409

Jeremy Monteiro: Homecoming

Ian Patterson By

Sign in to view read count
Jeremy Monteiro has recorded around twenty albums in two decades, yet surprisingly this is the pianist's first offering of entirely original compositions in fourteen years. They confirm, however, what anyone who has seen him in concert already knows: firstly, that he writes sensitive, well-crafted tunes, and secondly, that as a pianist he is at the top of the tree.

Ably supported by his regular trio members, Syracuse, New York drummer Shawn Kelley and Melbourne bassist Belinda Moody, and augmented by the muscular tones of sax legend Ernie Watts, Monteiro leads the way through a wonderfully rich and varied set. The first two tracks feature Greg Fishman, who plays a jaunty tenor on the striding "Jazzybelle's Shuffle and flute on the Latin "Samba Apassionata. The latter track is dedicated to the late Edmond Branson, Jr., a leading drummer on the Singapore scene.

The tempo remains upbeat on "The Bubala Dance, where Watts adds his fireworks to the proceedings. This is the first of two songs co-written by Monteiro and Watts, who first collaborated almost twenty years ago, and the affinity between them is apparent. The other Monteiro/Watts number, "Remember, is a soulful, meditative piece reminiscent of Wayne Shorter's "Infant Eyes. Belinda Moody, an original voice, shines through on a short yet tasteful bass solo.

One of the highlights is "Inner Voice, in which both Monteiro and Ernie Watts solo elegantly and powerfully. It is a fine study in the art of tension and release. The title track, "Homecoming, highlights the talents of drummer Shawn Kelley and soprano player Ernie Watts. This jubilant calypso is very much in the mould of Sonny Rollins' "St. Thomas and no less enjoyable.

Monteiro succeeds in mixing up the pace and mood of the songs, and one of his strengths as a leader lies in the space he allows his partners. On "Lorna's Kitchen," co-written by bassist Eldee Young, each member of the trio takes his turn in the spotlight, racing along together at a rattling pace. The album closes with Monteiro and Moody's glorious, understated "Blues For Ray, dedicated to the late Ray Charles. The playing on this blues piece is almost respectful, with Monteiro and Moody soloing in beautifully restrained manner over Ron Feuer's Hammond C3 Organ. A burst of gospel-style piano at the end concludes a fine tribute to the great man.

Some may have thought that when Claude Nobbs invited Jeremy Monteiro to play Montreux in 1988, the Singaporean pianist had had his day in the sun. On the evidence of this delightful album, maybe his day in the sun is yet to come.


Track Listing: Jazzybelle's Shuffle; Samba Apassionata; The Bubala Dance; Life Goes On; Inner Voice; Homecoming; Remember (Another Time); Lorna's Kitchen; Blues For Ray.

Personnel: Jeremy Monteiro: piano; Belinda Moody: bass; Shawn Kelley:drums; Ernie Watts:tenor saxophone (3,5,7), soprano saxophone (6); Greg Fishman:tenor saxophone (1), flute (2); Mohamed Noor: Latin percussion (2,6); Ron Feuer:Hammond C3 organ (9).

Title: Homecoming | Year Released: 2006 | Record Label: Jazznote Records


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read The Adventures of Zodd Zundgren CD/LP/Track Review The Adventures of Zodd Zundgren
by Karl Ackermann
Published: October 16, 2017
Read Any Other Way CD/LP/Track Review Any Other Way
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: October 16, 2017
Read The Chase CD/LP/Track Review The Chase
by Roger Farbey
Published: October 16, 2017
Read Paint CD/LP/Track Review Paint
by Jerome Wilson
Published: October 16, 2017
Read A Pouting Grimace CD/LP/Track Review A Pouting Grimace
by Karl Ackermann
Published: October 15, 2017
Read Witches Stew: A Tribute to Miles Davis CD/LP/Track Review Witches Stew: A Tribute to Miles Davis
by Doug Collette
Published: October 15, 2017
Read "One Minute Later" CD/LP/Track Review One Minute Later
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 28, 2017
Read "Kind Of New 2: Blue Is Paris" CD/LP/Track Review Kind Of New 2: Blue Is Paris
by Jeff Winbush
Published: August 3, 2017
Read "Blue Canvas" CD/LP/Track Review Blue Canvas
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: January 4, 2017
Read "Aziza" CD/LP/Track Review Aziza
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: October 19, 2016
Read "Live with a Boom" CD/LP/Track Review Live with a Boom
by Chris M. Slawecki
Published: March 19, 2017
Read "Sektion 1-2" CD/LP/Track Review Sektion 1-2
by Mark Corroto
Published: December 21, 2016

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.