With a solid organ trio backing him, tenor saxophonist David Sills grabs your attention with his very first solo on Eastern View 's opener, the Sills-penned (as are all the songs here) "New Break." The tune opens with an organ-supplied bass groove backed by shimmering cymbals; then the guitar and sax enter, peeling off some tangy mid-tempo lines, until the accompaniment pulls back and Sills steps out front, with a somewhat restrained (nicely so) and articulate, straightforward monolgue in front of the always inpsired trio. Organist Joe Bagg has a subtle but very on-target touch as he paints his cool-toned pastel washes behind Sills and guitarist Larry Koonse.
And that sets the stage for the entire disc: a fine organ trio backing a talented saxophonist on ten engaging mainstream tunes.
Sills' tone has been compared to the sounds of Stan Getz and Joe Henderson. I'd lean toward the Henderson side of the comparison, and throw in some Hank Mobley into the mix, too. You can't help sounding bluesy when you've got an inspired organ trio behind you. Eastern View has a definite Blue Note Records circa-'60s vibe to ita killer organ trio with a creatively clean-blowing saxophonist out front rolling through a bunch of straight-ahead originals. And Sills has an engaging way of going after his solos without flash or B.S., telling his personal stories while adding little Joe Henderson-like surprises along the way, small flurries that catch you a bit off-guard but still fit snuggly into his story lines.
A very cool-sounding group doing more than its share to keep mainstream sounds alive and vibrant.
I was first exposed to jazz when I was tiny. My earliest memory is watching Ella Fitzgerald scat on a Christmas special when I was no older than four. Like many who are from tiny towns, my first extended exposure was listening to the high school jazz band when I was a kid
I was first exposed to jazz when I was tiny. My earliest memory is watching Ella Fitzgerald scat on a Christmas special when I was no older than four. Like many who are from tiny towns, my first extended exposure was listening to the high school jazz band when I was a kid. For some reason I remember an arrangement of Hey Jude they did. My first real exposure was Stan Kenton in the Smithville, MO high school gym. Kenton and the band director there were old friends, so he would play there from time to time. My dad took me without telling me where we were going and it was the only show he ever took me to. I remember that Bobby Shew played Send In Clowns and I damn near levitated I was so excited. The huge sound and amazing chords floored me. I believe I was 13 at the time. I immediately started practicing and taking lessons. Music became a passion and nearly a career. I also listened to Dick Wright's Jazz Show on KANU every night. I can't even start to explain what I learned lying in bed listening to Dick talk about jazz. I met him once when I was struggling to put together a solo for Joy Spring playing in a combo at KU. Stopped by his office and asked for recommendations. He showed up at my jazz ensemble rehearsal the next day with a tape with example solos. What a kind man Dick Wright was.
My advice to new listeners is to stop worrying about what music is important and focus on music you like. I spent quite a bit of my music life listening to important music I didn't necessarily like. Must say I have quite a bit more fun now listening to music that I deeply enjoy. Some of it is even important.
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