Saturday, July 7, 2012

Pre-Release CD Review: Ray Parker "Swingin' Never Hurt Nobody"


Ray Parker

The Ray Parker Trio














When I was asked to do a pre-release review of the Ray Parker CD "Swingin' Never Hurt Nobody" my first thought was how exciting could a jazz string trio consisting of a bass, guitar and violin be? Well "Who Knew"? The musical sounds and skills showcased in this CD are simply superb. Personally, Ray Parker's work with his bow is fabulous. I love the sound of the upright bass but the pure clear sounds Ray produces with his bow take the listener to a new level of excellence. Joining Ray on this CD are Russell George on violin and Jon Hart on guitar.  These three players produce sounds that would make you think they are brothers. Each of three produce solos that are soft, imaginative and lush.  And when they play together, they fit like a hand in a glove. You can count on one hand the number of great jazz violinists playing today but now you will need another finger because Russell George's performance is outstanding and fresh.  Ray refers to Jon Hart as "Every bass players favorite guitarist" and after listening to this CD just once, it will be clear to all that he is absolutely right.

There are 9 tunes on this CD, great standards that are given new life again by this talented string trio.

1. Guitar Sammich/Now's the Time
2. The Best Things in Life Are Free
3. My Heart Belongs to Daddy
4. Always
5. The Nearness of You
6. Too Close for Comfort
7. Zingaro
8. Just in Time
9. Goodbye

Ray Parker produced this recording and Jon Hart did the engineering.  I congratulate both for the very professional way this product was completed.

This CD will released on July 24, 2012 and will be available at iTunes and CD Baby. It's a must have CD and one of the best new releases of the year!  I looking forward to hearing lots more from this trio in the near future.

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