Amazon.com Widgets

Alex Graham: The Good Life (2005)

By Published: | 3,144 views
Alex Graham: The Good Life How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.

A quick trip to multiple reedman Alex Graham's web site finds his sound compared to Wayne Shorter, Dexter Gordon, and Horace Silver, but a couple of spins of The Good Life tells you that these reactions must be referring to the band's collective sound. Graham plays alto sax, flute, and clarinet—the latter two reeds on the opener only—but he's an alto saxophonist first and foremost on this outing. His tone on that main horn sounds like Jackie McLean's to me—tart and tangy, with a little bit of a slur in his articulation and some edge in the sound.

Of the six tunes here, two are originals and four are penned by others—Wayne Shorter's "It's a Long Way Down," Tadd Dameron's "On a Misty Night," Warren/Gordon's "I Had the Craziest Dream," and the Distal/Reardon gem "The Good Life."

The band sounds particularly inspired on the Shorter piece, a driving up-tempo groove where the rhythm section locks in, with a bounce in its step, behind a sizzling Graham. The leader's original "Push" teases with that previously mentioned flute/alto/clarinet interplay on the intro. It's a fine arrangement, and I wish he'd done some more of this, but it's all alto for the rest of the way—and his snappy "Explosion" sounds like a cooker right off a sixties Blue Note set.

"The Good Life" slows the pace and showcases Graham's ballad playing—sweet and soulful, with a contained energy, his finest blowing on the record.

A strong outing from alto saxophonist Alexander Graham.

Track Listing: Push; I Had the Craziest Dream; It's a Long Way Down; The Good Life; Explosion; On a Misty Night.

Personnel: Alex Graham: alto saxophone, flute, clarinet; Rick Roe: piano; Rodney Whitaker: bass; Joe Strasser: drums.

Record Label: Origin Records

Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


comments powered by Disqus
Support All About Jazz Through Amazon

Weekly Giveaways

Carmen Lundy

Carmen Lundy

About | Enter

Wadada Leo Smith

Wadada Leo Smith

About | Enter

Mort Weiss

Mort Weiss

About | Enter

Rotem Sivan

Rotem Sivan

About | Enter

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW

Enter it twice.
To the weekly jazz events calendar

Enter the numbers in the graphic
Enter the code in this picture

Log in

One moment, you will be redirected shortly.