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Dave Glasser: Evolution (2010)

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Dave Glasser: Evolution How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.

There's nothing wrong with a little old school. Saxophonist Dave Glasser keeps it simple—no flash, no gimmicks. Glasser has spent many years as a sideman, performing with artists including the Clark Terry
Clark Terry
Clark Terry
b.1920
trumpet
Quintet, the Count Basie
Count Basie
Count Basie
1904 - 1984
piano
Orchestra, Illinois Jacquet
Illinois Jacquet
Illinois Jacquet
1922 - 2004
sax, tenor
and the Dizzy Gillespie
Dizzy Gillespie
Dizzy Gillespie
1917 - 1993
trumpet
All Stars. He has also recorded several CDs as a leader. A native of New York City, Glasser is a master saxophonist, having studied under Lee Konitz
Lee Konitz
Lee Konitz
b.1927
sax, alto
, Frank Perowsky and Barry Harris.

Drawing on his admiration for Thelonious Monk

Thelonious Monk
Thelonious Monk
1917 - 1982
piano
, Glasser opens Evolution with the swinging "Monkish." With an easygoing groove from pianist John Nyerges
John Nyerges
John Nyerges
b.1958
piano
, bassist Jeff Campbell
Jeff Campbell
b.1963
bass
and drummer Rich Thompson, the altoist serves up a charming lead. Nyerges solos over some cool bass and slick drum work, and Campbell also solos. Another original is "Minor Madness," where Glasser demonstrates a David Sanborn
David Sanborn
David Sanborn
b.1945
saxophone
-esque grind during certain phrases, despite the overall style being more evocative of Kenny Garrett
Kenny Garrett
Kenny Garrett
b.1960
sax, alto
. Nyerges' "Monk's Blues" is highlighted by a tranquil, stair-step melody that's both charming and elegant. During the middle solo, Glasser puts the alto through some highs and lows, but never abandons the song's soft mood.

Four of the eight tracks on Evolution were written by Glasser, while Nyerges and Thompson contribute one each. As a whole, the album serves as both a tribute to Monk and a lesson in originality. The musicians play well off one another, with all expressing freely, regardless of which instrument is out front. Campbell and Thompson don't step out much, but they achieve plenty behind Glasser and Nyerges.

Track Listing: Monkish; Minor Madness; Tranquility; Monk's Blues; It Could Happen to You; Les Is More; Rhythm-a-ning; Blue Irridescence.

Personnel: Dave Glasser: alto saxophone; John Nyerges: piano; Jeff Campbell: bass; Rich Thompson: drums.

Record Label: Here Tiz Music

Style: Modern Jazz


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