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No one will be able to sleep all through this night, a collection of bright, swinging performances from this gifted Rochester trio, whose long and happy association is evident in their relaxed, empathic interplay. Here, guitarist Bob Sneider, bassist Phil Flanigan and drummer Mike Melito are joined by a stellar guest roster, creating a pleasing balance between the five trio and six quartet tracks. It's a solid and spirited session that includes some lesser-known tunes by Jackie McLean and Billy Higgins as well as a buffet of old favorites, all beautifully rendered.
Aside from its consistently high level of musicianship, what makes this CD especially noteworthy is its light-hearted wit. Hear, for example, the way these guys rock "You and the Night and the Music, with Melito dancing on the rim and a bounty of fine solos all around. (Question: Why doesn't trumpeter John Sneider record more?) Equally delightful are "Baby Won't You Please Say Yes, "Love for Sale, and the bluesy little closer: Barney Kessel's "Be Deedle De Do. Part of the fun is catching all the quotes, which are subtly woven rather than sledge-hammered in.
All told, All Through the Night is a bunch of good friends having fun, and it's contagious. A great ride.
Track Listing: All Through the Night, Milestones, Dream Dancing, You and the Night and the Music; Baby Won
Personnel: Bob Sneider: guitar; Phil Flanigan: bass; Mike Melito: drums; Vincent Herring: alto saxophone (8, 10); John Sneider: trumpet (4, 9); John Nugent: tenor saxophone (4, 9); David Hazeltine: piano (2, 6).
As a songwriter and vocalist, I love jazz for the experience of being in the center of intense creativity. It is the most potent form of music for keeping the artist and the audience in the 'now. Being in the moment is essential for humans, and we need help in learning how to do that. As a songwriter, I need the depth of musicality that jazz voicings can give my stories. My songs seem light and whimsical, but the message is not.
I met my main collaborator, Mark Fitzgibbon, at one of his gigs. I needed to do my first original album, and his playing was masterful, robust, and beautiful. At the time, I didn't realize how suited we were as a team. We're onto our 4rth album together.
My advice to new listeners is to listen to a really clear and simple version of a song so you can then hear what the musicians are doing and enjoy their creativity and musicality. Also, you have to see jazz live to appreciate it fully. You'll never feel it the same way listening to a CD or online. You need the vibration to go through your body to really get it!
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