119

On Fire; Estate

Jim Santella By

Sign in to view read count








Mike LeDonne
On Fire
Savant
2006


Grant Stewart
Estate
Video Arts Music
2006




Mike LeDonne has been leading his own quartet at Smoke every Tuesday night for the past six years. On Hammond organ, he swings hard and fires up the audience on this live recording along with regulars Eric Alexander (tenor), Peter Bernstein (guitar) and Joe Farnsworth (drums). Their cohesive approach lights fires of the imagination, as the organ combo steps out with familiar songs and original pieces that ring soulfully through the room with a casual air. LeDonne has maintained a fresh outlook that marries the straight ahead traditions set down by folks like Milt Jackson and Benny Golson with the soulful funk of Charles Earland and Dr. Lonnie Smith.

It all comes together here, as his quartet turns up the heat unmercifully. Nat Adderley's "In the Bag , for example, reaches out with open arms and puts a grind into its motion, as LeDonne supplies a soft-edged bass line and wows the audience with his crisp right-hand attacks. His balanced program proves soulful, swinging and spirited. It's just what we need on Tuesday nights, as well as every other night.

Tenor saxophonist Grant Stewart, who has enjoyed a steady Sunday night gig at Smalls with the Planet Jazz ensemble, brings a straight ahead quintet into the studio for this program of standards and originals. With him on this swinging session are guitarist Joe Cohn, pianist Ehud Asherie, bassist Joel Forbes and drummer Phil Stewart. Tenor saxophonist Eric Alexander sits in for "Systems and "3 for Carson , giving the ensemble a twin tenor front line that sizzles comfortably with a boy-next-door charm. Stewart makes you feel right at home. His big tenor recalls the heyday of Kansas City jazz and New York's timeless counterpart. Piano and guitar take extended solos to complement this tenor titan as he drives the unit with confidence. The album's title track lets Stewart demonstrate his love for a ballad, as he caresses the tune with a full tone and deep feeling. Meaning 'summer' in Italian, "Estate provides an opportunity for the saxophonist to express emotions openly through his sincere interpretation, with the band supplying a light bossa nova foundation.

The high point of the album, however, occurs on Hank Mobley's "Soul Station , which Stewart swings with a mighty thrill. He and Cohn drive this one higher and higher, complete with musical quotes and extended solo work delivered with great feeling.


Tracks and Personnel

On Fire

Tracks: Could It Be I'm Falling in Love; Spinky; Idle Moments; At Long Last Love; Prayer for Mary; Bones; In the Bag.

Personnel: Mike LeDonne: Hammond B-3 organ; Eric Alexander: tenor saxophone; Peter Bernstein: guitar; Joe Farnsworth: drums.

Estate

Tracks: Systems; Soul Station; Rain Check; Estate; Carving the Rock; 3 for Carson; Jacqueline; Cool Struttin'; Felicidade.

Personnel: Grant Stewart: tenor saxophone; Joe Cohn: guitar; Ehud Asherie: piano; Joel Forbes: bass; Phil Stewart: drums; Eric Alexander: tenor saxophone.


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Green Mountain Jazz Multiple Reviews Green Mountain Jazz
by Doug Collette
Published: July 24, 2017
Read Guitars on Three Continents Multiple Reviews Guitars on Three Continents
by Geno Thackara
Published: July 16, 2017
Read Queen Esther: Sings Jazz & Black Americana Multiple Reviews Queen Esther: Sings Jazz & Black Americana
by James Nadal
Published: July 12, 2017
Read Blues Deluxe 2 Multiple Reviews Blues Deluxe 2
by Doug Collette
Published: June 25, 2017
Read Two Sackville Gems: Abdullah Ibraihim's "Ancient Africa" and Oliver Lake and Joseph Bowie's "Live at A Space 1976" Multiple Reviews Two Sackville Gems: Abdullah Ibraihim's "Ancient...
by Hrayr Attarian
Published: June 2, 2017
Read "Steel Guitar, Snow and Sunny Beaches: Five New Albums on Losen Records" Multiple Reviews Steel Guitar, Snow and Sunny Beaches: Five New Albums on...
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: September 7, 2016
Read "Allison Miller & Honey Ear Trio: Lean; Swivel" Multiple Reviews Allison Miller & Honey Ear Trio: Lean; Swivel
by Doug Collette
Published: November 4, 2016
Read "Pi Recordings 2016 Releases" Multiple Reviews Pi Recordings 2016 Releases
by Hrayr Attarian
Published: December 24, 2016
Read "In Jazz We Trust: On The Politically Inspired Work Of Delfeayo Marsalis and Ted Nash" Multiple Reviews In Jazz We Trust: On The Politically Inspired Work Of...
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: October 2, 2016
Read "NendoDango Records: Reinventing Tradition" Multiple Reviews NendoDango Records: Reinventing Tradition
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: December 6, 2016

Support All About Jazz: MAKE A PURCHASE  

Support our sponsor

Upgrade Today!

Musician? Boost your visibility at All About Jazz and drive traffic to your website with our Premium Profile service.

Donate!