Posts Tagged ‘ Contemporary Jazz ’

Under The Lake – Jazz, Groove & Attitude

The formation Under The Lake consist of Jayson Tipp (keyboards), David Evans (tenor sax), John Moak (trombone) Brian Foxworth (drums), Evan Mustard (guitar), and Kenny Franklin (bass), furthermore Nat Caranto (alto sax), and Joe Powers (harmonica) as special guests.

Their debut album was Dive In (1993), followed by Up For Air (1995), People Together (2007) and Jazz, Groove & Attitude (2018). All songs were written by Jayson Tipp with the exception of George Is His Name, which he co-wrote with sax player Quintin Gerad W. The Portland, Oregon-based group will release their fourth album on February 23.

The album takes off with Breaking Through, a solid horn enhanced tune with a fine arrangement. Undoubtedly, the strength of the group lies in their live qualities, in which all band members contribute equally to the success of the piece as in the contemporary jazz tune Good Things.

Read more …

Advertisements

Greg Spero & Spirit Fingers – Spirit Fingers

“I feel I have a mission and something to say,” confides pianist Greg Spero and leader of SPIRIT FINGERS. “It requires a lot of digging and a lot of agony to get to the point where it can be said truly and honestly.” The forward-thinking and introspective pianist has been in the woodshed with his electrifying quartet SPIRIT FINGERS, who will make their Shanachie Entertainment debut on March 16, 2018 with their explosive eponymously titled CD. “We’ve been working on this for a year and a half, and have finally captured where we are on this new recording. We’ve only scratched the surface.” The new CD promises to be one of the highlights in jazz in 2018. A riveting collection of originals, SPIRIT FINGERS takes us on a glorious genre-bending excursion of free-wheeling groove, unbridled swing, and rhythmic fancy.

Spero and company lock-in creating a thrilling soundscape and moments of beautiful telepathic interplay that make the journey more than worth- while. SPIRIT FINGERS, formerly known as Polyrhythmic, has steadily been building a fan base and has amassed (under their original name) more than 250,000 views on YouTube. SPIRIT FINGERS is pianist Greg Spero, Parisian bassist Hadrien Feraud (John McLaughlin, Kamasi Washington, Chick Corea), Dallas drum prodigy drummer Mike Mitchell (Stanley Clark, Christian McBride, Chrisette Michelle) and Italian guitarist Dario Chiazzolino (Dave Liebman, Buika, Taylor Eigsti).

Shanachie VP of Jazz A&R Danny Weiss, who signed Greg Spero, is a veteran jazz producer who has recorded some of the biggest names in jazz. Weiss produced guitarist Larry Coryell’s landmark album Spaces, featuring John McLaughlin, Chick Corea, Miroslav Vitous and Billy Cobham. “When I started out making jazz records in the late 60s and early 70s, there was a great sense of adventure, innovation and excitement in the music. Since then, some great music has been created, but that vitality and innovation has become scarce,” states Weiss. “When I heard Greg Spero and his band I felt an excitement that I had not experienced in a long time. Not only is his virtuosity on the highest level, but the passion, the sense of adventure and innovation, and flat out groove are off the charts. Greg’s music has reminded me why I’m in this business!” Continue reading

Dan Siegel – Origins

According to his official biography keyboardist Dan Siegel has already released twenty solo albums. With Origins he has just launched his newest project. Anew a collaboration with bassist Brian Bromberg.

Beside Dan and Brian are performing Allen Hinds (electric guitar), Ramon Stagnaro (acoustic guitar), Craig Fundyga (vibraphone), Rogerio Jardim (voice), Vinnie Colaiuta (drums) and Lenny Castro (percussion). All compositions and arrangements are by Dan.

The term Rite of Passage envelops the visitor in an aura of the mysterious and mystical. Siegel, however relies on the familiar environment, proven chords and harmonies. There is nothing wrong with that, because he perfected them. Alexander Graham Bell made the famous announcement “When one door closes another opens”. When One Door Closes musically distributes the optimism that underlies this statement.

Read more …

Tiktaalik – Tiktaalik

Playful, down-to-earth, unpretentious: Tiktaalik tears down the boundaries of traditional genres and develops a mutual understanding for the strengths of each musician during their collective creative process. Tiktaalik embarks on a spirited journey outlined by highly energetic and intriguing melodies and rhythms as well as soft-spoken, delicate passages. Their elaborate compositional work leaves room for a common effort in arranging their pieces and combining uneven rhythms with complex harmonious structures in order to highlight the sound language of the quartet. This combination of varied musical stylistics and improvisational freedom defines Tiktaalik.

The band is composed of Oliver Marec playing the saxophone, Clemens Rofner on double bass, drummer Simon Springer and pianist Luca Zambito. Every member of Tiktaalik finds his place in the multi-layered identity of the band as they create a play that ties a knot with the name of the band. Tiktaalik is the Inuit word for freshwater fish. The Tiktaalik played a big role in evolution, as it represented the transition of the animal from the water on to land. In 2015 the saxophone player Oliver Marec founded Tiktaalik with the goal to combine traditional and modern elements of Jazz. Inspired by the onomatopoetic sound of the name, the band also represents the basic idea of the evolution – one cannot come to a standstill while seeking new melodic and rhythmic ideas.

Get the album on CDBaby

Takaaki – New Kid in Town

Composer Bernard Hoffer first heard jazz pianist Takaaki Otomo at a restaurant in New York and was impressed by his musicality, dynamic sensitivity, and beautiful harmonic sense. With bass player Noriko Ueda and drummer Jared Schonig, Takaaki selected five originals, four jazz standards plus one Broadway show tune and two novelties from Gustav Holst’s The Planets for this recording.

Beginning his training as a classical pianist Takaaki switched to jazz when he was a teenager and won first prize in a jazz competition in Japan in 2007. He moved to New York City in 2014. Originally from Japan Noriko Ueda began playing the electric bass, then switching to upright bass at age 18. She is a graduate of the Berklee College of Music where she majored in jazz composition. She has her own trio and quartet and has performed at the Blue Note Jazz Club. She won the Charlie Parker Jazz Composition Prize in 2002. Hailing from Los Angeles, drummer Jared Schonig studied at Eastman where he won seven Downbeat Student Music Awards. A favorite among vocalists, Schonig tours with Grammy Award-winners Kurt Elling and The New York Voices. He is in demand as a drummer for studio recordings and session work.

New Kid in Town is on sale on Amazon.com.

Michael Schmidt – Life

Composer and keyboardist Michael Schmidt longs for the golden era of fusion jazz, dominated by such groups as Mahavishnu Orchestra, Return To Forever and Weather Report. Famous names like Chick Corea, John McLaughlin, Joe Zawinul, Jimmy Haslip or Jeff Lorber have inspired this musician. Although he does not reach the level of popularity of these music titans, he has made a name in the field of fusion jazz through a variety of high-quality record releases.

With every release, he manages to gather around an illustrious band of top musicians who perfectly realize his idea of fusion jazz. On his new album Life (2017) are to find Dave Weckl, Allan Holdsworth, Scott Kinsey, Jimmy Haslip, Katisse Buckingham, Gary Novak, Andy Snitzer, Scott Kinsey, Mike Miller, Ruslan Sirota, Virgil Donati, John Daversa, Andy Milne, Jost Nickel, Mike Miller, Steve Tavaglione, Jerry Goodman, Oz Noy, Jost Nickel, Mitch Forman, Brandon Fields, Bob Mintzer, Bruce Fowler, Walt Fowler, Charlie Bisharat, MonoNeon, Larry Koonse, and Sophia Wackermann. Michael Schmidt performs on all tracks synths and sequencing.

The album was produced by bassist Jimmy Haslip, who was also involved in Michael’s previous projects. Michael chooses the quick start with the virtuoso piece Trance, which gives the participating musicians the opportunity to fully unfold their potential. With drummer Dave Weckl, late guitarist Allan Holdsworth, keyboardist Scott Kinsey, bassist Haslip and saxophonist Katisse Buckingham has this formation the firepower of the above-cited jazz fusion groups.

Read more …

Reunion4 – Reunion4

Reunion4, whose members are Mitch Holder/Guitar, Eddie Arkin/Guitar, Abraham Laboriel/Bass, and Paul Leim/Drums, started playing all original material written by Eddie and Mitch at the renowned Donte’s Supper Club in L.A. from 1977 to approximately 1982. During that time, the group never recorded.

“We all went forward with our individual careers and now, after all these years, we’ve gone back and recorded several of the original songs dating from 1977 to tunes written over the course of thirty plus years. That’s the theme of this project and as we started the first of two days recording”, Paul said, “It’s like we never stopped playing; we’re just picking right up right from where we left off.The four of us are very excited about this project and we hope all of you will like hearing a span of music that covers all these years between our last live gig as a quartet right up to the present.”

Reunion4, a gem of contemporary jazz also favorable for smooth jazz fans, is now arrived at CDBaby.

Advertisements