Recent Articles

INTERVIEWS

Mark Sherman: Truth Of Who I Am

Read "Mark Sherman: Truth Of Who I Am"

Vibraphonist Mark Sherman likes using the term consummate to describe musicians and colleagues that he's played with. While it would be difficult to speak to every notable musician that Sherman's played for and ask about their opinion about Juilliard graduate and professor, it is safe to assume that they would also describe Sherman as a consummate musician. Mark Sherman has enjoyed a career as a leader with over a dozen albums under his name. While Sherman's albums as a leader have featured legendary saxophonists like Joe Lovano and the late Michael Brecker, Sherman the sideman has played alongside ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Mark Sherman: L. A. Sessions

Read "L. A. Sessions" reviewed by

Vibraphonist Mark Sherman has had a longstanding desire to release an album featuring some of his favorite bebop and standard tunes. Now, in L.A. Sessions, this dream comes true, with happy results.These jazz gems from a half-century ago are played in the tradition, but Sherman and his cohorts lovingly add luster. Chief help comes from Bill Cunliffe, on Hammond B-3 organ (rather than his usual piano), and masterful guitarist John Chiodini, a favorite on the Southern California club scene.Sherman has 30 years of recording, composing, and performing with top players and vocalists. Indicating his prowess, he ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Mark Sherman at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Los Angeles

Read "Mark Sherman at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Los Angeles"

Mark Sherman Jazz Brasserie at the Crowne Plaza Hotel Los Angeles, CA January 29, 2009

The Jazz Brasserie at LA's Crowne Plaza Hotel is perfect for jazz, with its informal seating and focused performance platform. Situated not far from LAX, it's convenient for both Los Angelenos and longer haul travelers.

When vibraphonist Mark Sherman came to town--and hooked up with old friends pianist John Campbell, bassist Tony Dumas and drummer Paul Kreibich--he brought an evening of bebop-flavored modern jazz and plenty of excitement with him. The vibraphone, after all, is one of ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Mark Sherman Quartet: Live at the Bird's Eye

Read "Live at the Bird's Eye" reviewed by

This two-disc live documentation of vibraphonist Mark Sherman's quartet captures a working band at its best. Beautifully recorded before an appreciative audience at the Bird's Eye club in Basel, Switzerland, the quartet delivers a very joyful presentation of their repertoire: Sherman's and pianist Allen Farnham's original compositions coupled with a selection of standards referencing the glorious days of bebop and post-bop, infused with articulate, personal playing and an urgent rhythmic energy. Sherman is accompanied by Farnham who, in this live setting, feels free to push the harmonic envelope of the band. Bassist Dean Johnson propels the rhythmic ideas of his ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Mark Sherman: Family First

Read "Family First" reviewed by

The eminently swinging Family First is vibraphonist Mark Sherman's second release with this working band, the previous one being One Step Closer (CAP, 2005). Sherman has been a stalwart of the mainstream scene for twenty years, and brings a true enthusiasm and deep love to this style of jazz. There can be no argument about the honesty of this recording. The main quartet--Sherman, Joe Magnarelli (trumpet/flugelhorn), Allen Farnham (piano) and Dean Johnson (bass)--are extremely tight, and together produce a distinctive sound where drums are not missed one bit. The pieces, mostly originals by Sherman ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Mark Sherman: Family First

Read "Family First" reviewed by

Vibraphonist/composer Mark Sherman records as he has over the past twenty years and, unlike others who specialize on this instrument, continues to show no interest in expanding his sound to avant-garde or world music influences. What Sherman does exhibit is his use of Milt Jackson's blues and Bobby Hutcherson's shimmering vibes-style. Sherman's Family First again demonstrates that he is one of the best of the current vibraphonists on the scene. This album is very similar to One Step Closer (CAP, 2005) insofar that the personnel is identical, with the exception of tenor saxophonist Joe Lovano, who is not present on ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Mark Sherman: Family First

Read "Family First" reviewed by

Family First, by New York-based vibraphonist and educator Mark Sherman, revolves around similar concepts that reflect his spiritual, artistic, and personal priorities to reach, touch and move people. This is his second album with a working band that has developed a distinctive sound which includes the unison playing of Sherman's vibes and Joe Magnarelli's flugelhorn.

Sherman uses the ten pieces on the recording as vehicles for studying harmonic and rhythmic possibilities, mainly within the post-bop legacy. Examples include “Explorations, (a modern interpretation of John Coltrane's “sheets of sound ), the title piece (where the lush melody provides many avenues for ...

MULTIPLE REVIEWS

Van Gogh By Numbers; One Step Closer

Read "Van Gogh By Numbers; One Step Closer"

The vibraphone is in good hands with two veterans and a rising player featured on a pair of small group sessions.

Joe Locke & Christos Rafalides Van Gogh By Numbers Wire Walker Records 2006

The pairing of vibes and marimba is not unprecedented, but this meeting between vibraphonist Joe Locke and marimba player Christos Rafalides features just the two instruments, and most of the session made up of their fascinating originals. Locke describes his immediately infectious “Van Gogh By Numbers as “creating art by using a formula, though any seasoned ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Mark Sherman: One Step Closer

Read "One Step Closer" reviewed by

Joe Lovano's name may be what will first turn listeners' heads toward One Step Closer, but it will be vibraphonist Mark Sherman and his strong ensemble who will keep their attention fixed. Sherman himself is not as widely known as he could be, but he is by no means a newcomer to either the jazz or the classical scenes, having backed Peggy Lee, Mel Torme, and Gloria Lynne, performed with the New York Philharmonic, and released at least six earlier full-lengths as leader or co-leader. His most recent, The Motive Series (2004), featured yet another high-profile guest artist, Michael Brecker. ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Mark Sherman: One Step Closer

Read "One Step Closer" reviewed by

Vibraphonist Mark Sherman has been on the scene for nearly two decades, working and recording with artists including Peggy Lee, Lena Horne, and Larry Coryell--with whom he was also producer, songwriter, and pianist for five years. So it's somewhat surprising that he's got such a small discography as a leader. Still, last year's The Motive Series, his first album since 1998's High Rollin', garnered significant critical acclaim and was in some respects a debut, insofar as it introduced him to a larger audience. One Step Closer builds on the momentum of The Motive Series, representing Sherman's continued growth as a ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Mark Sherman: One Step Closer

Read "One Step Closer" reviewed by

Vibraphonist Mark Sherman lights fires with this straight-ahead session. His sterling sextet of all-star jazz veterans lends a cohesive hand to interpret his set of original compositions and standards with authority.

Emulating the vocal qualities of his instrument, Sherman spins slow ballads and up-tempo romps with facility. The round edges of his vibraphone tones emit a fluid glow. “Moon River" oozes with sentiment as the ensemble communicates its message convincingly. Allen Farnham's “Hope" rings true with the same kind of heartfelt openness. Sherman's “My Princess" steps into a dream world where day flows into night without pause, and ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Mark Sherman: One Step Closer

Read "One Step Closer" reviewed by

Mark Sherman plays vibes with a brash, sprinting edge and a declamatory, ringing sound. He's also a gifted composer who can place swirling, complex harmonies into a swinging format under catchy, even memorable melodies. He deserves a lot more exposure, and now, with One Step Closer, he's got a terrific record that will widen his audience considerably, if there's any justice.

The album starts with the crackling Sherman original “Modal Blues," a burner with knotty changes that never lets up. Sherman plays a forthright vibes solo, and trumpeter Joe Magnarelli also shines, but guest artist Joe Lovano steals ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Mark Sherman: One Step Closer

Read "One Step Closer" reviewed by

Mark Sherman's sixth album will hopefully do something to spread the word about this talented vibraphonist's work. Sherman is a New Yorker who has a has a degree from Julliard and has worked in a classical music environment. He's been recording since 1986, but he's largely worked as a sideman for other recording artists, including long stints with Peggy Lee and Larry Coryell.

Sherman has assembled a fine group consisting of Joe Magnarelli (trumpet and flugelhorn), Allen Farnham (piano), Dean Johnson (bass), and Tim Horner (drums). In addition, Joe Lovano, one of the most noted saxophonists on today's ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Mark Sherman: One Step Closer

Read "One Step Closer" reviewed by

The vibraphone shines up any ensemble you slip it into, giving the music a lustre and bounce. Just ask Dave Holland, who uses Steve Nelson's mallet expertise in his bands, both large and small.Mark Sherman, Julliard-educated, is a versatile musician who--in addition to his jazz outings--has played in symphonic situations with Leonard Bernstein, Zubin Mehta, and Sir George Soite; and if you want to talk about jazz, he has been a member of guitarist Larry Coryell's ensemble for the past five years. With several CDs out under his own name, most recently The Motive Series (CAP, '04), with ...



Weekly Giveaways

Roscoe Mitchell

Roscoe Mitchell

About | Enter

Peter Lerner

Peter Lerner

About | Enter

Jamie Saft

Jamie Saft

About | Enter

Sun Trio

Sun Trio

About | Enter

Sponsor: Nonesuch Records

Community Members

Join our growing community of
writers, musicians, visual artists and advocates.

Join Us Today!