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It’s always refreshing to witness the emergence of new and vibrant talent. Such is the case with saxophonist Felipe Salles’ new cd Further South. A native of Sao Paulo, Brazil, Salles now lives and performs in the thriving jazz scene of New York. His tenor voice is strong and skillful. His sound is reminiscent of other purveyors of the pervasive saxophone, but it’s his style and more importantly his writing and arranging skills that illuminates his new recording. Simply put, Salles is a very creative and talented musician. When differentiating between the masses of other talented sax players in today’s jazz scene, it’s easy to overlook some of the subtle nuances in terms of arrangement and composition. Salles contains an approach that is full of creativity and energy.
There’s the usual bop, swing, and blues elemental in the initial selection “Triad Again”, but things really take flight on “The Cage” which opens with a moody bow and reed intro and then blossoms into a groove oriented melody. The next selection is the beautiful and airy “I Can See You From Here” with memorable solos from flugelhorn, sax, and piano. Salles’ quintet is extremely talented and cohesive, with ample room to display their skills and voices. Each selection is unique and shows great range and depth. The horn arrangements are well thought out, and show complexity, on the contagious composition “Noite a Dentro”. There’s the quirky and unique “Carla’s Tango” with its odd timing that demonstrates the strong group dynamic of the quintet. With excellent musicianship from all participants and the unique style and inventive voice of Felipe Salles; this is straight up good jazz. Recommended.
Track Listing: 1. Triad Again 2. The Cage 3. I Can See You From Here
4. Duke Ellington's Sound of Love 5. Further South
6. Carla's Tango 7. Noite a Dentro 8. To Whom it May Concern
Personnel: Felipe Salles
Title: Further South
| Year Released: 2002
| Record Label: Unknown label
As a songwriter and vocalist, I love jazz for the experience of being in the center of intense creativity. It is the most potent form of music for keeping the artist and the audience in the 'now. Being in the moment is essential for humans, and we need help in learning how to do that. As a songwriter, I need the depth of musicality that jazz voicings can give my stories. My songs seem light and whimsical, but the message is not.
I met my main collaborator, Mark Fitzgibbon, at one of his gigs. I needed to do my first original album, and his playing was masterful, robust, and beautiful. At the time, I didn't realize how suited we were as a team. We're onto our 4rth album together.
My advice to new listeners is to listen to a really clear and simple version of a song so you can then hear what the musicians are doing and enjoy their creativity and musicality. Also, you have to see jazz live to appreciate it fully. You'll never feel it the same way listening to a CD or online. You need the vibration to go through your body to really get it!
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