Steve Turre: One4J--Paying Homage to J.J. Johnson (2003)
One4Jis the second high profile multi-trombone release this season, after Spirit of the Horn (MCG Jazz, 2003) by Slide Hampton and The World of Trombones. That disc was an implicit hommage to the trombone master J.J. Johnson. This present disc is explicitly dedicated to the Imminent Mr. Johnson, who passed away February 4, 2001. Steve Turre digs deep into the Johnson songbook to pull out compositions by and songs associated with or inspired by Mr. Johnson.
For his part, Turre successfully arranged these various trombone anthems for six talented and very different trombonists. He crafts "Overdrive" for himself and Robin Eubanks; "We Dot" for Andre Heyward; and Johnson's most famous composition, "Lament," for Joe Alessi and Steve Davis (with Douglas Purviance blowing the bass trombone). All are carried off with the grace and calm of low brass.
Discs like this can be somewhat risky affairs, with their emphasis on a single instrument. An orchestra of trombones might sound as if it will come off as an orchestra of cellos. But in this case, the disc is not terribly trombone heavy. It provides a completely satisfying listening experience while highlighting those keen practitioners of the trombone.
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Track Listing: Overdrive; Wee Dot; Lament; One 4 J; Mr. Johnson; Short Cake; Kelo; What is this Thing Called Love?; El Camino Real; Enigma; Minor Blues. (Total Time 60:26).
Personnel: Steve Turre, Joe Alessi, Steve Davis, Robin Eubanks, Andre Hayward, Douglas Purviance-Trombones; Stephen Scott, Renee Rosnes-Piano; Peter Washington-Bass; Victor Lewis-Drums; Abou M'Boup-Percussion.