Mark Rapp's Melting Pot: Good Eats (2011)

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Mark Rapp's Melting Pot: Good Eats
Legendary saxophonist Lou Donaldson
Lou Donaldson
Lou Donaldson
b.1926
saxophone
doesn't subscribe to a one-size-fits-all approach in his own music making. His oeuvre, which spans more than half a century, touches on bop, hard bop, soul-jazz, and funk, with each setting allowing for a different aspect of his musical personality to shine. In crafting a tribute to Donaldson, trumpeter Mark Rapp honors this diversity and organic amalgam of music by touching on various styles, as he works his way through Donaldson's catalog.

Rapp's band is appropriately called Melting Pot, and they certainly know how to blend genres and cross stylistic lines. The band is comfortable dealing with Donaldson's legacy in a fairly straightforward fashion, but also revels in updating a few of his pieces. The funky blues strut of "Alligator Boogaloo" and the James Brown
James Brown
James Brown
1933 - 2006
vocalist
-ish funk of "Everything I Do Gonna Be Funky (From Now On)" fall under the first heading, as does the joyous and churchy "Love Power."

When Rapp goes the other way, and peels back the stylistic skin originally attached to Donaldson's music, his own diverse experiences and interests come into play. "Brother Soul," featuring Rapp's didgeridoo and trumpet along with Don Braden
Don Braden
Don Braden
b.1963
sax, tenor
's alto flute, is reborn in a mystical shrine of sound. The somewhat static serenity of "Elizabeth," with Rapp's effects-laden trumpet moving atop the gentle waters, brings Donaldson's music into the realm of Miles Davis
Miles Davis
Miles Davis
1926 - 1991
trumpet
' "In A Silent Way." Another Davis allusion appears on "One Cylinder," which begins as aural oddities abound and focuses on Rapp's muted horn work.

The title track is Rapp's lone original, and places his trumpet atop drummer Klemens Marktl's joyous tom groove, which is pure New Orleans with a little bit of a Bo Diddley
Bo Diddley
Bo Diddley
1928 - 2008
guitar
beat beneath it. Once that brief number is through, Rapp focuses on having fun as he closes the album by delivering two of the popular covers that made their way into Donaldson's repertoire. Quincy Jones
Quincy Jones
Quincy Jones
b.1933
producer
' theme from "Sanford and Son" and "The Glory Of Love" are right-down-the-middle, with no surprises but lots of great grooves and fine solo licks worth smiling about. With a tribute to Billy Strayhorn
Billy Strayhorn
Billy Strayhorn
1915 - 1967
piano
already under his belt, and this strong Donaldson-based outing added to his discography, Rapp is quickly developing a reputation as a superb interpreter and great stylist, willing to tackle the history of this music with his eyes on the past and his mind on the present and future of this music.

Track Listing: Alligator Boogaloo; Brother Soul; Elizabeth; Spaceman Twist; Love Power; One Cylinder; Pot Belly; Everything I Do Gonna Be Funky (From Now On); Good Eats; Streetbeater (Sanford And Son); The Glory Of Love.

Personnel: Mark Rapp: trumpet, flugelhorn, cornet, didgeridoo; Joe Kaplowitz: Hammond B3 organ: Ahmad Mansour: guitar; Klemens Marktl: drums; Don Braden: tenor saxophone and alto flute (1, 2, 4, 5, 8, 10).

Record Label: Dinemec

Style: Modern Jazz


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