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Joey DeFrancesco: Goodfellas

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Joey DeFrancesco, who was heavily influenced by organ maestro Jimmy Smith, is one of the most energetic and expressive Hammond B-3 players on the scene today. His sound combines huge slabs of swirling block chords with nimble, fleet-fingered keyboard runs. While the concept behind Goodfellas may seem a bit obvious and kitschy — three Italian-Americans working out on some "Italian inspired" standards — there is enough good music on this CD to make it a worthwhile purchase. The mood on this 12-tune collection ranges from the gentle swing of Speak Softly Love and Fly Me To The Moon to funky, flat-out, up-tempo barn burners like Malafemmena and Ya See What I'm Sayin'? Although Joey had never recorded with guitarist Frank Vignola or drummer Joe Ascione, this trio is airtight. Vignola is the real surprise here, his crystal clear tone and precise solos are impressive. Hammond organ fans may find this is one CD you can't refuse.....hey fahgettaboutit! ***

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