Vocalist Dolores Scozzesi is a charter member of the West Coast Jazz Gangstas that also includes Mark Winkler, Jeffery Gimble, Lauren White, Cheryl Bentyne, Sara Gazarek and others too numerous to mention. This is a creative bunch who like to support their own. Scozzesi has just released her follow-up to A Special Taste (Rhombus Records, 2010), Here Comes the Sun with Winkler at the production helm. Eight years is a long time to have to wait for a new word from an artist this fine.
Scozzesi (and Winkler) assemble a simple, yet refined combo to support her, with Quinn Johnson and Andy Langham sharing keyboard duties. The rhythm section is rounded out with bassist Lyman Medeiros and drummer-percussionist Kevin Winard. Scozzesi makes great use of Medeiros, who opens the first three selections on the disc with three disparate rhythm-tempo paradigms. The disc opens with a breakneck "It's Alright with Me" righted by Medeiros' sure time, allowing pianist Langham a nice release solo, followed by the same by Koonse. "I'm in the Mood for Love" begins with a loping bass figure that adds swagger to Scozzesi's already swaggering delivery. Langham provides a swell melodica solo. Medeiros lays down a slow blues groove that turns into as sardonic and confident a performance of Randy Newman's "You Can Leave Your Hat On." Scozzesi sings with a deliciously experienced wink in her voice.
The surprise center of the disc is a carefully crafted "Wild is the Wind" that evolves from Southern California to Buenos Aires in a mere four minutes. Scozzesi scats over a solid Latin vibe that raises the humidity to about 110%. Scozzesi weaves her way through these transitions without leaving any footprints. It is masterful. The title track is given a fast samba treatment that hosts the vocalist's equally adept samba delivery. The most fun on the disc is a salacious "Tequila" where Scozzesi purrs the lyrics with the force of a hurricane. The singer tempers the heat of "Tequila" with introspective treatments of "In My Solitude" and "Harlem Nocturne" giving the entire recital a well balanced body. Welcome back, Dolores Scozzesi!
Track Listing: It’s Alright with Me; I’m In The Mood For Love; You Can Leave Your Hat On; Wild is the Wind; Here Cones the Sun; In My
Solitude; Tequila; A Little Taste; Harlem Nocturne.
Personnel: Dolores Scozzesi: vocals; Quinn Johnson: piano (3,4,6,7) Hammond b3; Andy Langham: piano(1,2,5,8,9), melodica; Lyman
Medeiros: bass; Kevin Winard: drums; Larry Koonse: guitar; Dori Amarillo: guitar; Nolan Shaheed: trumpet.
Rhythm Abstraction: Azure is the first volume of new compositions created as a follow up to 2018’s
release Rhythm Kaleidoscope. As with that release, Brock Avery improvised drum and percussion
solos. Frank Macchia then composed music for woodwinds and orchestra to Brock’s creations. Azure
is the first of three extended play albums of 6-7 compositions which will be released starting in
January and followed up in April and July. In Azure we have a created a group of pieces that continue
our quest for honoring the art of improvisation with a “stream-of-consciousness” sense of
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