of progressive bluegrass to accompany him on an album. For his fresh-out-of-the-oven album Mike Marshall’s Big Trio, he sticks with acoustic guitar and enlists the help of young men who by appearances seemed betterRead More

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