So, what's not to like? Educator, arranger and trombonist Phil Wilson leads his Panamerican All-Stars to celebrate the music of Antonio Carlos "Tom" Jobim.
This music is timeless. If you're wondering how many times you can listen to "Corcovado, "Chega de Saudade, "Insensatez" or "Desafinado" without having to stifle a yawn of over-familiarity, put aside that trepidation for Celebrate the Music of Antonio Carlos "Tom" Jobim.
It's indisputable that there are over-exposed songs selected by artists from the Great American Songbook, but somehow Brazilian music and, in particular, the first-wave compositions from Jobim enter a new category with flowing and irresistible rhythms. Yes, this is familiar music to just about everyone, but it would be far better to be stuck in an elevator with fifteen other passengers where this music is playing than anything else.
Wilson has extensive recording experience, and has worked with a number of big band veterans like Woody Herman and Buddy Rich before becoming developing a lengthy career as music educator at Boston's Berklee College of Music. This represents his fourteenth album since 1968, which was a big year for socio-economic as well as political change. Personnel-wise, Wilson's trombone is joined by Matt Marvuglio's bass flute, providing a simpatico touch. Oscar Stagnaro plays electric bass and Larry Baione is the guitarist here, insinuating some very tasty single-line solos. Both pianist Dario Eskenazi and drummer Mark Walker are also part of the Caribbean Jazz Project.
Like the work of trombonist Jay Ashby, who has frequently recorded and played with Brazilian musicians, Wilson is quite comfortable with his role of being the only horn on this album and the pungent aroma of his instrument provides additional spice for this session.
Personnel: Phil Wilsons: trombone, arranger; Matt Marvuglio: bass flute; Larry Baione: guitar; Dario Eskanazi: piano; Oscar Stagnaro: electric bass guitar, arranger; Mark Walker: drums, percussion.