Tenor saxophonist Joel Frahm has teamed up with pianist/organist Bruce Katz for Project A, a tribute to Aretha Franklin and containing material with which she is associated. Although Frahm's foundation is jazz, there is a soul-filled side of him that enjoys working with the likes of Katz, renowned for his work with the Allman Brothers Band. The pair are joined by Chris Vitarello (guitar), Marty Ballou (acoustic bass), Jerry Jemmott (electric bass), Lorne Entress and Ralph Rosen (drums), with baritone saxophonist Jay Collins and trumpeter Kenny Rampton. The personnel changes from track-to-track but there are some where both drummers and ...read more
Joel Frahm and Bruce KatzJazz Standard New York, New York September 1, 2009
In celebration of the release of Project A (Anzic Records), co-bandleaders Joel Frahm (tenor saxophone) and Bruce Katz (piano, B3 and Wurlitzer) took the stage at the famed Manhattan jazz club to showcase what they described as a jazz re-reading" of the music of Aretha Franklin.
The band started as a quintet with the two leaders backed by Chris Vitarello (electric guitar), Jerry Jemmott (electric bass) and Lorne Entress (drums), kicking off with the CD's opening number, The House That Jack ...read more
Joel Frahm and Bruce Katz's Project A is not a codename for a scientific research program or some covert operation, but, instead, a finger-snapping, toe-tapping tribute to the original Queen of Soul, singer Aretha Franklin. Frahm, a superlative saxophonist who has worked with Maynard Ferguson, Brad Mehldau and Kurt Rosenwinkel, is joined by Bruce Katz, a master Hammond B3 player and pianist, who is well known in R&B, blues and rock circles, having performed with Gregg Allman and Ronnie Earl & the Broadcasters. Joined with two drummers and two bassists who are divided between ...read more
Nowhere in jazz is the soil so rich as it is in the area of female vocals. Major label, independents, melting pots and old school, there are vocal releases appealing to any persnickety taste. Such a diverse marketplace is to the fortune of the listening public. This fortune is magnified when two dramatically different singers share a common denominator: in the cases of Irene Atman and Daniela Schachter that common denominator is New York tenor saxophonist Joel Frahm on the two recordings New York Rendezvous and Purple Butterfly. Frahm provides the common thread between these two otherwise very different singers ...read more
Joel Frahm is a big, gentle looking man with a big, warm sound on the tenor saxophone. On We Used To Dance, he reunites with pianist Kenny Barron, with whom Frahm studied at the Rutgers University jazz program. Frahm has also enlisted the services of the rest of the rhythm section that contributed so much to the later recordings of Stan Getz: bassist Rufus Reid and drummer Victor Lewis. The result is a solid disc of outstanding music.
Frahm can play, and shows it on all ten tracks, including two well-known standards ("Spring Can Really Hang ...read more
Jason Crane interviews saxophonist Joel Frahm. Frahm is one of the busiest saxophonists on the scene today. You'll find him on recordings with pianist Brad Mehldau, vocalist Jane Monheit, trumpeter Avishai Cohen, drummers Matt Wilson and Pete Zimmer, and the Waverly 7. His fourth record as a leader, We Used To Dance (Anzic Records, 2007), brings together a classic rhythm section that played with Stan Getz on some of his final recordings: pianist Kenny Barron, bassist Rufus Reid and drummer Victor Lewis. Frahm wrote many of the tunes on the record and also paid homage to those ...read more
Working with pianist Kenny Barron, bassist Rufus Reid and drummer Victor Lewis on a straight-ahead jazz session would be a real treat for anyone. It turns out to be especially fruitful for tenor saxophonist Joel Frahm, who delivers this program of standards and originals with an artist's delicate touch. The proud owner of a rich, luxurious tone, the saxophonist interprets ballads, blues and up-tempo romps with clarity while swinging in a rhythmic groove when the situation permits. He and this stellar trio are equally at ease with tender ballads such as Spring Can Really Hang You Up the Most, My ...read more