by Karl Ackermann
Bassist and composer Peter Paulsen is not reticent in his willingness to quote the bible. He specifically cites Matthew 13: 31-32 in stating an approach to creating music rooted in observation and execution through improvisation, communication and impulsiveness. He references a line regarding the mustard seed, saying it is..."the least of all the seeds; but when it is grown it is greater than the herbs and becomes a tree...." In that vein, we have A Few Thoughts, Paulsen's trio outing ...read more
by John Kelman
Building on the success of Tri-Cycle (Wahbo, 2005), Peter Paulsen expands from piano trio to multi-horn sextet. It's more ambitious, not just for the larger palette from which the bassist draws, but because, unlike Tri-Cycle's mix of originals and craftily arranged material by others, Change of Scenery consists entirely of Paulsen originals, with the exception of an innovative arrangement of Wayne Shorter's Nefertiti" and the collectively composed/improvised Random Width."
Drummer Joe Mullen is back and, while he didn't play on ...read more
by John Kelman
One of last year's most pleasant surprises was Philadelphia-based pianist Jeff Baumeister's debut, Useful Music. Multifaceted, intelligent writing and strong group chemistry made it all the more surprising that Baumeister's quartet--which has clearly been doing its share of woodshedding--came seemingly out of nowhere. The days where an artist emerges as a leader following mentorship with established players--as was the case with Miles Davis and Art Blakey--seem to be gone, and the relatively unannounced appearance of young performers is becoming more ...read more
by Tony Rogers
It’s all very well to speak in abstractions about the state of the local jazz scene, but the proof, as they say, is in the playing. With talents like Ben Schachter, Tom Lawton and Bootsie Barnes keeping plenty busy in area clubs and recording studios, it’s clear that Philly and its extended environs have one of the most vibrant scenes around.
So it’s not only a pleasure but a vindication to find a recording by yet another stellar ...read more