Home » Jazz Articles » Album Review » Gary Brumburgh: Full Circle

3

Gary Brumburgh: Full Circle

By

Sign in to view read count
Gary Brumburgh: Full Circle
A recording dedicated to New York theater and a high school music teacher. Ho, boy, one thinks. "What could go wrong?" Actually, not much. Vocalist Gary Brumburgh is, all snobbery aside, a very pleasant surprise. He swings. He is plenty hip. He has an attractive style and a pleasant, companionable voice. So, what good can come of Nazareth (or anywhere else, for that matter), On Circle, plenty. This is a Friday- afternoon kind of recording, good for unwinding and the performing of rituals of thankful survival in post-COVID America. A good band helps, and fans of jazz harmonica can certainly appreciate Ross Garren's touch. What we have is a mix of studio and live fare— feet tapping, Broadway and dinner theater meets jazz.

This is an eclectic recording with tunes both familiar ("Surrey With The Fringe On Top") and less so ("Soon It's Gonna Rain," from The Fantasticks, which had been running forever by the time the average Boomer hit puberty, and better known for Jerry Orbach and "Try To Remember"). Show tunes abound presented nicely enough to win over the middlebrow. Likeable, listenable sounds. Scott Whitfield's trombone solo introduction to "Surrey" is especially impressive, with the tune itself taken as a ballad. You never heard it that way? Neither did Chet Baker, who played one of the most memorable choruses in his career on it.

Arranger Jamieson Trotter who is also Brumburgh's pianist, has managed to turn music from "South Pacific" into more-than-passable jazz, which is some kind of accomplishment. But those inclined to approach this recording with an open mind might be surprised at how well much of it works. Like someone in your life has undoubtedly remarked, "Try it. You may like it." If Billy May could cast light classics as swing, Trotter and Brumburgh can turn Stephen Sondheim and Richard Rodgers into jazz. Think Buddy Rich and "West Side Story." Cool is in the ear of the beholder, so to speak.

Track Listing

Everybody’s Gotta Be Somewhere; Celebration; Why Should I Wake Up; The Surrey with the Fringe on Top; Happy Talk; Soon It’s Gonna Rain; Sorry-Grateful; You’ve Got to Be Carefully Taught; Love, I Hear; I’m Glad to See You’ve Got What You Want; Far From the Home I Love; Celebration (extended version).

Personnel

Danny Janklow
saxophone
Ross Garren
harmonica
Larry Koonse
guitar, electric
Gabe Davis
bass, acoustic
Leo Costa
drums

Album information

Title: Full Circle | Year Released: 2022 | Record Label: Cafe Pacific Records


Comments

Tags


For the Love of Jazz
Get the Jazz Near You newsletter 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.

More

Ain't No Sunshine
Brother Jack McDuff
Taylor Made
Curtis Taylor
Fathom
John Butcher / Pat Thomas / Dominic Lash / Steve...

Popular

Get more of a good thing!

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories, our special offers, and upcoming jazz events near you.