Thursday, August 8, 2019

CD Review: Beata Pater releases Her 9th CD, "TeT"


Beata Pater has just released her 9th CD entitled "TeT" and it's a beautiful piece of musical art.   Backed by an 18-piece band that includes a wind and brass double quartet, and a double string quartet,   Beata began playing violin at the age of 6 and became "totally obsessed with the instrument".  She was a serious student of classical music but at age 15 she joined a Funk/Jazz/Fusion band that enjoyed some success while still living in her native Poland.  Still looking for something new, she moved to England to continue her violin studies.  While studying in England another opportunity arose in Japan.  She was contracted to teach violin at the Yamaha school for six months but stayed for 10 years.

All this instrumental training  and experiment with genres allowed Beata to develop her singing voice and style from the perspective of a highly trained instrumentalist.  Beata uses her voice as a finely tuned instrument and the results are rich and satisfying.  In fact, at times when I was listening to her CD, I almost forgot she was doing a vocal since the sound of her voice was so soft and beautiful .  She is one of the finest examples of what a Jazz singer is all about.

 "TeT" contains a selection of Jazz standards and original tunes by contemporary composers.  Each tune is beautifully and musically done to the highest standards.  Pater calls the CD "TeT" because there are nine tunes on this recording and "TeT" is the ninth letter of the Hebrew alphabet and the symbol for the number 9.

PLAYLIST:

1. "Little Sunflower"
2. "Lazy Afternoon"
3. "I feel You"
4. "Crystal Silence"
5. "Old Devil Moon"
6. "Invitation"
7. "The Contessa"
8. "Strays"
9. "Ode to Max"

PLAYERS:

Beata Pater- Vocal
Hiromu Aoki- Piano
Dan Felszli- Bass
Brynn Albanese- Violin
Emily Lanzone-Violin
Peter Janduloa-Hudson- Viola
Barbara Spencer- Cello
Stefen Kuehn- Trumpet/Flugehorn
John Gove- Trombone
Meredith Brown- French Horn
Aaron Lington- Bass Clarinet/Flute

I have attached two "YouTubes" for your listening pleasure.  The first one is the classic Jazz tune, "Little Sunflower" composed by Freddie Hubbard and Al Jarreau.  This is one of my favorite Jazz tunes and I loved hearing my good friend who recently passed, Steve Madaio  play this on his Trumpet.  Steve's version was a lot faster than Beata's but both version are just terrific!  The second "YouTube" is an absolutely brilliant version of the Jazz standard "Invitation".  I know you will enjoy both!



 
          

Tuesday, July 30, 2019

CD Review: Tierney Sutton and Her Band Continues their Recording Excellence With Their New CE: "Screenplay"


On May 17, 2019, Tierney Sutton and her wonderful band released a simply beautiful new CD called "Screenplay" that covers outstanding songs from American films.  Tierney Sutton has been performing for over 25 years  and has gathered 8 Grammy nominations for her stellar Jazz vocal work.  You might think that receiving 8 Grammy Nominations would make Tierney one of the biggest popular vocalist performing today but wait, Tierney Sutton is a Jazz singer.  Jazz singers just don't get the respect they deserve. Not only is Tierney a Jazz singer but one of the very best in her trade.  Tierney doesn't show up and just sing Jazz standards like most Jazz singers.  No, Tierney's arrangements are spectacular, fresh and unique.  So different that lots of up and coming Jazz singers borrow them and mostly without permission,  I have to add.  The wonderful arrangements were created with help from The Tierney Sutton Band's talented band members including of course, Tierney herself.  Tierney Sutton deserves tons more accolades and more attention from the listening public and the music industry.  She is in a class of her own, never playing it safe and always taking chances and her final music product is always superb!

A few months ago I had the pleasure of hearing Tierney sing at Pete Carlson's Golf Shop in Palm Desert, CA and her performance reminded me again of how special her singing is.  Tierney is a gift for any music lover of Jazz singing.  I have no doubt that she is one of the top 5 Jazz vocalists performing today.  The Tierney Sutton Band tours the country so be alert to when she is performing in your area and don't let anything stop you from hearing Tierney Sutton and this band.

This review would not be complete without showering  praise on the members of this talented and creative band.  Every member of this band is a high-level musician not only for their playing capabilities but also their understanding of Tierney Sutton's phrasing and touch for lyrics.  Of course, their contributions to the arrangements are stunning!  The band is one of the most creative and artistically satisfying groups performing currently.

The CD has 15 cuts, each one a gem, and the Band approaches every one of these great songs from American movies in a different path than the original arrangements.

PLAYERS:

Tierney Sutton- Vocals
Christian Jacob- Piano
Kevin Axt- Bass
Trey Henry- Bass
Ray Brinker- Drums
Serge Merlaud- Guitar (5, 12,13)
Alan Bergman- Vocals (12)

PLAYLIST: 

1. "The Windmills of Your Mind"
2. "Moon River/Calling You"
3.  "On a Clear Day"
4. "What Are You doing the Rest of Your Life"
5. "I've Got No Strings"
6. "If I Only Had a Brain?"
7. "The Sound of Silence"
8. "Goodbye for Now"
9. "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend"
10. "Hopelessly Devoted to You"
11. "You're the One That I Want"
12. "How Do You Keep the Music Playing?"
13. "It might Be Now"
14. "Every Now and Then"
15. "Arrow"

I have selected  2 "YouTubes" for your listening pleasure.  The first one is one of my personal favorites, "The Windmills of Your Mind" with music by the late Michel Legrand and lyric by Alan and Marilyn Bergman.  The arrangement is by Tierney Sutton.  The second is "The Sound of Silence" from the move "The Graduate".   The arrangement is by Trey Henry and Ray Brinker.



Sunday, July 7, 2019

CD Review: Guitar Player and Blues Vocalist Josh Hyde releases his new CD, "Into the Soul"



Guitar player/singer/songwriter Josh Hyde released his second album "Into the Soul" on April 26, 2019.  Josh Hyde has written all the songs on his new CD and they all have a comfortable feel,  like you've  experienced them before.  At times, the sound of Josh's music feels somewhat imperfect and that's the charm of this CD.  Josh writes, sings and plays the Blues and the feel is what you might have heard on the radio in the 1970's.  Josh had a unique musical vision for this CD.   He offers "I always wanted to do an analog recording, work on reel-to-reel.  The producer,  Joe V. McMahan, just by chance, knew of a machine that was being sold by Robert Plant's producer. So we ended up buying this 24 track analog machine that Robert Plant had done a few records on. It kind of gave the album a different sound.  There's nothing really like analog".

This CD has a wonderful groove and a major part of this feel is because of the talented musicians that support Josh.  If you like the Blues, you will love this CD.  

Players:
1. Josh Hyde-Guitar/ Vocals/ Vibraphone
2. Joe V, McMahan-Guitar/Vibraphone
3. Ron Eoff- Bass
4. Derrek Phillips- Drums/ Percussion
5. Jimmy Wallace- Organ/Piano/Keys
6. Chris Lippincott-Pedal Steel

Playlist
1. "Rocking Chair"
2. "Smile"
3. "For You I Ache"
4. "Lover's Curse"
5. "The Edge of Love"
6. "Can't Let Go"
7. "The Key"
8. "Down on Bourbon Street"
9. "All You Need is Soul"
10. "Call My Name"
11." Reasons Why"


I have attached two "YouTubes" for your listening enjoyment.  The first one is the opening tune on the CD, "Rocking Chair"  and the second is also one of my favorites,  "Smile".  Josh Hyde writes from the heart and his lyrics are emotional and believable!














Monday, June 17, 2019

CD Review: "Five Play Live from the Firehouse Stage"


Five Play is a popular Jazz Band where five remarkably talented women musicians perform with a
deep sense of traditional Jazz band music including original compositions and standards with arrangements that are true to the history of American Jazz.  The band consists of Sherrie Maricle-MusicalDirector/Drums, Tomoko Ohno-Piano,  Noriko Ueda-Bass,  JamiDauber-Trumpet/Flugelhorn and Janelle Reichman-Tenor Sax/Clarinet.  Each one of these talented ladies contributed an original composition for this CD and all worked on the arrangements.  The songs and arrangements are just plain fun that bring the listener back to previous era when Jazz bands ruled!

Five Play has performed at many of the world's most prestigious concert halls, musical festivals and
Jazz clubs from Carnegie Hall to The Kennedy Center.  In 2004, the quintet was recognized in DownBeat Magazine's Annual Readers' Poll as one of the best small groups of the year.  In 1999 their inaugural CD, "On the Brink", was voted best CD of the year by Jazz journalist icon Nat Hentoff.

Playlist:
1. "T-Bone Special"
2. "Samba De Sorvete"
3. "Just Squeeze Me"
4. "Uneven Pieces"
5. "The Pilot"
6. "Nancy with the Laughing Face"
7. "Circles"
8. "I Can't Give you Anything But Love"
9. "Unexpected"
10. "The time Being"













I have attached two "YouTubes" for your listening enjoyment.  The first one is Five Play's fine version of the Duke Ellington classic "Just Squeeze Me"  with excellent Clarinet work by Janelle Reichman and the second one is a Basie-inspired arrangement of the Jimmy McHugh classic, "I Can't Give You Anything But Love".



Sunday, June 2, 2019

CD Review: Patrice Jégou "If It Ain't Love"


Patrice Jégou (Pronounced Zhay-goo) has just released her second CD "If It Ain't Love" and it's a winner!  There are 16 wonderful songs on the playlist of this CD and Patrice shows she can handle ballads and swinging tunes without a misstep.  Her voice is velvety and smooth and she handles lyrics like the seasoned pro she is.  Take a good look at the different songs she sings on her CD, they cover a lot of vocal territory and Patrice performs every one with faultless execution.  The list of musical talents she recruited on this CD is also remarkable.  Here is a list of some of best arrangers who worked on this recording:  Jorge Calandrelli (arranger for Barbara Streisand and Tony Bennett), John Clayton, Mark Kibble of TAKE 6 and David Paich (writer of such hits as "Rosanna" and "Africa" and son of legendary arranger Marty Paich) and  LA Pianist Mike Land.  Patice also brought in the always outstanding Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra that really swings on "Jersey Bounce", "If It Ain't Love", "Just Squeeze Me" and "Please Send Me Someone To Love". 

Every aspect of this CD is impeccable, starting with the songs, the arrangements, the sound engineers, the Orchestra Conductors, and the musicians.  Even though this is my first experience with Patrice Jégou, her voice and style make me feel warm and safe like spending time with an old friend.  Thank you, Holly Cooper of Mouthpiece Music for opening this musical door for me!

PLAYLIST:
1. "Lover Come Back to Me"
2. "Jersey Bounce"
3. "Baubles, Bangles, and Beads"
4. "Yes We Can, Can"
5. "I'm So Glad I'm Standing Here Today"
6. "Wrap Your Troubles in Dreams"
7. "If It Ain't Love"
8. "Estate"
9. "Lover Come Back to Me"
10. "Waltz for Debby"
11. "Losing You"
12. "just Squeeze Me"
13. "Where Do You Start"
14. "Remembrances"
15. "Please Send Me Someone to Love"
16. "It Might Be You"

I have attached a "YouTube" of Patrice Jégou singing "Waltz For Debbie" from her new CD.  This is a perfectly wonderful musical and visual painting by Patrice singing this Jazz classic written by Bill Evans with lyric by Gene Lees.  It doesn't get any prettier than this!


I have attached a second "YouTube" of Patrice Jégou singing the classic big band song "Jersey Bounce" with the Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra.


Sunday, May 12, 2019

CD Review: Adam Schroeder "Let's"


I have been an Adam Schroeder fan ever since I heard him playing his Bari Sax several years ago at one of Pete Carlson's Jazz nights.  Adam is one of the few masters of the Bari Sax.  As a former Alto Sax player, I can tell you that even though the keys of all Saxophones are the same,  it's unusual to hear any Alto and/or Tenor player also playing Bari Sax.  My guess as to why is that the Bari Sax is so big it takes a much greater effort and a lot more air to navigate this horn correctly.

When performing, Adam Schroeder makes it look like playing the Bari Sax is easy!  His tone is smooth and mellow and his improvisation is fresh and pleasing.  I met Adam again last month when he was playing a Jazz concert at Pete Carlson's Jazz Club and during our conversation, he mentioned that he wanted me to hear his lasest CD that I had missed.  This CD, "Let's" was released a few years ago and it lives up to my Adam Schroeder expectations.

Adam composed 5 of the 11 songs on this CD and his compositions are impressive.   He also invited three of the best current Jazz players in the country to join him on this CD.  Every player is on my Jazz favorites list: Anthony Wilson on Guitar, John Clayton on Bass and Jeff Hamilton on Drums.

Players:
Adam Schroeder- Bari Sax
Anthony Wilson-Guitar
John Clayton-Bass
Jeff Hamilton-Drums

Playlist:
1. "Hello Bright Sunflower"
2. "In the Middle of the Kiss"
3. "Just Clap Your Hands"
4. "You and I"
5. "Wrap Your Troubles in Dreams"
6. "A Hawkeye, A Hoosier, and Two Cali Cats"
7. "Contemplation"
8. "Patient Endurance, Steady Hope"
9. "Let's"
10. "Southside Samba"
11. "The Smulyan Spectacles"

I have attached a "YouTube" of the song "Just Clap Your Hands" written by Adam Schroeder that fully utilizes the outstanding rhythm section of Wilson, Clayton and Hamilton.  I also attached a second "YouTube" of the group playing the Benny Carter tune, "Southside Samba"  that is a fun recording.  Adam Schroeder performs with several big bands in the California area so don't miss any chance to hear him play!




 

Saturday, May 4, 2019

CD Review: Aimee Nolte "Looking For The Answers"


Vocalist, Pianist, Arranger and Song writer Aimee Nolte has released her newest CD, "Looking For The Answers" on April 12, 2019 and its stunningly good!  She is one talented person with a clear soft voice that at times can sound more like a musical instrument than a voice.  I was drawn into the songs on this CD one by one including the 8 songs that Aimee composed.  Her lyrics are compelling and believable and her melodies are haunting and hard to turn away from.  Honestly this is not the type of music that hits my musical hotspot, but once I started listening to Aimee sing and play, it was too late for me to escape, I was captured.  Aimee is a super-star musician and her career will surely build from here.

Aimee has selected some strong Jazz players to join her on this CD who I have listed below.  I had a hard time deciding what cuts from this CD I should attach to this review because I loved every one of them.  I decided you needed to hear one of her original songs, "This One Hurts" and I had to include her duet with John Clayton.  Then I found another "YouTube" of Aimee playing and singing "Have You Met Miss Jones" that I just had to share with you.

Playlist:
1. "The Loveliest Girl"
2." Looking for the Answers"
3. "Falling Snow"
4."The One Hurts"
5. "I Gotta Get"
6. "Save Me One Last Time"
7. "Bye Bye Blackbird"
8. "All Too Soon"
9. "So In Love"
10. "You Should've"
11. "For A While"

Players:
1. Aimee Nolte- Vocals, Piano, Organ, Synth Bass
2. John Clayton- Bass (7)
3. Bruce Lett- Bass (1,2,3,5,10)
4. James Yoshizawa- Drums
5. Mike Scott- Guitar (2,3,5,10)
6. Jason Neubauer- Guitar (1)
7. Doug Webb- Woodwinds (1)b,John Reilly
8. John Reilly- Woodwinds (6)
  
I have attached a "YouTube" of Aimee singing "Bye Bye Blackbird" a duet with  the great Bassist John Clayton that I love.  I have attached a 2nd "YouTube" of Aimee playing and singing "Have You Met Miss Jones" that is not on this CD but I think gives you a better idea of Aimee's talent and range.  Lastly, I have attached a "YouTube" of Aimee singing one of her own songs, "This One Hurts".





CD Review: Beata Pater releases Her 9th CD, "TeT"

Beata Pater has just released her 9th CD entitled "TeT" and it's a beautiful piece of musical art.   Backed by an 18-piec...