Amanda Ruzza – This Is What Happened

Youth and talent with a multicultural focus brings us to This Is What Happened (2012), the debut recording by bassist Amanda Ruzza.

Born in Sao Paulo, Brazil, to a Chilean mother and an Italian father, Ruzza learned at an early age to appreciate opera and rock, and ultimately adapted to other styles, including jazz. She took up the electric bass at age 12, and a year later had begun playing professionally. Drummer Mauricio Zottarelli is the only constant with Ruzza. The other musicians, who each appear on selected tracks, are Alex Nolan on electric and acoustic guitars; co-producer Mamiko Watanabe on Rhodes; pianist Cliff Korman; David Binney on alto and soprano saxophones; Lucas Pino on tenor and soprano saxes; and Chris Stover on trombone.

One can hear hints of Marcus Miller or Stanley Clarke in the way Ruzza plays. The funky “Larry and I” opens the set. Binney leads on the opening melody and then turns it over to Watanabe, who gives a touch of Eumir Deodato the way he handles the Rhodes. Ruzza makes her presences felt regardless of who is out front. And Zotarelli struts his stuff behind all of them.


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