148

Dan St. Marseille: Departure

Jack Bowers By

Sign in to view read count
Dan St. Marseille: Departure If it’s true, as many say, that Jazz improvisation is actually story–telling by another name, tenor saxophonist Dan St. Marseille is an accomplished narrator who recounts a number of fascinating stories on Departure. None of them, it should be pointed out, is entirely unfamiliar, as comparable versions have been inscribed for a number of years by saxophonists from Stan Getz through Michael Brecker to Joe Lovano. On the other hand, in Jazz, as with snowflakes, no two patterns are ever exactly the same, and even though St. Marseille travels a well–worn path he always finds something fresh and interesting to unearth. The same can be said of pianist Lightsey who shares much of the solo space and puts it to excellent use with a number of sharp and swinging choruses. With Franklin and Burnett, he shapes a rhythm section that’s as sure–handed and dependable as Michael Jordan. As for St. Marseille, he has a deep, full–throated tone, superb technique, and an impressive range that he doesn’t abuse (in other words, no honking, screeching or unendurable rumblings). In these respects, he reminds me of another outstanding young tenor player, Eric Alexander, whose upward course I’ve charted over the past several years. When it comes to story–telling, however, St. Marseille uses dissimilar punctuation, and one would seldom confuse him with Alexander. He’s at his best on the stronger tracks, which include Tadd Dameron’s “If You Could See Me Now,” Tom Harrell’s “Little Dancer” and the lone standard (would that there were more), Ray Noble’s “ The Touch of Your Lips,” and invokes the spirit of Getz for a fiery solo on Jerry Kalaf’s “Reunion Blues.” The rest of the music is quite pleasant, with bonus points for bassist Franklin’s perky bossa, “Little Miss Laurie.” An engaging, well–planned hour of muscular mainstream Jazz.

Track listing: Leila in Blue; Helen; Guapa; Pinocchio; If You Could See Me Now; Little Dancer; Reunion Blues; Little Miss Laurie; The Touch of Your Lips (59:31).


Personnel:

Dan St. Marseille, tenor saxophone; Kirk Lightsey, piano; Henry Franklin, acoustic bass; Carl Burnett, drums; Poncho Sanchez, percussion (on

Title: Departure | Year Released: 1999 | Record Label: Resurgent Music


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Translator's Note CD/LP/Track Review Translator's Note
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: July 28, 2017
Read Then and Now CD/LP/Track Review Then and Now
by Jack Bowers
Published: July 28, 2017
Read Gol CD/LP/Track Review Gol
by James Nadal
Published: July 28, 2017
Read Duo (DCWM) 2013 CD/LP/Track Review Duo (DCWM) 2013
by John Sharpe
Published: July 28, 2017
Read Magnetic CD/LP/Track Review Magnetic
by Jack Bowers
Published: July 27, 2017
Read A Rift in Decorum: Live at the Village Vanguard CD/LP/Track Review A Rift in Decorum: Live at the Village Vanguard
by Mark E. Gallo
Published: July 27, 2017
Read "Blue And Lonesome" CD/LP/Track Review Blue And Lonesome
by Karl Ackermann
Published: December 9, 2016
Read "Nightfall" CD/LP/Track Review Nightfall
by John Kelman
Published: May 22, 2017
Read "Brückenshlag" CD/LP/Track Review Brückenshlag
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: August 9, 2016
Read "Sing House" CD/LP/Track Review Sing House
by Troy Dostert
Published: June 11, 2017
Read "BACHanalia" CD/LP/Track Review BACHanalia
by Jerome Wilson
Published: July 25, 2017
Read "Abbey Road Sessions, Vol 1" CD/LP/Track Review Abbey Road Sessions, Vol 1
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: September 25, 2016

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.