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Joe Jewell has fallen into that always-a-sideman, never-a-leader categorya situation he's been happy with, until now. He's led the Joe Jewell Quartet since 2004, and for Every Note Counts, the guitarist brought the group into the studio for his freshman release.
The program can be tagged "eclectic," representing a wide range of musical styles. The group opens with guitar legend Jim Hall's "Something Special," sounding bright and crisp. R&B artist Bobby Hebb's classic 1966 hit, "Sunny," is next, the light and familiar melody floating over the rhythm section's deep groove.
Jewell has years of classical training under his beltit's Dr. Jewell (University of Southern California), to be formalhaving performed with the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra, among others. He nods to his classical side with the inclusion of "La Catedral (Prelude)/Estate," opening with a work by Augustine Barrios Mangore and leading smoothly into the beautiful Bruno Martino/Bruno Brighetti bossa tune.
The "eclectic" label can sometimes mean a lack of focus, but on Every Note Counts, it applies in the best sense of the word. Jewell and his quartet have crafted a cohesive and novel ensemble sound. The group is anchored by bassist Baba Elefante's thick, pulsating bottom end, which counterpoints Jewell's luminous guitar and Dr. Reed Gratz's glowing Fender Rhodes in front of drummer Mike Bennett's pastel colors and impeccable timekeeping.
The disc also includes the much-covered Sam Rivers tune "Beatrice" and a very bluesy, down-and-dirty "Back at the Chicken Shack," as well as Lerner and Lowe's "I've Grown Accustomed to Your Face." It closes with a relaxed and rollicking take on Thelonious Monk's "In Walked Bud."
Track Listing: Something Special; Sunny; La Catedral (Prelude)/Estate; A Child is Born; Alone Together; Back
at the Chicken Shack; Beatrice; I've Grown Accustomed to Your Face; While We're Young;
Dream Dancing; In Walked Bud.
Personnel: Joe Jewell: guitar; Reed Gratz: Fender Rhodes; Baba Elefante: bass; Mike Bennett: drums,
I was first exposed to jazz when I was studying at the University of Puerto Rico. Nearby, I found a little record shop where the music coming from the store (Taller de Jazz Don Pedro) made me stop. I walked down the short stairs and towards the music and learned that the music playing was Clifford Brown and Max Roach
I was first exposed to jazz when I was studying at the University of Puerto Rico. Nearby, I found a little record shop where the music coming from the store (Taller de Jazz Don Pedro) made me stop. I walked down the short stairs and towards the music and learned that the music playing was Clifford Brown and Max Roach. I fell in love with it. I wondered around until the owner (Pedro Soto) asked if I needed help. He then introduced me to John Coltrane, Miles Davis, Gerry Mulligan and the rest is history. I walked out of the store with my first jazz recording: Clifford Brown and Max Roach at Basin Street.