222

Tangria Jazz Group: Mebane's Eleven

Dan McClenaghan By

Sign in to view read count
Tangria Jazz Group: Mebane's Eleven "Little melodies come to me when I'm walking." So says drummer/percussionist/composer Sheryl Mebane, the leader of the San Francisco bay area-based Tangria Jazz Group. And that's probably as good a description of the mystery of the creative process as you'll hear.

Mebane's vision, on Mebane's Eleven, focuses in on some of those unfailingly engaging melodies. The band is a piano trio, with a lot of sparkle—pianist Simon Rochester brightens the sound up with a good dose of Fender Rhodes along with the acoustic keys. Justin Hellman adds a solid heartbeat on bass; and Mebane rolls through various percussion modes on drums, jembe and vibes.

Those melodies that come to Mebane have a straighforward, energetic quality, a Bill Evans delicacy and prettiness; and the two covers slipped in with Mebane's seven originals, Miles Davis' "Solar" and Eddie Harris' "Freedom Jazz Dance," featured on Davis' Miles Smiles (Columbia, 1966), gives you an idea of the influences.

The disc opens with "Teach Yourself to Live Elsewhere," a tune with a wistful, Bill Evans feeling, a melancholy sound with an insistent rhythmic drive and some creative comping from pianist Rochester behind Hellman's bass solo. "Money Time" slips deeply inward on an extended piano intro that blossoms in the direction of extroversion when Mebane and Hellman come in.

"Warm" features Mebane on jembe, on a tune with a sultry, dark mood; "Ethan's Song" brings in electric violinist Belinda Catalona, adding a folk music quality to a very modern sound.

The last two tunes on the disc are guest artist revisitations of "Money Time" and "Warm," featuring Jason Bringetto on guitar, violinist Catalona again with her mandolin on "Money Time," along with Giotto Harrison on copper pipes and Alex Pasternak on bass for a closing of the show with more of a world music feeling.

Mebane's Eleven offers up a refreshing take on the piano trio format, with the ending guest spot opening the focus up further.


Track Listing: Teach Yourself to Live Elsewhere; Money Time; Warm; Ethan's Song; Solar; Freedom Jazz Dance; Reactions; Gemini; Breathe Easy; Money Time (with guests); Warm (with guests).

Personnel: Justin Hellman: bass (1-9); Sheryl Mebane: drums, jembe (3, 8, 11), vibes (8), percussion (8, 10, 11). Guest Artists: James Bringetto: guitar (10, 11); Belinda Catalona: electric violin (4, 10, 11); mandolin (10); Giotto Harrison: copper pipes (11); Alex Pasternak: bass (10, 11)

Year Released: 2007 | Record Label: Self Produced | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop

More Articles

Read June CD/LP/Track Review June
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 19, 2017
Read The Final Concert CD/LP/Track Review The Final Concert
by John Sharpe
Published: February 19, 2017
Read On Hollywood Boulevard CD/LP/Track Review On Hollywood Boulevard
by Budd Kopman
Published: February 19, 2017
Read Desire & Freedom CD/LP/Track Review Desire & Freedom
by Glenn Astarita
Published: February 19, 2017
Read The Motorman's Son CD/LP/Track Review The Motorman's Son
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 18, 2017
Read "The Havana Sessions" CD/LP/Track Review The Havana Sessions
by James Nadal
Published: June 11, 2016
Read "Mt. Crushmore" CD/LP/Track Review Mt. Crushmore
by Karl Ackermann
Published: January 8, 2017
Read "Upward Spiral" CD/LP/Track Review Upward Spiral
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: May 19, 2016
Read "Circles and Landscapes" CD/LP/Track Review Circles and Landscapes
by John Eyles
Published: March 16, 2016
Read "The Expanding Universe" CD/LP/Track Review The Expanding Universe
by Karl Ackermann
Published: July 8, 2016
Read "ReNew" CD/LP/Track Review ReNew
by James Nadal
Published: March 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!