The Stryker/Slagle Band: Live at the Jazz Standard (2005)
The first appealing thing about this recording is the fact that the rhythm section is guitar-led, rather than piano-led. Dave Stryker, while a significant soloist, is a superb accompanist, which he illustrates on every cut of the recording. Another cool thing about the recording is that it is composed of all new originals, except one track, "I Love's You Porgy," which is given an appealingly inventive sideways interpretation.
Specifically impressive on this disc is Dave Stryker's introduction to "Muddy Waters, which is all blues. He gets as close to the rural base as any jazz artist can. Following his introduction, the entire band brings everything up to date in a 21st Century manner. Jazz is epistemological, building on itself, evolving, and transforming. It is our charge as the listener to note this and flow with it.
But "Muddy Waters" is merely a taste of the fine repertoire offered on this live recording. "Doubleblue" is a 24-bar affair that incorporates both traditional and avant-garde elements in both the guitar and saxophone sections of the piece. Offbeat pieces like "Mozone" and "The Great Divide" show the future of listenable, accessible jazz.
Track Listing: Mozone; Boogaloo 7; Doubleblue; I Love's You Porgy; The Great Divide; Baba Marta; Muddy Waters; The Chaser; Passing Giant.
Personnel: Dave Stryker--guitar; Steve Slagle--alto & soprano saxes; Ed Howard--bass; Victor Lewis--Drums.
Record Label: Zoho Music