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CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Anton Schwartz: Flash Mob

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While attending Harvard University, Anton Schwartz held down the first tenor saxophone chair in its jazz band, yet relocated to the San Francisco Bay Area, where he became a significant jazz force, also serving as an educator and mentor. Flash Mob--which is perhaps his most robust album to date--denotes his fifth venture as a leader and first album since Radiant Blue (Antonjazz, 2006). Schwartz reaps the benefits of nascent talent and possesses a commanding presence amid his full-bodied tone and fruitful association with trumpeter Dominick Farinacci, coupled with a diverse track mix of memorable works. They dish out a drawling ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Anton Schwartz: Radiant Blue

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For a guy who has the blues, San Francisco-based tenor saxophonist Anton Schwartz sure seems happy. While the ten tracks on Radiant Blue are purported to be based on the twelve-measure blues form (I think there's a couple of sixteens in there), there is barely a blush of sadness to this decidedly upbeat release. But once you're a few measures into “Phantom Dance," you can forget about the overarching theme and just enjoy the ride. This modal opener presents Schwartz's confident tone and the luxury-class support of pianist Taylor Eigsti and guitarist Peter Bernstein. Together with the rhythm section, the ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Anton Schwartz: Radiant Blue

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Tenor saxophonist Anton Schwartz picks his spots rather articulately here. Either as an accompanist or accelerator, the artist's penchant for making optimistic jazz looms in radiating fashion. Schwartz sports a resounding tone on this studio set, spiced up with grit and a soul-jazz drenched élan.

The quintet sustains interest from top to bottom, partly due to the saxophonist's strong compositions. Schwartz injects foot-stomping swing, New Orleans-style bump and grind, and expressive blues vamps into an irrefutably sparkling program. With his harmonically rich theme pieces, the saxophonist either floats like a butterfly atop buoyant rhythms or gets down and ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Anton Schwartz: Holiday Time

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Holiday Time is the third recording by San Francisco Bay area resident Anton Schwartz, although this outing finds him fronting a new quartet. Schwartz is a native of New York, where he studied with the late Warne Marsh and Eddie Daniels, and his big, round sound is front and center once again. One does not generally approach a holiday album expecting to hear anything markedly new or original. Nonetheless, this specially priced, 27-minute CD still packs a pleasant surprise or two, as well as a modicum of humor. All arrangements are Schwartz's. “Jingle Bells" opens with the ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Anton Schwartz: The Slow Lane

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With a rich, brawny tenor saxophone tone, Anton Schwartz leads this quartet through a program of slow ballads and medium-tempo fare. His warm saxophone sound captivates the heart and lets you forget the harsh realities. Music for a rainy day? Could be. However, everyone solos and breathes so much subliminal creative energy into the session that things never dull.

Schwartz's title track moves unhurriedly with a blues feeling that recalls the expressive wealth of Stanley Turrentine. His web site indicates that the saxophonist studied with Warne Marsh and Eddie Daniels in New York before moving to the San Francisco Bay ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Anton Schwartz: The Slow Lane

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With his second release, West Coast-based saxophonist Anton Schwartz walks his tenor saxophone down the Slow Lane. Here, the Harvard and Stanford University graduate exhibits style, wit and a predilection for sublime, thoughtful phrasing amid a slightly hard edge, which counters any semblance of saccharine or smooth jazz ideologies. A nice blend indeed as Mr. Schwartz pursues the classics and a few nicely arranged originals augmented by a tight-knit ensemble who vividly demonstrate an acute awareness of Schwartz' stylistic attack.

Besides Schwartz' shrewd articulation as a soloist, his comprehensive approach to each composition deserves a certain degree of praise. On ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Anton Schwartz: The Slow Lane

Read "The Slow Lane" reviewed by

With his second release, West Coast-based saxophonist Anton Schwartz walks his tenor saxophone down the Slow Lane. Here, the Harvard and Stanford University graduate exhibits style, wit and a predilection for sublime, thoughtful phrasing amid a slightly hard edge, which counters any semblance of saccharine or smooth jazz ideologies. A nice blend indeed as Mr. Schwartz pursues the classics and a few nicely arranged originals augmented by a tight-knit ensemble who vividly demonstrate an acute awareness of Schwartz' stylistic attack.

Besides Schwartz' shrewd articulation as a soloist, his comprehensive approach to each composition deserves a certain degree of praise. On ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Anton Schwartz: When Music Calls

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Anton Schwartz, who could have pursued a career in any number of relatively lucrative fields (he earned a B.A. in math and philosophy summa cum laude from Harvard, a masters degree from Stanford), chose music instead -- more specifically, Jazz, which as many people know doesn't always pay the bills. Of course, that's not what it's about. If there's music in one's soul, and he or she has the talent to pursue it, there's really no other choice. So Anton Schwartz, Jazz saxophonist, who gigged around San Francisco for the past three years, has co-produced (with Bud Spangler) his debut ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Anton Schwartz: When Music Calls

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Tenor saxophonist Anton Schwartz makes a strong first impression as both a player and composer on his debut recording. Schwartz has a smooth, full-bodied tenor sound and a straight-ahead, gimmick-free style that emphasizes melody over improvisational fireworks. His patient, solidly swinging approach suggests the influence of players like Ben Webster and Stanley Turrentine.

It is as a composer, though, that Schwartz, who held the tenor sax chair in the Harvard Jazz Band between Don Braden and Josh Redman, really shines. Along with fresh takes on Rodgers and Hart's “Where or When" and Sonny Rollins' “Doxy," he offers eight ...



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