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Content by tag "Jack Bowers"

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Mica Bethea: Stage 'N Studio

Read "Stage 'N Studio" reviewed by Jack Bowers

When listening to the Mica Bethea Big Band's generally admirable two-CD set, Stage 'n Studio, the first thought is, “Why hasn't anyone done this before?" That query is immediately replaced by a second thought: “Perhaps someone has and we simply overlooked it." In either case, Bethea's decision to perform (basically) the same material in a recording ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Keith Karns Big Band: An Eye on the Future

Read "An Eye on the Future" reviewed by Jack Bowers

It's hard to know in advance exactly what to expect from a big-band album whose title is An Eye on the Future. Luckily, the horizon as leader Keith Karns sees it is rhythmically persuasive, harmonically alluring, acknowledges an indispensable bond to the past and swings like crazy. On this album, it's a tomorrow that also sets ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Joshua Rager Nonet: Jondo

Read "Jondo" reviewed by Jack Bowers

It's hard to decide what to make of this. Canadian-based composer / pianist Joshua Rager has assembled a splendid corps of musicians, nine in all (plus trumpeter Andy King on the three-part “Prodigal Son Suite"), to perform seven of the leader's original themes, one by Andre White and another by the Hollywood songwriting team of Al ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

The Dan Banks Quintet: Two in a Box

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On Two in a Box, British pianist Dan Banks' quintet revisits a Golden Age in jazz when hard bop was king and record labels like Prestige and Blue Note delivered the latest sounds to an astute and appreciative audience. Without mimicry, Banks reimagines the indomitable spirit of such masters as Red Garland, Wynton Kelly, Bobby Timmons, ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Dial & Oatts - Rich DeRosa - WDR Big Band: Rediscovered Ellington

Read "Rediscovered Ellington" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Fans of Duke Ellington who think they've heard it all should prepare themselves for a most pleasant surprise: a treasure-trove of “rediscovered" songs composed or co-written by Ellington, several of which had never before been recorded, wonderfully performed by Germany's world-class WDR Big Band conducted by Rich DeRosa and featuring the prodigious talents of guests Garry ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Cassio Vianna: Infância

Read "Infância" reviewed by Jack Bowers

As composer / arranger Cassio Vianna was born and raised in Rio de Janeiro, an argument could be made that there is rhythm in his genes. The notion is underscored on Infancia, Vianna's debut recording as leader of his well-schooled Jazz Orchestra, a bright and thematic excursion on which the seductive rhythms of his native Brazil ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Russell Malone: Time for the Dancers

Read "Time for the Dancers" reviewed by Jack Bowers

The flame lit so brightly many years ago by guitarist Wes Montgomery continues to burn with intensity thanks to gifted torch-bearers like Russell Malone whose third album for HighNote Records, Time for the Dancers, not only mirrors Montgomery's singular musical temperament but ushers it into aesthetic realms that would surely have had Wes nodding his approval. ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

The Andrew Scott Quartet: The Brightest Minute

Read "The Brightest Minute" reviewed by Jack Bowers

To say that guitarist Andrew Scott's new CD, The Brightest Minute, leans backward as much as it does forward isn't a slam, it's a compliment. It's always a pleasure to hear a musician who salutes the prowess of his predecessors--in this case, masters like Billy Bauer, Johnny Smith, Tal Farlow, Barney Kessel, Jim Hall and others--and ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Miles Donahue: The Bug

Read "The Bug" reviewed by Jack Bowers

People who have an aversion to bugs (do you know any?) may hesitate to purchase (or even review) an album whose title epitomizes the very thing they abhor. But even though multi-instrumentalist Miles Donahue's new album does nod to that often-despised creature and even includes a song by that name, there is more to it than ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Paul McCandless: Morning Sun

Read "Morning Sun" reviewed by Jack Bowers

First things first. The full title of this decorous CD is Morning Sun: Adventures with Oboe--Paul McCandless with the Paul Winter Consort: A Retrospective. It covers sixteen recordings made by oboist McCandless spanning a forty-year period (1970-2010), all save three with the Winter Consort. Needless to say, a large number of musicians were involved; their names ...


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