A new release by a Chicago-based outfit headed by tenor saxophonist Shelly Yoelin is an intoxicating mix of straight ahead bop, ballads and Latin sounds. Five of the seven members provide material.The highlights include Diddley Dance, the Bo Diddley beat would be right at home in New Orleans. Beautiful Sweetheart, composed by pianist Bobby Schiff is a lovely ballad dedicated to his wife Natasha. Eastern Fun incorporates Klezmer music into the mix. One of the highlights of the year so far.
In the last ten years a number of jazz artists have released recordings that attempt to fuse jazz and country music; these efforts have yielded results of varying success. Guitarist Corey Christiansen's latest effort is without doubt an exception.
Vocalist Gretchen Parlato will perform in Omaha at the 1200 Club at the Holland on May 11th. This is the first Omaha concert for the rising vocal star, whose 2011 effort "The Lost And Found" was the #1 Jazz CD of the year as awarded by this program. Click on the link to listen to an interview with Gretchen Parlato.(Recording Engineer: Mike Hansen.)
The new release from bassist and bandleader McBride is a straight-ahead affair with an acoustic group consisting of Steve Wilson on alto sax, Warren Wolf on vibes , Peter Martin on six of the eight tracks on piano with Christian Sands on the others. Carl Allen handles the drum duties on most of the session and Ulysses Owens Jr. filling in on two tracks.
Trumpeter Jeremy Pelt is an accomplished trumpeter with a string of critically acclaimed albums. A solid straight-ahead artist, he has released two albums (2005's Identity) and (2007's Shock Value) that explore electric jazz directions. For Water and Earth, the noted trumpeter, bandleader & educator is back with his longtime bandmates Frank LoCrasto, keyboards; Dana Hawkins, drums; and newcomers including Roxy Coss on saxophone.
Cuneiform Records has just released a new batch of adventuresome jazz discs. Their usual high standard of creative brilliance continues with a number of fine recordings, most notably The Rob Mazurek Octet's Skull Sessions.
The music of Miles Davis, so firmly entrenched in the instrumental heart and soul of jazz music, has also been embellished with lyrics in several instances. Vocalist Giacomo Gates' latest release gathers a variety of these selections and serves them with his inimitable stylings and superb musical accompaniment.
The music of Miles Davis was changing dramatically in the late 1960s. Most fans of the legendary trumpeter know that in 1969 he recorded Bitches Brew, the hugely successful dawn of jazz-rock that was one of the best selling jazz records ever released. Lesser known is the working unit that Miles took with him on the road was one of the most artistically daring and visionary bands that Miles ever led. Recordings of that outfit have recently surfaced and have been released on a multi-disc set, Live In Europe 1969, The Complete Bootleg Sessions Vol. 2.
Guitarist Pat Metheny, whose artistry has been rewarded with multiple Grammys over the years, has won another award for his fine 2012 recording. Metheny won in the jazz instrumental category with the album Unity Band.