There are several ways of judging the success of a recording. Perhaps a hearing makes the listener, if a musician, want to sit in and jam. That is a good sign. Then there is the "sit still test." For many, the direct, emotional and physical connection between music and brain leaves them simply hanging out, absence of motion impossible, sitting still not an option. Grant Geissman's Blooz happily passes both tests. Turn the volume up and a blues party comes your way. What more could a person want?
Geissman, a celebrated veteran player and composer, has assembled an all-star lineup to accompany him on his journey through the blues, funky, cool, and otherwise. You could not do much better, if at all.
Full disclosure, "Whitewalls and Big Fins" will kill listeners of a certain vintage, but that is age speaking, not to mention distant memories of a relative's 58 El Dorado Caddy. No, Randy Brecker is not everywhere. He only seems to be everywhere, and to very good effect on "Preach," plus a Hammond B3. "Carlos en Siete" is indeed in seven, with Russell Ferrante and a brace of compañeros including David Garfield and percussion no end. Tom Scott makes an appearance on "This and That." And anyone still hankering for founding fathers of fusion will get Robben Ford on "Robben's Hood."
This is one of those cool recordings that someone will put aside for a rainy day, or for when the world looks as bleak as it customarily does. As the song once said, you can't sit down, and with Grant Geissman's Blooz, you cannot. As a bonus, all the tunes are originals, if "Green Dolphin Street" for the nth time has got you down. Good tunes, great players. A simple formula, eh?
Preach; Side Hustle; Carlos En Siete; Time Enough At Last; Fat Back; Rage Cage; Robben's Hood; One G and Two
J's; Stranger Danger; Whitewalls and Big Fins; This and That; Sorry Not Sorry.
All About Jazz has been a pillar of jazz since 1995, championing it as an art form and, more importantly, supporting the musicians who create it. Our enduring commitment has made "AAJ" one of the most culturally important websites of its kind, read by hundreds of thousands of fans, musicians and industry figures every month.
You Can Help
To expand our coverage even further and develop new means to foster jazz discovery and connectivity we need your help. You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky ads plus provide access to future articles for a full year. This winning combination will vastly improve your AAJ experience and allow us to vigorously build on the pioneering work we first started in 1995. So enjoy an ad-free AAJ experience and help us remain a positive beacon for jazz by making a donation today.