Joe's 3 and Freddie's 5

Andrew Velez By

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Joe Giglio Trio
3 Spirits
Bella Firenze


Bucky Pizzarelli
5 For Freddie: Bucky Pizzarelli's Tribute to Freddie Green

Sound sparks fly even before guitarist Joe Giglio jumps into the opener on this aptly named 3 Spirits set. For his composition "107 West , it's Rob Thomas' freewheeling violin that gets things going with an irrepressible sound reminiscent of Stephane Grappelli. Together he and Giglio make quite a pair, recalling the great duets with Django Reinhardt.

The additional flavor added by Ron McClure's bass grounds this tightly knit trio. Their intensely packed sound really gets going with Charlie Parker's "Donna Lee , turning into an extended string sizzler by all concerned. Any thoughts the session is merely lingering nostalgia for Django & company are quickly burned off.

A quartet of lighthearted vocals by Giglio of classics from the American songbook adds another flavor to the set. His singing style is casual and friendly in the manner of Matt Dennis. Typical is his approach to Rodgers & Hart's "My Romance , as breezily welcome as the first cold beer on a hot afternoon.

5 For Freddie - Bucky's Tribute to Freddie Green is a celebration of one master of the rhythm guitar by another. Known as "Pepper to his Basie bandmates in the '30s and '40s, Green was central to a group within the band known as "The All-American Rhythm Section . The perfect timing, restraint and irresistible swing which characterized their sound makes this current set a joy. Bucky Pizzarelli, John Bunch, Warren Vaché, Jay Leonhart and Mickey Roker sit in for Green, Basie, "Sweets Edison, Walter Page and Jo Jones respectively. Each track radiates the inventiveness and elegant, tasteful swing of the group it salutes.

"Shiny Stockings , a Frank Foster tune that became a Basie classic, is a particular joy. Vaché toots and growls deliciously before Pizzarelli joins him, strumming with that ease that only comes with great skill. Dizzy Gillespie and Charlie Parker's "Groovin' High opens the set with a cascade from John Bunch's keyboard. A genial salute to Pizzarelli's time spent playing with Gillespie, he gently kicks the melody up a couple of notches as Vaché provides warmly discrete embellishment. Blending timing, tempo and rhythm into straight-ahead, no-nonsense jazz, the fun these guys are having is contagious.

Tracks and Personnel

3 Spirits

Tracks: 107 West; My Romance; Zooey's Loft; Addio...for Jim Fisch; Donna Lee; It's You Or No One; All 3 Things; 317 E. 32nd; The Nearness of You; Another Fall, Another Spring; These Foolish Things.

Personnel: Joe Giglio: guitars & vocals; Rob Thomas: violin; Ron McClure: bass.

5 For Freddie: Bucky's Tribute to Freddie Green

Tracks: Groovin' High; Bustin' Suds; For Lena and Lennie; Up in the Blues; Down for Double; High Tide; Dreamsville; Shiny Stockings; Centerpiece; Corner Pocket; All of Me; Sophisticated Swing; Lester Leaps In.

Personnel: Bucky Pizzarelli: guitar, leader; Warren Vache: cornet; John Bunch: piano; Jay Leonhart: bass; Mickey Roker: drums.


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