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Enrico Granafei: Alone (and) Together

Angelo Leonardi By

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Enrico Granafei è un chitarrista e armonicista cosentino residente da anni negli Stati Uniti, precisamente a Montclair (New Jersey), dove possiede un ristorante e jazz club, Trumpets. La sua storia musicale inizia dopo un diploma di chitarra nel 1976 al conservatorio dell'Aquila e con l'attività di armonicista a Roma, iniziata alla fine di quel decennio dopo aver ascoltato Toots Thielemans. Negli anni ottanta si trasferisce a New York: inizia a esibirsi nei club e perfeziona la sua tecnica, iscrivendosi alla Manhattan School of Music per seguire il corso di Thielemans. Ne esce con un "masters degree" in jazz.

Dopo l'esordio in solo del 2008 (In Search of the Third Dimension, Miles High Records), Granafei torna in sala discografica privilegiando piccoli organici e ospitando nomi di primo piano come Wallace Roney, Billy Hart, Dave Stryker e Vic Juris. Il repertorio è basato principalmente su standard che l'armonicista tratteggia con buon gusto e ricchezza d'accenti, esaltando il profilo melodico dei brani e la leggibilità degli assoli. Siamo in pieno clima straight-ahead e l'esecuzione di liriche ballad si lega a temi dinamici o serrati come il classico di Parker "Yardbird Suite" o la medley giocata su "Stable Mates," "Giant Steps" e "Cherokee."

L'album è piacevole e dà il meglio nelle esecuzioni di "Alone Together" con Vic Juris, "Gentle Rain" con Diego Lopez e Dave Stryker e "Round Midnight" con Wallace Roney. I momenti più deboli sono invece nelle due versioni di "Estate" e "I Wish You Love": Granafei è un bravo strumentista ma lascia un po' a desiderare come cantante.

Track Listing: Christina; Destiny; I Love You; Body and Soul; Yardbird Suite; Lana; Estate; Round Midnight; Gentle Rain; Alone Together; The Peacocks; Medley (Stablemates/Giant Steps/Cherokee); I Wish You Love.

Personnel: Enrico Granafei: armonica, voce; con: Wallace Roney: tromba; Amina Figarova: pianoforte; Vitali Imereli: violino; Dave Stryker: chitarra; Vic Juris: chitarra; Rick Crane: contrabbasso; Billy Hart: batteria; Diego Lopez: tamburim.

Title: Alone (and) Together | Year Released: 2014 | Record Label: CAP

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