166

Monty Alexander: Live at the Iridium

Franz A. Matzner By

Sign in to view read count
Monty Alexander: Live at the Iridium Celebrating almost fifty years of professional music, Live at the Iridium is a fitting testament to the unique passion and tremendous talent of master improviser Monty Alexander.

Alexander began his career as a youth in Jamaica, where he first encountered jazz through live concerts performed by such iconic figures as Louis Armstrong. This early exposure launched Alexander on a tremendous journey of discovery that would not only bring jazz to Alexander, but the rhythms, sounds, and styles of Jamaica to jazz.

What better way, then, to mark the pianist's ongoing legacy than a recording which captures Alexander in the arena he has come to master: live performance. Those who have heard him play will attest to the infectious quality of his style, bristling with an optimism neither trite nor contrived, but developed over a lifetime of experience.

Performed with Alexander's current preferred lineup of Hassan Shakur on bass and Mark Taylor on drums, with the addition of Robert Thomas, Jr. on hand drums, the album presents nine tunes, including standards and Alexander originals. From the extended, swinging opener "The Work Song"? to the contemplative ballad "The River,"? to the jaunty, hand drum driven "Mount Zanda,"? Alexander's playing bursts with energy and overflows with his characteristic ability to seamlessly incorporate quote after quote, and reference after reference without either breaking stride or subverting the continuity and power of his playing. This is live music as it should be, flowing free and effortlessly from the very center of the musician's personality.

Those familiar with Alexander's exploits and long history will undoubtedly check out this slice of his career, and those unfamiliar will find this a worthy introduction.


Track Listing: 1. The Work Song 2. Slappin' 3. My Mother's Eyes 4. Happylypso/Funji Mama 5. The River 6. Runnin' Away 7. Little Darlin' 8. Mount Zanda 9. That's the Way It Is

Personnel: Monty Alexander: Piano; Hassan Shakur: Bass; Mark Taylor: Drums; Robert Thomas, Jr.: Hand Drums.

Year Released: 2005 | Record Label: Telarc Records | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop

More Articles

Read Backlog CD/LP/Track Review Backlog
by Mark F. Turner
Published: February 24, 2017
Read Over the Rainbow CD/LP/Track Review Over the Rainbow
by Paul Rauch
Published: February 24, 2017
Read Before The Silence CD/LP/Track Review Before The Silence
by John Sharpe
Published: February 24, 2017
Read Process And Reality CD/LP/Track Review Process And Reality
by Mark Corroto
Published: February 24, 2017
Read Masters Legacy Series, Volume 1 CD/LP/Track Review Masters Legacy Series, Volume 1
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 24, 2017
Read The Picasso Zone CD/LP/Track Review The Picasso Zone
by Franz A. Matzner
Published: February 23, 2017
Read "Isang" CD/LP/Track Review Isang
by Roger Farbey
Published: December 24, 2016
Read "Three Worlds: Music From Woolf Works" CD/LP/Track Review Three Worlds: Music From Woolf Works
by Nenad Georgievski
Published: February 4, 2017
Read "Timeless Again" CD/LP/Track Review Timeless Again
by Edward Blanco
Published: April 11, 2016
Read "Risc" CD/LP/Track Review Risc
by Mark Corroto
Published: July 29, 2016
Read "Magia" CD/LP/Track Review Magia
by Mark Sullivan
Published: November 6, 2016
Read "Soul’s Journey Home" CD/LP/Track Review Soul’s Journey Home
by Jim Olin
Published: February 27, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!