449

Roy Hargrove: Earfood

Tom Greenland By

Sign in to view read count
Trumpeter Roy Hargrove's 15th release, Earfood, is one of his best, showing that this not-so-young lion is in top shape. The disc features Justin Robinson (alto/flute), Gerald Clayton (piano), Danton Boller (bass) and Montez Coleman (drums), with Robinson's gushing alto ebullience, slightly loose around the edges, the perfect foil for Hargrove's eclectic moods, which range from brash and feisty to moody and introspective. Clayton is a real find, who 'speaks' swing, blues and gospel with fluency and feeling.

Earfood is a well-balanced banquet, offering a funky hard bop appetizer, straight-eighth-note cookers, a healthy portion of ballads and a live gospel send-up for dessert. "Strasbourg/St. Denis" is crisp and catchy and "Joy is Sorrow Unmasked" a tenderly inflected rumination. Lou Marini's "Starmaker," Kurt Weill's "Speak Low" and "Rouge," played out-of-tempo, are all standout ballad performances, often featuring the leader's irenic flugelhorn.

On Aug. 1st 2008, Hargrove brought his big band (including the entire Earfood combo) to the Central Park bandshell in New York. In spite of heavy rainshowers midway through the set, hardcore fans were rewarded with a generous set of stirring arrangements and dynamic soloing, including a guest appearance by vocalist Roberta Gambarini who scatted with dazzling brilliance over "On the Sunny Side of the Street," the first of three encore numbers. Hargrove even sang one himself, "September in the Rain," featuring lively call-and-response between himself and the band.

Track Listing: I'm Not So Sure; Brown; Strasbourg/St. Denis; Starmaker; Joy is Sorrow Unmasked; The Singer; Rouge; Mr. Clean; Style; Divine; To Wisdom the Prize; Speak Low; Bring it on Home to Me.

Personnel: Roy Hargrove: Trumpet and flugelhorn; Justin Robinson: alto sax and flute; Gerald Clayton: piano; Danton Boller: bass; Montez Coleman: drums.

Title: Earfood | Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: Decca Music Group


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Whispers on the Wind CD/LP/Track Review Whispers on the Wind
by Jack Bowers
Published: October 23, 2017
Read Shropshire Lads: Songs to the Poems of AE Housman CD/LP/Track Review Shropshire Lads: Songs to the Poems of AE Housman
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: October 23, 2017
Read Heptagon CD/LP/Track Review Heptagon
by Glenn Astarita
Published: October 23, 2017
Read ON Tour CD/LP/Track Review ON Tour
by John Kelman
Published: October 22, 2017
Read On a Distant Shore CD/LP/Track Review On a Distant Shore
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: October 22, 2017
Read Friends & Heroes: Guitar Duets CD/LP/Track Review Friends & Heroes: Guitar Duets
by Roger Farbey
Published: October 22, 2017
Read "Live at Club Helsinki" CD/LP/Track Review Live at Club Helsinki
by Chris M. Slawecki
Published: June 5, 2017
Read "Mikrojazz!: Neue Expressionistische Musik" CD/LP/Track Review Mikrojazz!: Neue Expressionistische Musik
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: September 5, 2017
Read "Nellie Bly Project" CD/LP/Track Review Nellie Bly Project
by Paul Rauch
Published: August 11, 2017
Read "Desire & Freedom" CD/LP/Track Review Desire & Freedom
by Glenn Astarita
Published: February 19, 2017
Read "Sounding Tears" CD/LP/Track Review Sounding Tears
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: May 16, 2017
Read "Moments Of Fatherhood" CD/LP/Track Review Moments Of Fatherhood
by John Sharpe
Published: April 9, 2017

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY IT!  

Support our sponsor

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

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