Dust off that martini shaker one more time, folks- the cocktail movement is not quite dead....that is, at least if music like this remains readily available!
Though known for impressive catalog artists like Michael Feinstein and John Patitucci and the very impressive Joey DeFrancesco, Concord Jazz has added another impressive chapter to their copy cat compilation series Jazz Mood with this latest collection of old and new standards.
Opening with Mr. Francesco’s spacey swing through "Fly Me to the Moon," Concord’s Cocktail Party invites intelligent imbibers to come fly with Monty Alexander by way of the Cahn/Van Heusen classic. Flip Phillips and Scott Hamilton put Benny Goodman’s "A Smooth One" on ice before the album slips into something even more cool and comfortable with help from Kenny Burrell’s worry-free fretting of the Mercer/Ellington/Strayhorn triumph "Satin Doll." Fats Waller’s "Jitterbug Waltz" spills on the carpet, but Herb Ellis and Ray Brown piok up that "Inka-Dinka-Do" so stealthily that neither Marian McPartland and Tommy Flanagan’s sharp and bouncy "Jeepers Creepers" peepers nor even Jimmy Bruno’s wending "Witchcraft" can put it back down. But who cares?
It’s a party and Ruby Braff, for one, says "I Want to Be Happy" on his venerable horn. Gene Harris helps out with a warm and creamy "Hot Toddy," and Dave McKenna deftly puts "A Shine on Your Shoes." But in the end, Ken Peplowski gently reminds us all that’s it’s just "Pretend." Oh well, it was fun while it lasted!
Track Listing: 1. Fly Me to the Moon - Joey DeFrancesco's Goodfellas
2. Come Fly With Me - A Smooth One
3. Smooth One - Scott Hamilton
4. Satin Doll - Kenny Burrell
5. Jitterbug Waltz - Stanley Cowell
6. Inka Dinka Doo - Ray Brown
7. Jeepers Creepers - Tommy Flanagan
8. Witchcraft - Jimmy Bruno
9. I Want to Be Happy - Ruby Braff
10. Hot Toddy - Gene Harris
11. Shine on Your Shoes - Dave McKenna
12. Pretend - Ken Peplowski
13. Ja-Da - Ray Brown Trio
I love jazz because it's sophisticated, international, atmospheric yet free, cool and warm.
I was first exposed to jazz through the sultry voice and flawless swing of my mother.
I met Mark Murphy, David Linx, Kurt Elling, and Youn Sun Nah.
The best show I ever attended was Youn Sun Nah in Paris.
The first jazz record I bought was Native Dancer by Wayne Shorter and Milton Nascimento
My advice to new listeners: open your mind and your ears, forget about structure, feel the textures.
Go see live music and keep buying CDs!