Autumn in New York comes via Turkish drummer Ferit Odmanwho leads this session featuring an all-American band playing straight-ahead tunesbut this is a far cry from a "drummer's date." Both members of the frontlinetrumpeter Terell Stafford and alto saxophonist Vincent Herringwere referred to as "young lions" early in their careers, and sound very much at home throughout the set, their ensemble playing a testament that, by this point, they are clear mainstays of the scene. Stafford's tone is warm and personal, and his reading of the title tune is delivered with tender familiarity. The lyrics of the song are included in the liner notes, and the trumpeter's feature evokes a feeling of that special time in that special place.
Herring still blows a hot, energetic, post-bop horn. Lyrics are also included for "My Ideal," a feature for the altoist, with Odman admitting he is still looking for that special someone. What he has found, however, is the best partner in a rhythm section that a drummer could hope for. Peter Washington has been holding down the anchor for well over 20 years now, and is certainly one of the most dependable timekeepers in the business, possessing a combination of full, round tone and a bouncy agility that has made him much sought after and highly regarded. When he does get a chance to blow, as he does on "My Ideal," he shows what a musical force he is, and his solo is a high point of the recording.
Jazz has a long tradition of Americans going abroad, some for longer periods than others. Whether it is to live, work or play festivals, jazz remains largely an American art form, and an export which is still well-received in far-off places. Turkish musicians have been playing jazz for quite some time, with schools and conservatories for jazz studies popping up in the country. The best place to learn, however, will always be the bandstand. Odman has the vocabulary, is well-versed in the idiom and does a nice job of accompanying his band mates throughout. His main contribution as leader on this date, however, is in assembling the band and picking the tunes. He's done that well, and his visitors do their job wonderfully also. More sessions like this and perhaps there will be some "young lions" emerging amongst the young Turks.
Step Lighty; Alter Ego; Autumn in New York; The Soulful Mr. Timmons;
Hindsight; My Ideal; Changing of the Guard.
Terell Stafford: trumpet; Vincent Herring: alto saxophone; Anthony Wonsey: piano; Peter Washington: bass; Ferit Odman: drums.