138

Dave Riekenberg: Never Too Late

Jack Bowers By

Sign in to view read count
Dave Riekenberg: Never Too Late
Another well-upholstered album of contemporary straight-ahead Jazz that gives absolutely no cause for complaint but fewer reasons than one might expect to become excited. Its title, Never Too Late, is an appropriate metaphor for tenor Dave Riekenberg's long-overdue debut as leader of his own quartet after years on the road with Woody Herman's orchestra and Blood, Sweat & Tears and many more gigging around New York City and performing as a woodwind specialist on Broadway. Riekenberg, known as "Bopper," is a resourceful and articulate stylist with a pleasing sound who knows how to swing at any tempo. He is accompanied on this studio date by three of New York's most reputable sidemen, pianist Xavier Davis, bassist Doug Weiss and drummer Dennis Mackrel. Davis, a consistently engaging soloist, keeps Riekenberg on his improvisational toes while Weiss and Mackrel see to it that the group's rhythmic momentum never wavers. Everyone is a model of harmonious self-assurance, and much of the album rides smoothly along on a good-natured but otherwise unexceptional cushion of purposeful competence. Its strong points, as is usually the case, are the standards — "By Myself," "For All We Know" and "Stella by Starlight," on the last of which Riekenberg discards the tenor to show his proficiency on flute. Riekenberg wrote "Never Too Late" and "Oops," neither of which poses a threat to those tunes already mentioned. Completing the program are Joe Henderson's breezy samba, "Serenity," Tom Guarna's wistful "Reunion," Billy Eckstine's lyrical "I Want to Talk About You" and a medium-tempo cooker with enticing melody by Sonny Rollins, "Why Don't I," on which Riekenberg acknowledges his debt to Sonny, as he does Henderson on "Serenity." Never Too Late is a largely impressive first outing for Riekenberg but one's praise must be tempered by the thought that neither he nor his companions is able to produce the sort of prolonged creative spark that might prompt one to append the prefix "extra" to "ordinary."

Contact: NY Jam Records, 567 10th St., Brooklyn, NY 11215 (phone 718?788?8032; fax 718?499?4080; e-mail [email protected]; web site, www.nyjam.com).

Personnel

Dave Riekenberg: woodwinds.

Album information

Title: Never Too Late | Year Released: 2002 | Record Label: NY Jam

Post a comment about this album

Tags

Shop Amazon

More

Read All Figured Out
All Figured Out
Derek Brown and The Holland Concert Jazz Orchestra
Read Supersense
Supersense
Steph Richards
Read Alex Moxon Quartet
Alex Moxon Quartet
Alex Moxon Quartet
Read I Went This Way
I Went This Way
Rachel Musson
Read HH
HH
Lionel Loueke
Read Dominos
Dominos
Chuck Anderson

All About Jazz needs your support

Donate
All About Jazz & Jazz Near You were built to promote jazz music: both recorded and live events. We rely primarily on venues, festivals and musicians to promote their events through our platform. With club closures, shelter in place and an uncertain future, we've pivoted our platform to collect, promote and broadcast livestream concerts to support our jazz musician friends. This is a significant but neccesary effort that will help musicians now, and in the future. You can help offset the cost of this essential undertaking by making a donation today. In return, we'll deliver an ad-free experience (which includes hiding the bottom right video ad). Thank you.

Get more of a good thing

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories and includes your local jazz events calendar.