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On this recent release, ”Body and Soul” is performed as a duo. Mundell Lowe’s fluid guitar and Hendrik Meurkens’ sensitive harmonica bring this stirring standard into focus, reminding us that classic songs deserve our utmost respect. Most of the album places the quintet in a mainstream format that represents the last 50 years of jazz as viewed from afar. Long a champion of straight-ahead bebop, Hendrik Meurkens drives straight ahead with vibraphone for six tracks and harmonica for three. Lowe’s “A Lad Named Charlie” offers the listener a solid taste of foot-tappin’, head bobbin’, straight-ahead jazz. With a light Latin rhythm behind the two leaders, guitar and vibraphone improvise over chord changes while infusing fresh ideas.
“Opus 1,” along with vibraphone and piano trio, serves as a reminder of the veteran guitarist’s storied career that stretches from Abbie Brunies, Jan Savitt, Ray McKinley, Benny Goodman, Fats Navarro, and Red Norvo to the Sauter/Finegan Orchestra. Lowe performs with clear articulation and a swing that belies his experience. He and Meurkens, while coming from different generations, appear to be “reading from the same sheet of music.” It’s just one more reminder that straight-ahead jazz remains timeless for all generations.
Track Listing: Windy Wendy; Mundell
Personnel: Mundell Lowe- guitar; Hendrik Meurkens- vibraphone, harmonica; Larry Porter- piano; Pat O
I was first exposed to jazz when I was studying at the University of Puerto Rico. Nearby, I found a little record shop where the music coming from the store (Taller de Jazz Don Pedro) made me stop. I walked down the short stairs and towards the music and learned that the music playing was Clifford Brown and Max Roach
I was first exposed to jazz when I was studying at the University of Puerto Rico. Nearby, I found a little record shop where the music coming from the store (Taller de Jazz Don Pedro) made me stop. I walked down the short stairs and towards the music and learned that the music playing was Clifford Brown and Max Roach. I fell in love with it. I wondered around until the owner (Pedro Soto) asked if I needed help. He then introduced me to John Coltrane, Miles Davis, Gerry Mulligan and the rest is history. I walked out of the store with my first jazz recording: Clifford Brown and Max Roach at Basin Street.