Bruce Barth: Live At The Village Vanguard (2003)
Four originals emphasize melody. Barth’s “Prospect Avenue Blues,” however, gets down and dirty with a genuine mood. All the same, embellished melody and steady meter can become tiresome when used for too long a time. Fortunately, the leader called in reinforcements during his Village Vanguard performances last year. With Monk to the rescue, Barth perks up his session with a rollicking “San Francisco Holiday,” a dark, solo piano sojourn through “Evidence,” and a medium tempo blues walk through “Let’s Call This.” Monk provides the ammunition to make any performance sizzle and swing. Ugonna Okegwo and Al Foster, who accompany with faithful support, contribute heartily. While the pianist’s Village Vanguard session brought cheers those two August nights, it stands marred by the unfair ratio of too little adventure to middle-of-the-road, laid-back rambling.
Track Listing: Little Ditty; Star Eyes; In the Still of the Night; Song for Alex; San Francisco Holiday; Evidence; Let
Personnel: Bruce Barth- piano; Ugonna Okegwo- bass; Al Foster- drums.
Record Label: MAXJAZZ