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Bob Mamet: Impromptu (2010)

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Bob Mamet: Impromptu How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.

No gimmicks. No trends. All business. The Bob Mamet Trio gets straight to the point with Impromptu.

Chicago-born Mamet studied at Peabody Conservatory before moving to Los Angeles, where he has worked a composer and session musician, showing his versatility in television, film, advertising and performance. Associations include Alex Acuna, Larry Carlton
Larry Carlton
Larry Carlton
b.1948
guitar
, Eric Marienthal
Eric Marienthal
Eric Marienthal
b.1957
saxophone
, Gerald Albright
Gerald Albright
Gerald Albright

saxophone
and David Benoit
David Benoit
David Benoit
b.1953
piano
. For Impromptu, Mamet is accompanied by Darek Oles
Darek Oles
Darek Oles
b.1963
bass, acoustic
on bass and Joe LaBarbera
Joe LaBarbera
Joe LaBarbera
b.1948
drums
on drums.

The title song has a Benoit/Guaraldi feel to it. Mamet carries the lead in playful fashion. During the song's climax, he scores a series of descending rolls.

"Venice Waltz" is a charming piece. La Barbera adds some extra flavoring with cymbal slides and soft strokes on the snare. Oles steps out front briefly during a bridge that sets up the closing.

Oles and La Barbera are more involved on "At Play," an upbeat, free-spirited song. Bass and piano are in unison during the introduction. The bass continues the stair-step rhythm while the piano moves on to the melody. La Barbera gets to lick his chops in a call-and-response with Oles. The trio is sharp throughout.

Any time you get a collection of all-original compositions performed by a solid group of jazz musicians, you're likely in for a treat. Impromptu delivers on that promise in a stylish, albeit brief (under 40 minutes total), set. Although Oles and La Barbera don't get to stretch out much, they complement Mamet perfectly. Even in the background, they present integral parts of the performance.

Track Listing: Impromptu; Cats on the Roof; Venice Waltz; At Play; Until Morning; Danzon Allegretto; Bob's Blues; Illinois Road; Keziah; Impromptu (Reprise).

Personnel: Bob Mamet: piano; Darek Oles; bass; Joe La Barbera: drums.

Record Label: Counterpoint Records

Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


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