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10
Album Review

Dan Pugach Big Band: Bianca

Read "Bianca" reviewed by Jack Bowers


Dan Pugach is an Israeli-born, New York-based drummer who doubles (quite well) as composer and arranger on Bianca, his second recording for Outside In Music. Pugach anchors a splendid big band comprised of some of the New York area's finest musicians on an album whose subtitle is “Music for Paws and Persistence." The “paws" were those of the Pugach family's rescue pit-bull, Bianca, who passed away in 2019 and left a gaping hole in their lives, as ...

10
Album Review

Dial and DeRosa: Keep Swingin'

Read "Keep Swingin'" reviewed by Jack Bowers


Keep Swingin', a splendid new album from pianist Garry Dial and drummer Rich DeRosa, features “the music of Charlie Banacos." Charlie who? you may ask. And the answer is, there are jazz educators, and then there was Charlie Banacos, whose talent and ingenuity in the classroom influenced and inspired countless jazz musicians for more than fifty years. During that time, he designed more than a hundred courses of study and wrote half a dozen books on composition and improvisation.

28
Album Review

Joe McCarthy's New York Afro Bop Alliance Big Band: The Pan American Nutcracker Suite

Read "The Pan American Nutcracker Suite" reviewed by Jack Bowers


Yes, Peter Tchaikovsky's timeless Nutcracker Suite is basically holiday music; and, yes, the 2022 holiday season is squarely in everyone's rear-view mirror. Even so, there is always room for a fresh approach to the annual festive staple, which is what drummer Joe McCarthy's New York Afro Bop Alliance Big Band brings to The Pan American Nutcracker Suite. The Nutcracker has been rhythmically amended before, but never quite like this, as McCarthy and the band use the strong ...

9
Album Review

Joe McCarthy's Afro Bop Alliance Big Band: The Pan American Nutcracker Suite

Read "The Pan American Nutcracker Suite" reviewed by Richard J Salvucci


"The Nutcracker" is a holiday staple and, as many musical and dance companies around the United States and Europe will tell you, thank Heaven for it. The musicians and performers may eventually lose their sanity from repeat performances, but the ballet is a money-maker as sure as holiday sales generate commercial profits for retailers. Besides, someone is inevitably hearing it for the first time, and children—even some adults—seem to enjoy it. This year, the season starts early with ...

9
Album Review

Steven Feifke Big Band: Kinetic

Read "Kinetic" reviewed by Jack Bowers


Jazz connoisseurs who lean toward big bands that swing as earnestly and often as the renowned architects of the epic big-band era should find plenty to cheer about on Kinetic, the debut recording by New York-based pianist, composer and arranger Steven Feifke's audacious and fiery ensemble. This is a band that fires on all cylinders—but it couldn't even leave the garage unless Feifke supplied the fuel. With one exception (noted below), Feifke's intense and high-powered charts neatly pave the way, ...

1
Album Review

Steven Feifke Big Band: Kinetic

Read "Kinetic" reviewed by Angelo Leonardi


Assimilare la tradizione per poi creare cose originali. È questo il percorso che hanno seguito e continuano a seguire i musicisti jazz, in forme e approfondimenti diversi. A 30 anni esatti il pianista Steven Feifke è ancora al primo passo ma in questo scintillante debutto orchestrale dimostra di avere tutte le carte in regola per sviluppare percorsi originali. Kinetic è infatti un esempio del miglior modern mainstream orchestrale, elaborato sulle lezioni di Thad Jones e Mel Lewis, ...

5
Album Review

Bill Warfield and the Hell's Kitchen Funk Orchestra: Smile

Read "Smile" reviewed by Jack Bowers


Having no idea what to expect from an ensemble labeled the Hell's Kitchen Funk Orchestra, the game plan must be to advance with caution, as any orchestra with trumpeter Bill Warfield at the helm can't be all bad. After listening, it becomes clear that the game plan was sound and the premise accurate: Smile, the HKFO's second recording, isn't all bad. The question is: did Warfield and the orchestra have its own game plan? If snatching every ingredient within reach ...

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Music

Recordings: As Leader | As Sideperson

Keep Swingin'

Outside in Music
2024

buy

Bianca

Outside in Music
2024

buy

The Pan American...

Angel Face Records
2022

buy

Kinetic

Outside in Music
2021

buy

Smile

Planet Arts Records
2020

buy

First Things First

Outside in Music
2018

buy

Smile

From: Smile
By Andrew Gould

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