Tony Monaco and his trio sit down and do business with Joey DeFrancesco and his trio. All at the same time. As the two trios trade off with seamless interaction, the momentum switches from one side to the other. One organist follows the other, and one guitarist follows the other, in up-tempo battles that rage with creative juices flowing.
Monaco and DeFrancesco are using a new generation Hammond model. While credit must be given to the instrument for the sparkling crisp sounds it offers, it takes soul to interpret the way these two masters do. Now established veterans, both leaders make this one a session to remember.
DeFrancesco’s muted and open trumpet feature on “Aglio e Olio” recalls the pioneering spirit of Dizzy Gillespie when jazz was undergoing a major change. Monaco provides an authentic folk scene with a cappella accordion on “Waltz of the Angels.” Then, Monaco’s accordion and DeFrancesco’s open horn create an Italian wedding party atmosphere on “Oh Marie.” As they hit their stride, two pumped-up Hammond B3s retake the spotlight with knees bending and feet flying. The bride and groom are sure going to be tired when this party’s over. Everyone is having a delicious good time.
I love jazz because it is both challenging and exhilarating, and the endeavor of improvisation is the highest form of art.
I met so many great musicians--including my two earliest heroes, Maynard Ferguson and Dizzy Gillespie--by attending concerts
and being willing to treat them with the respect they deserve.
The best show I ever attended was the Pat Metheny/Ornette Coleman Song X concert at Cornell University.
The first jazz record I bought was an RCA compilation by Dizzy Gillespie.
My advice to new listeners is to not be afraid to listen to something because you're not familiar with the artists or the band or
the genre or anything - this is music that is best experienced through discovery.