Amazon.com Widgets

Caroline Davis: Live Work & Play (2012)

By Published: | 3,188 views
Caroline Davis: Live Work & Play How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.

It's easy to become jaded in an ocean of music where many recordings sound so much alike. But every now and then something piques even great curiosity, as is the case with Live Work and Play , the captivating debut by saxophonist/composer Caroline Davis. Her abilities as a musician and leader signal not just another new voice, but one that is acutely focused, reminiscent of another striking female Chicagoan, saxophonist Matana Roberts
Matana Roberts
Matana Roberts

sax, alto
.

The factors that have shaped Davis come out of seminal experiences: she was born in Singapore to European parents, and was raised in Atlanta, Georgia, where she grew up listening to gospel and R&B. It could be her academic achievements—degrees in Psychology and a Ph.D in Music—the late night jam sessions at the New Apartment Lounge with esteemed saxophonist Von Freeman
Von Freeman
Von Freeman
1922 - 2012
sax, tenor
, or finding inspiration from guitarist Bobby Broom
Bobby Broom
Bobby Broom
b.1961
guitar
's trio at Chicago's Pete Miller's Steakhouse.

In the end, it's not only Davis's soulfully fluent playing that resonates, but also her tightly knit quartet, which works through cerebral originals like the swinging opener "Kowtow" and the groove-aesthetic of "Passive Cloud," as well as the bright re-envisioning of Billy Strayhorn
Billy Strayhorn
Billy Strayhorn
1915 - 1967
piano
's "Blood Count." In each case, these consummate musicians— longtime Von Freeman guitarist Mike Allemana
Mike Allemana
Mike Allemana
b.1969
guitar
and the equally potent rhythmic core of bassist Matt Ferguson and drummer Jeremy Cunningham—deliver inventiveness and vigor.

Whether working through the melody changes in "Dionysus," tinted by Allemana's undulating tremolo and echo effect colors; getting some soulful blues swagger in the "Real Rims, For Kalvin" (part 3 of Davis's "Rims" mini-suite); or swinging true on Charlie Parker
Charlie Parker
Charlie Parker
1920 - 1955
sax, alto
's "Cheryl," the quartet is inspired and articulates the striking art of jazz. Allemana's contribution is noteworthy; he's the perfect foil for Davis' expressive horn and delivers some killing solos, as do the other band members. His "Academic Freedom Suite, Part 1" is one of the album's many bright spots—a slow- tempered theme which ignites into a firestorm showing his copacetic chops and some of Davis's most fervent playing.

Live Work and Play is totally fresh debut and highlights Davis as a gifted and empathetic player who warrants a closer look.

Track Listing: Kowtow; Passive Cloud; Blood Count; Dionysus; Old Rims; Shiny Rims; Real Rims, For Kalvin; Craftsmanship and Emptiness, For Rumi; The Academic Freedom Suite, Part 1; Cheryl.

Personnel: Caroline Davis: alto saxophone; Mike Allemana: guitar; Matt Ferguson: bass; Jeremy Cunningham: drums.

Record Label: ears&eyes Records

Style: Vocal


comments powered by Disqus
Support All About Jazz Through Amazon

Weekly Giveaways

Wadada Leo Smith

Wadada Leo Smith

About | Enter

Mort Weiss

Mort Weiss

About | Enter

Rotem Sivan

Rotem Sivan

About | Enter

Michael Carvin

Michael Carvin

About | Enter

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW

Enter it twice.
To the weekly jazz events calendar

Enter the numbers in the graphic
Enter the code in this picture

Log in

One moment, you will be redirected shortly.