Gerry Gibbs: Thrasher Dream Trio (2013)

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Gerry Gibbs: Thrasher Dream Trio
A trio that clings together and swings together. Drummer Gerry Gibbs
Gerry Gibbs
Gerry Gibbs
b.1964
drums
calls this a "dream trio," a description that seems as appropriate as any. Surely, having pianist Kenny Barron
Kenny Barron
Kenny Barron
b.1943
piano
and bassist Ron Carter
Ron Carter
Ron Carter
b.1937
bass
as teammates must seem like a dream come true for any timekeeper. To summarize the point clearly, Barron and Carter are quite simply two of the best at what they do. And as for Gibbs, the new kid on the block, he's more than happy to be traveling in such fast company, and it shows.

Besides keeping effective time, Gibbs wrote four of the album's fifteen songs—one each for Carter, McCoy Tyner
McCoy Tyner
McCoy Tyner
b.1938
piano
, Don Pullen and Gerry's wife, Kyeshie—while Carter composed "A Feeling," Barron "Sunshower." And although it cannot be stated categorically that the material was chosen with Barron and Carter in mind, it clearly takes musicians of their talent and experience to engage, for example, Herbie Hancock
Herbie Hancock
Herbie Hancock
b.1940
piano
's tempestuous "Eye of the Hurricane," at least at the tempo chosen for this animated session. Barron, who is in charge of most things melodic, is comfortable regardless of mood or tempo, from "Hurricane" to Gibbs' luminous ballad, "The Woman on the TV Screen." Carter has his moment in the spotlight on another Gibbs original, "Hear Comes Ron," on which Barron also fashions another in a series of tantalizing solos.

The buoyant curtain-raiser, Thelonious Monk
Thelonious Monk
Thelonious Monk
1917 - 1982
piano
's "Epistrophy," is followed by Hal David / Burt Bacharach's "Promises, Promises" and Gibbs' bow to Tyner, "When I Dream." Johnny Mandel
Johnny Mandel
Johnny Mandel
b.1925
arranger
's "The Shadow of Your Smile" is taken at a snappy pace, as is most everything else, from Hancock's "Tell Me a Bedtime Story" to Stevie Wonder
Stevie Wonder
Stevie Wonder
b.1950
keyboard
's "Don't You Worry 'Bout a Thing," John Coltrane
John Coltrane
John Coltrane
1926 - 1967
saxophone
's "Impressions" and Weldon Irvine's "Mr. Clean." The blues is represented by Gibbs' salute to Pullen, "The Thrasher." Barron, who never seems short of fresh ideas, keeps the lyrical compass steady while Gibbs and Carter lend unflagging support.

As trios go, this one is enticing from any angle. Barron and Carter are bound for various Halls of Fame, and Gibbs more than holds his own among these giants. It's a charming session, well-recorded and generously timed at roughly seventy-five minutes. As Sam Spade observed in The Maltese Falcon, "the stuff that dreams are made of . . ."

Track Listing: Epistrophy; Promises, Promises; When I Dream; The Shadow of Your Smile; The Woman on the TV Screen; The Eye of the Hurricane; Tell Me a Bedtime Story; A Feeling; Don’t You Worry ‘Bout a Thing; Sunshower; Hear Comes Ron; Impressions; The Thrasher; Mr. Clean; The Theme.

Personnel: Kenny Barron: piano; Ron Carter: bass; Gerry Gibbs: drums.

Record Label: Whaling City Sound


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