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Bobby Selvaggio: Short Stories (2014)

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Bobby Selvaggio: Short Stories How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.

Like the Japanese calligraphy art know as ensō, the condensed and succinct introduction alto saxophonist Bobby Selvaggio
Bobby Selvaggio
Bobby Selvaggio
b.1969
sax, alto
delivers on the track "Price Of Being (Intro)" is a disciplined stroke, delivered with an ease and elegance that belies the character and control required for such a statement. He works his instrument through this exercise with such command and strength, the sound gives the impression it is effortless.

But then, such is the dominion Selvaggio exhibits on his eighth recording as a leader. Short Stories follows Way Of Being (Arabesque, 2013) and Grass Roots Movement (Arabesque, 2011). Where Way Of Being was part of his Grass Roots Movement band and part trio, this outing gets dialed-in with his working trio of bassist Ashley Summers and drummer Chris Baker. Their connectivity and the inclusion of pianist Aaron Goldberg (Guillermo Klein, Joshua Redman
Joshua Redman
Joshua Redman
b.1969
saxophone
, The Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra) elevates this recording into a special category.

The nine tracks, all composed by Selvaggio showcase a post-bop style that recalls Bobby Watson
Bobby Watson
Bobby Watson
b.1953
sax, alto
's band Horizon. Selvaggio's bright tone kicks off "Eye Of Jupiter," with a quick- silveriness that matches tight twists with melodious passages. Goldberg's piano is not content to just accompany, he's on this session to cajole. The pair wrap themselves into a cat-and- mouse workout on "Blues For J," with a friendly one-upmanship that burns a red hot flame as they trade-off. The ballad "Boulevard at Capucines in Paris" is a vehicle for a different emotion and features Summer's bass and some deft brushwork by Baker. Where other saxophonists dare not to express such a wide appetite for the savory, sweet, and umami, Selvaggio's arsenal contains all the flavors. His stunning solo (intro) to "Price of Being" expands into a piece that recalls the music of Mike Mainieri
Mike Mainieri
Mike Mainieri
b.1938
vibraphone
and Michael Brecker
Michael Brecker
Michael Brecker
1949 - 2007
sax, tenor
's band Steps Ahead from the 1980s. Selvaggio's music and playing has blossomed into a full-fledged force in the jazz world.

Track Listing: Eye of Jupiter; Song for Rebecca; Price of Being (Intro); Price of Being; Rubber Monkeys; Boulevard at Capucines in Paris; Ceprano Man; Blues for J; Summers End.

Personnel: Bobby Selvaggio: alto saxophone; Aaron Goldberg: piano; Ashley Summers: bass; Chris Baker: drums.

Record Label: Origin Records

Style: Modern Jazz


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