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by Jim Santella
Recorded live at Chicago's Green Mill and Edgewater Lounge, Mighty Burner pays homage to organist Charles Earland, with whom saxophonist Frank Catalano worked from 1995-99. Earland, who died of a heart attack at age 58 on December 11, 1999, mentored younger jazz artists during his final years. Catalano, 27, was one of those younger artists who learned his lessons well. With a piano trio in support, he blows all night long through both of these sessions. The energy! No wonder ...read more
by Mark Corroto
If I were a saxophonist, I certainly would want to be Maceo Parker for a day. Frank catalano Certainly had the long-time James Brown sideman on his mind when he recorded Mighty Burner.
With three fine Delmark hard bop discs under his belt, the twenty-something Chicagoan unleashes this crowd-pleasing live session. He takes no pauses, focusing on quartet music, soloing liberally and barely pausing for a minimal drum solo by Robert Gay. The title track is a rocked-out blues that ...read more
by Jack Bowers
Babyfaced Frank Catalano, who looks barely old enough to shave, wields his razorsharp tenor saxophone like a machete on Pins ‘n’ Needles to slice and dice a trio of standards, three of his own compositions and Charlie Parker’s “Scrapple from the Apple,” ably supported by renowned trumpet master Randy Brecker (on three selections) and an incendiary rhythm section spearheaded by pianist Willie Pickens, anchored by bassist Larry Gray and driven by drummer Joel Spencer. Catalano, a Chicagoan who’s still in ...read more
by Derek Taylor
Not so long ago an adversarial relationship between the so-called camps of mainstream and avant-garde was the talk of the jazz press. Ostensibly led by the preening mouthpiece of Wynton Marsalis many of the “young lions” were openly and sometimes virulently critical of their creative improvising counterparts on the freer side of the fence. Things have since tempered as evidenced by Marsalis’ open admiration of Ornette Coleman and his brother Branford’s futile championing of saxophonist David S. Ware as A&R ...read more