[JPL] bopndicks 10 picks Oct 2007

Dick Crockett bopndick at yahoo.com
Wed Oct 10 20:25:19 EDT 2007

Bopndicks 10 Picks Oct 2007
This new Bill Mays... the interplay with this band,
The Inventions Trio, so pervasive and warm on the
first selection, “Baubles Bangles & Beads” with Marvin
Stamm the great trumpet player and an extraordinary
young cellist Alisa Horn.  Their version
Rachmaninoff's  “Vocalize,” one of the many highlights
on this new cd, and eventual progression to Mays
“Fantasy” in three movements, an improvisational
jazz-classical piece, which Ms. Horn will admit is
difficult for some classical musicians to grasp at
first, but is truly liberating, especially when Mays
breaks it down in the middle of the First movement
with  a bluesy progression. Truly liberating. Then the
counterpoint between Stamm muted trumpet and Horn soft
bowing, a dark tin pan alley open to the second
movement. One can just imagine, dawn breaking over
Paris. There's growth, combustion, transition here
then eventual resolution in the third movement. 
According to my odd coincidence, there's a similar
joyful and busy feeling as in Bud Powell's “Parisian
Thoroughfare,” where everyone seems to be in a chaotic
flow of  daily life, where busy merging avenues of
expression seem to have more relevance and meaning 
Then “Prelude #2” anchors the suggestion in a true
Americana sense that even Gershwin elevated jazz to an
even greater platform. That's the suggestion of Bill
Mays supreme effort that all music as art has
relevance. Gunther Schuller's Third Stream is alive
and well, especially in “Invention #8.” The mixing,
matching and metaphor of J.S. Bach jamming with
Charlie Parker can't go unnoticed. With The Inventions
Trio, not only is The Third Stream alive and well,
it's more artistic than today's programmed music and
acrobatic as it dances elegantly like Fred Astaire and
Ginger Rogers, yet pliable with post bebop composition
and today's modern improvisational standards.
It's takes a special artist to bring it off and Bill
Mays has done it with The Inventions Trio.
There's history with the Monterey Jazz Festival with
Gerald Wilson and Jimmy Lyons, the festival founder.
The Gerald Wilson band in the sixties had a certain
articulation, differing from other great bands of the
era. Ellington had his distinctive signature with
Johnny Hodges, Cootie Williams and Billy Strayhorn's
writing. Basie had his celestial moments with bright
piano accouterments as denouement, Maynard made
memorable blues vested big band Roulette recordings
with Slide Hampton and Ernie Wilkins gassy
Gerald Wilson has his own articulation, high flying
reeds with strong 'I Got your back' brass, and with
this new “Monterey Moods” cd, the tune that really
sets you off in this amorphous Gerald Wilson category
is “Ballad.” For heavens sakes is Oliver Nelson still
with us? The delicate Hubert Laws flute solo,
juxtaposed to the roaring slow big city blue
incandenscent melody. This is “Frame For The Blues” 
territory, a perfect opening/closing theme for many a
late night jazz radio show, quintessential for Jimmy
Lyons. “The Monterey Moods Suite”  is a special favor
for Jimmy Lyons memory and what you do for yourself if
you're into this music. It's why this cd is a part of
my dream book, for I've played his many albums in the
sixties on Pacific Jazz  when his new releases were
always a special occasion on jazz radio.
I want you to know the history of Gerald Wilson., his
writing, allegory, swing and soul. MONTEREY MOODS will
explain it all. His re-occurrence to bring it home,
'variations on a theme,' Similar story told in
different languages, rhyme and cadence with the best
re- bop musicians in  today's jazz world.
You'll know when you read and listen. The humble
opinion of this humble reviewer,  you want to have
this Gerald Wilson cd a part of your collection.
This dazzled the late night crowd at Monterey,
especially the version of Cole Porter's “I Concentrate
On You.” No one does a love song better.  
As the late crowd filters out in the fairgrounds cool
misty night, the Gerald Wilson signature with linger,
a personal memory for you and your best.
Sunnyside Records
The Jibaro Spirit is Puerto Rican soul, the authentic
music of the working class, similar to Bluegrass and
Country blues here in America.
Avant-gard trombonist Roswell Rudd teams with Puerto
Rico's Yomo Toro for this session with a rich blend of
improvisational Latin jazz, laced with jibaro folk. 
If you were to sit in an outdoor cafe', as the sun
settles just above over Plaza de San Juan, watch the
ladies stroll and listen to this sporting
conglomeration of jazz and jibaro,  as your mind
dances to the sounds of this splendid band consisting
of prominent players, George Cables, Bobby Sanabria,
Peter Brainin, Boris Koslov, Alex Hernandez and a
whole array of prominent Latin jazz musicians, then
mix in Yomo Toro, Puerto Rico's great quatro player
and you have a new cadence of “The Jibaro Spirit.” 
“Poochie & The Bird,” with South Bronx smoke and
Toro's quatros rhythms, a measure of mix and taste it
moves with a smooth ride from Toros traditional to
Rudd's trombone Harlem in a 57 Ford convertible
exhorting cumbia virtue all over South America! A
tradition follows in “Tango For Chris” with an
intimate beginning with Raul Jaurena's bandoneon,
Toro's cuatro and Alicia Svigal's violin with Rudd's
resonating trombone  comments among the rest. “Tres
Cuatro” is a highlight with an exciting very rhythmic
'guaracha' featuring Toro's patient, yet soulful
cuatro as he exhorts the rest of the band. George
Cables turn is next with a great solo adding even more
gist to this tune. By this time your standing,
gyrating with the rest in your virtual amigo as Rudd's
adds a signature similar to a Basie pontification.
“Preludio” is an wonderful traditional amore the red
dirt of village life. “El Amor” is an understated
sophisticate with Cable's piano introduction to this
new old music blending to Toro's traditional cuatro
and Rudd's post modern Afro Cuban. There is much
breadth, warmth and spirit that you may fly off to Old
San Juan and feel at home there among the food, the
music and the people. Or you want to listen to the
jibaro spirit of Roswell Rudd and Yomo Toro. This new
cd has so many rich flavors of Latin music and when
you listen “Bamako” a crazy meringue with voices of
the ultra cultural, starting with Dalia Silva
exhorting the pillars and others asking directions.
Then lovely vocal by Allesandra Belloni on “Loved By
Love.” You feel you've been let into a big secret
life, an indecipherable feeling of bliss.
What a kick to play a gig just blocks away from where
you grew up. Eddie Daniels returns to his old
neighborhood, the high school of the performing arts
in Manhattan, just five blocks away from the Iridium
Jazz Club on Broadway in the fifties where he performs
this 2 cd recording. Eddie Daniels has built a
reputation as an excellent reed player over the years,
prominently on clarinet. On this live performance he
also plays tenor saxophone of which he is equally
adept, almost like  Stan Getz on the opening tune, a
scatty, up tempo, “Falling In Love With Love,”
complying with his original “Love's Long Journey.” He
plays it nice and soft, a cool clarinet on
“Resolution”  with interactive support from Joe Locke.
Locke is a formative exponent of the vibraphone,
always a pleasure to listen to, and will do a gig in
almost any format, which is a credit to his unabashed
versatility and talent, and he's perfect in this
setting with Eddie Daniels. “Under The Wire” is
another ballad with Daniels on tenor with Locke right
there as well. The rest of the band is so 'locked in'
with Tom Ranier, piano, Dave Finck, bass and Joe La
Barbera, drums. 
The first cd also features an interesting John Lewis
composition “Django.” Daniels was a fan of MJQ and
played a gig subbing for Jerome Richardson with them
in the eighties at Town Hall. This version features
Daniels on clarinet with almost a Baroque quality with
a good back beat in this performance. Then Locke whose
very tasty licks add to this and the rest of the band
locked in for good measure, really a tribute to this
marvelous tune.
The second cd  opens with a scorcher up tempo “That's
For Afta,” a blaze through the changes, forest fire
awaiting to happen, then an almost dance-able ballet
Roger Kellaway's  “Deja Vu MJQ” with Locke doing his
dance on vibes and singing his scat, and a nice solo
from pianist Tom Ranier and Finck's formative solo on
bass with LeBarbera's solid time.   “Warm Valley” by
pianist Ranier again highlights Daniels formative
skill on tenor,  a rare minimalist view accented with
Ranier's understatement.  And it just keeps jamming
with Daniel again on tenor and robust solo on “Night
And Day” with Locke's fun and scat vibes and Ranier's
turn to burn on his solo.  “Prism” is a beautiful
ballad with Daniels high end lyricism on clarinet with
Locke's and Ranier's  understated accompaniment.
Daniel's clear distinctive tone and dynamic technique,
considered one of today's best on jazz clarinet, an
example as prescient and available here on “Chosen
“Live At The Iridium” offers rare performances of
Daniels on tenor saxophone.
This live Eddie Daniels Quintet is loose and
fundamentally grand together in a camaraderie between
these fine  musicians, it's why we love this music and
why they love to play this music.
JOHN McLEAN              BETTER ANGELS        Origin
A breeze of avant sophisticated hip full of voices,
reeds and  guitarist John McLean arranging this unique
new cd, fresh from the Chicago new jazz scene.
Greatness looms in Chicago's young writers, musicians
and post bop innovators as they appear on this new cd
with leader John Mclean reaches in and lifts up with
other the fledgling, the promising and accomplished
including himself. Therein lies a greatness in young
Chicago. Mclean implores tasteful and stunning
acoustic interludes as in “Three Arcs Complete The
Circle.” Jim Gailloreto's  warm saxophone leads along
with Grazyna Auguscik's vocalizing add an
extraordinary and  mesmerizing texture. Then a soft
glow of the Beatles “Blackbird,” starting with a
delicate intro by Auguscik, with this remarkable
ability sing it straight with nuance, one of the many
hidden treasures on this cd.  Her version of Janis
Ian's “Ready For The War” is another pleasant surprise
with a powerful romantic depth, that'll implore your
imaginative sensual metaphor. John McLean's picking on
this selection is an absolute evolving intensity, a
contrasting dynamic against Auguscik's cool art
deco-ness. It drives you delightfully crazy. There's 
vicarious contemporary sophisticated pleasure here.
John McLean has captured something in a very hip pop
sense. Metheny does it well. Patricia Barber does it
more intellectual. 
Larry Kohut's bass line makes the whole song. “Place
Talk” is a groovy jazz kick with Gailloreto on
saxophone, Auguscik's vocalizing and  Karl Montzka on
organ. Then a ballad with a surreal open and an airy
version of Ellington's “Do Nothing Til You Hear From
Me,” a 'Mr Softi' blue counterpoint with Gailloreto
and Karl Montzka on organ. “Airmail Special” is a
rebop Charlie Christian/Benny Goodman swing tune that
Ella popularized singing scat lyrics.  It's been re
adapted in a more modern vein. Scat supplied by McLean
and Gailloreto.  Then a romantic more Vignola modern
version of “I'm Confessing That I Love You.” The title
tune is a glorious nobel entity that Metheny does so
well.  “Better Angels” features Grazyna Auguscik's
vocalizing with electric violinist Zack Brock.
There's so music here supplied by a wonder of Chicago
musicians led by John McLean, this should have been a
2 cd set, The new Chicago Post Moderns.  If this group
tours your town, be sure you attend. You'll be
absolutely entertained.
This New Orleans  trumpet player in his early
twenties, already has a firm grasp and  conception, 
minimalist strength and attitude, killer imagination
for operant pop-bop. His second disk on Concord Jazz,
Christian Scott continues his appeal to a variety of
jazz audiences. This is disjointed subversive
funk”Cease Fire” where Scott puts you in a 'third
world man' Steely Dan phase, lyrical without words as
the music expresses the gist, missive notes, moans of
non intentional confrontation,  a different kind of
ballad, all third world man on this.  Pianist, Aaron
Parks is another new young modern progressive on
“Dialect” with guitarist Matt Stevens centering with
funk and fuzz licks and Scott on high registers with a
discorded R&B chorus unifying with saxophonist  Louis
Fouche'. Great dissonance, gray and moody days.
“Remains Distant”and “Uprising” continue this
contrapuntal need the different, especially in this
world on latte uniformity, programmable lifestyles and
soft subtle maternal multi task, this young band makes
a new statement in jazz world. There are so many
influence with Miles, bop, hip hop, the slow blue 
tribute, “Katrina's Eyes,” the tragedy, lagging
bureaucratic mold, a double entendre to horror, honor
and human frailty. Makes you want to shake your head
as Cristian Scott gives a vivid sound scape. 
This cd offers up diverse moods, meanings, voices from
young very progressive musicians of which Christian
Scott the one, with a dissonance that'll reverberate
long after the stench of circumstance is gone from our
short term memory.
Guitarist, John Scofield, the consummate multi
fusionist welds it together, ascetaline  bric-a- brac
to create modern sculpture, miscellaneous odd bits,
antiquarian, sentimental, decorative, or other
interest. That 'other interest' is intriguing for
Scofield will offer up the history of contemporary and
jazz guitar, right off the top of his head in one
The man has played with every prominent musician from
Mingus to Miles to Medeski Martin & Wood.
“This Means That” offers more insight into his writing
in “The Low Road,” “Down D” and “Strangeness In The
Night” with conducive mainstream dynamics of a small
horn group of John Swana, trumpet, Jim Pugh, trombone,
Lawrence Feldman, tenor saxophone and Roger Rosenberg,
baritone sax.
Scofield reverts in another direction with a straight
ahead re harmonized, honest and true version of
“Behind Closed Doors, “one of those you want to put 
on play back the rest of the night.  
Then an  up tempo juicy- jazzy “House of the Rising
Sun” with Bill Frisell on tremelo guitar. 
You gonna hear the best guitar pickin from these two
and with Steve Swallow electric bass lines on this
tune and drummer Bill Stewart at his usual best, it's
all nuthin but good.
“Shoe Dog” is another Scofield original groove, just
having fun fumbling around, with the horns to mellow
it out and Swallow's rhythm lines to mellow it out
even more. 
“Memorette” is another Scofield piece with a more
Jazzbo connected -disconnected techhnique. That's what
John Scofield does so well at first showing just plain
and folksy, then setting you back you with great touch
and technique. “Trio Blues” is hard bop jump with
horns a plenty sitting in for added jam and Scofield
blazes away with super funk dynamics. “Pretty Out”  is
very introspectively out and in there.  From humble
beginnings to dynamic endings and slow denouements
afterwards, John Scofield, one of jazz most profound
new developers, merging the old with the new with an
'awe shucks' skill. “This Meets That” is easy for many
listens. Let your friends know that Scofield's  a
gifted guitarist whose music is easy, readable,
letting go of pop preconception.
Cuban pianist Roberto Fonseca projects a youthful
originality, merging Afro Cuban with American jazz as
' a point of reference,' a modernist, blending
traditionalism with more contemporary views. Other
forms appear in his work, Spanish laced traditions
with blues ordinations. 
Born in Havana in 1975 to a musical family, Fonseca
first love was percussion. It's evident in his timing.
 He studied piano at eight, performed on stage at
fifteen and over the years has traveled all over the
world performing in concert.
His music focus transformed after meeting and
performing with  saxophonist Javier Zalba, formerly of
Irakere. They've collaborated ever since.
“Zamazu” is a culmination of Fonseca's evolving
artistry. This is a cd of Cubanisimo, of the music,
the life and the family. They all enjoy their lives
together. Roberto Fonseca portrays that love with his
own style. “Misa Popular,” popular fragment, open
ended and  prayerfully sung by Mercedes Cortes Alfaro
and segues to a quiet groovy  “Tierra En Mano with
Javier Zalba on clarinet. “Clandestino” is the most
contemporary soulful piece on this cd.  Fonseca is
strident on low end minimalism and vocalization with
driving percussion that's very infectious  and the
soul of this tune-absolute Afro Cuban soul! “Llego
Cachaito” is a tribute to the bass player Cachaito
Lopez.  “Congo Arabe” is moveable and ancient as a
whirling dervish, yet a more contemporary motet with
Javier Zalba on soprano sax which means this band is
up to more than stylistic expression. “Zamazu”  is the
groove that seals in rondo-esque. The hook on this
tune is repetitive and captivating. “Ismeal” written
by Abdullah Ibrahim, aka Dollar Brand is very
adaptable to Fonseca's Afro Cuban rendition with voice
and strings catering to the song's original intention.
“El Neijo” is an endearing portrait of the great Cuban
singer Ibrahim Ferrer.
The melody was developed after Fonseca's performances
with Ferrar, when they used to sit, play, exchange
“Zamazu” is full of joy, the way good friends will
express good wishes, speak glowingly of one another.
Roberto Fonseca's music is unencumbered by great
schemes and emancipations. There's more love of the
earth in his music, for the meaning is with us all
around us, within us.
Reedist Marty Ehrlich is a rich player, able to
cultivate original expression as he does so apply here
on soprano sax and clarinet.    Erhlich possesses the
complete and original dynamic range, melodic with
extraordinary lyricism clarinet in “I See A Horizon”
and soulful, screechy a cappella, a voice without
lyrics on “Hymn” the opening selection.
Myra Melford is a highly regarded jazz pianist, well
versed in the avant gard.  Originally from the Chicago
area, Myra resides in New York since the 1980's and is
assistant professor of improvisation and jazz music at
UC Berkeley. Familiar with Chicago blues, Medford
blends it to her thinking, as heard in her solos here.
  She also performs with Henry Threadgill and her own
bands with Marty Erhlich, Dave Douglas, Ellis Horner,
Chris Speed, Joseph Jarman, violinist Leroy Jenkins,
Dutch percussionist Han Bennink and flutist Marion
This duo appreciates the value of interpretive spirit.
  “For Leroy” calls up the bredth of the jazz
experience of these two artists, almost classical in
dramatics, yet open, cerebral, and Melford blue
intonations are joyful.  Both musicians present the
power of their experience with 'ears' as big as this
Not only what you read, but see and hear that commands
an artist's intention in composition and improvised
“Up Do” is a railing, a bebop, a moment, as Erhlich
and Melford move with speed and grace through this 
tune. Then a peaceful “Night.” This ballad reveals a
rare depth of feeling, touch of delicate realism, the
swoon of a lazy afternoon. And when Melford plays the
blues, she plays it with strength and out pouring with
Erhlich on clarinet adding parlance, bringing it home.
“Blue Dehli” adds a strobe to the tree of life,
declaring other cultures can join in on the blues and
contemporary, as the Beatles in “Back In the USSR.”
“Images Of Time” may seem a Marcel Proust  version of
the hip-no-cast.   Maybe it's the title that brings
this idea. This may seem to go on for hours past the
afternoon nap, although a mere breathtaking 5 minutes,
it reflects a sort of permanence, for this tune, as in
all the rest, structured for maximum participation
between the two.
Charlie Hunter's 7 string guitar inventiveness is
up-startling, a trio of prominent young 'dare to scare
up' this sort a pyrotechnics, Simon Lott, piano,
Rhodes, other keyboards and Erik Duetsch, drums.  This
new “Mistico” is an amalgamation of rock-jazz-fusion
elements. Film director David Lynch would love this
music. “Balls,” a retro fit of 'Grand Funk' in the old
neighborhood.  Perfect sound pieces as “Estranged” 
for Lynch's dream like new movie “Inland Empire.” 
You may be reminded of Bill Frissel's stamp of
dissociative approval. Charlie Hunter is  beside the
“Lady” reminds me of those downtown Detroit Gayety
Burlesque days with em doing the cake walk with
Charlie Hunter's retro flirtatious music doing the
“Wizard Sleeve” is most potent a person, or early 
music governed by the British with a person in mind.
Rod Stewart or Mick Jagger couldn't sing it if had
Charlie Hunter is an original exponent of
jazz/rock/fusion movement. He grew in Berkeley, the
home of another free jazz musician, David Murray. 
Each would go their own way. Charlie Hunter honed his
chops with lessons from flame throwing guitar icon Joe
Satriani, another total original. 
Charlie Hunter modifies his guitar to a seven string. 
His music combines many elements we think we've heard
before, as we move forward with an ear to the past,
similar to Medeski Martin & Wood. 
Then ”Spoken Word” plays with your mind a little. It's
great pop spacey fun, whatever it is. Then with
“Special Shirt” and “Mistico,” we're off to the races
As for Charlie Hunter, we're not supposed to know. We
know enough to let Charlie Hunter go and do his thing,
because we'll be satisfied with this jazz, grunge,
lope along goodness.
Luciana Souza combines with producer Larry Klein to
create a warm romantic album of love songs by James
Taylor, Leonard Cohen, Joni Mitchell, Michael
McDonald, Brian Wilson, Randy Newman. “The New Bossa
Nova combines the music with intimate lyrical
SACO YASUMA     ANOTHER RAIN      Leaf Note Records
Saxophonist Saco Yasuma creates bright, joyous avant
gard melodies and far Eastern originality on bamboo
sax , and never stand-alone, in the way of significant
contributions made by prominent others in this band,
some of Manhattan's best progressive musicians,  Roy
Campbell, Ken Filiano, Andrew Bemkey, Michael Thompson
with Golda Solomon on “Words.”
Originally recorded in 1982 and released again this
year, Michel Patrucciani plays this solo album with
the same passion as characterized in his many
performances, numerous albums and cds.
 It's always a pleasure to hear his music, for he was
with us for a brief and shining moment. 
He has a distinctive vocal quality of a Hoagy
Carmichael, looks like Montgomery Clift andinterprets
lyrics in his unique manner with memorable songs by
Tom Waits, Bob Dylan, Mose Allison, Randy Newman.  A
singer/song writer/saxophonist and guitarist, along
with keyboardist, writer and producer Larry Goldings,
their able to capture the essential talent of Curtis
gramophone  Records
Guitarist Nels Cline, percussionist Scott Amendola and
contra bassist Devin Hoff offer up a rock fusion
theory of modern music combining all modern elements.
Dick Crockett
“The Voice” 88.7fm
4623 T Street, Suite A
Sacramento, Ca 95819-4743


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