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ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Randy Weston & His African Rhythms Trio: Zep Tepi

Read "Zep Tepi" reviewed by Bill Bennett

Randy Weston returns to the trio format for the first time in over thirty years with Zep Tepi. Poised to enter his eighth decade on the planet, Weston is an elder in every sense of the term. His distinctively percussive attack, yard-wide chords, criss-crossing rhythms and idiosyncratic melodies remain sui generis. Both literally (he's 6'9") and ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Randy Weston's African Rhythms Trio: Zep Tepi

Read "Zep Tepi" reviewed by Joel Roberts

There's no better argument for the notion that jazz keeps you young than Randy Weston. Appearing last month at the Blue Note in support of Zep Tepi, the Brooklyn-born Weston showed that at eighty he remains one of the most vital and creative forces in jazz, as well as one of its most charismatic figures.

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Jerry Gonzalez & The Fort Apache Band: Rumba Buhaina: The Music of Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers

Read "Rumba Buhaina: The Music of Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers" reviewed by Francis Lo Kee

Art Blakey didn't literally write books, but it could be said that he “wrote the book : first, on jazz drumming, incorporating the essence of swing, extroverted drum solos and some genuinely unique beats that have escaped deeper absorption by contemporary drummers; second, on bandleading, constantly scouting and presenting great (often, younger) talent; and third, on ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Pyeng Threadgill: Of The Air

Read "Of The Air" reviewed by Francis Lo Kee

Of the Air, an album of original music that cuts a broad stylistic swath, is focused and honest, traveling through various contexts organically. There are several reasons for the honest coherence of this music. The CD is recorded in analog with a core group of musicians, a working band rather than a collection of heavy-hitters or ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Jerry Gonzalez & The Fort Apache Band: Rumba Buhaina

Read "Rumba Buhaina" reviewed by Jim Santella

The music of Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers serves as a suitable theme for this album by Jerry Gonzalez and his Latin jazz band, since they exhibit the same kind of percussive drive with integrated melody that the hard bop drummer and his quintets shared with us for decades.

It's been almost two ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Steve Hobbs: Spring Cycle

Read "Spring Cycle" reviewed by George Harris

Who says universities create an ivory tower mentality? Educator and vibes master Steve Hobbs has put out a delectably enjoyable CD of accessible, yet thought-provoking music. Employing a front line of Tom Harrell (trumpet, flugelhorn), Dave Valentin (flute), and Bob Malach (tenor), his lighter than air thematic statements serve as a perfect foil to the percussive ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Khan Jamal: Peace Warrior

Read "Peace Warrior" reviewed by Germein Linares

Vibraphonist Khan Jamal leads the charge on the eclectic and vibrant Peace Warrior. The album's content, some of which was originally issued in '82 as Don't Take No!, combines recording sessions from '82 and '89. Released on CD by New York-based Random Chance Records, Peace Warrior places a good amount of its emphasis in introducing and ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Bill O'Connell: Latin Jazz Fantasy

Read "Latin Jazz Fantasy" reviewed by Aaron Rogers

Latin Jazz Fantasy is the second event of its kind by pianist Bill O'Connell on Random Chance Records. O'Connell is no stranger to playing in Afro-Caribbean style; he played with Latin jazz greats like saxophonist Gato Barbieri and percussionist Mongo Santamaria. O'Connell's Latin Jazz Fantasy features ten original compositions by O'Connell that glisten with Latin rhythms ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Bill O: Latin Jazz Fantasy

Read "Latin Jazz Fantasy" reviewed by Jim Santella

With a full session of songs composed by the leader, this contemporary album features strings, percussion, and a large, swinging ensemble that's dedicated to the Latin feeling found in today's popular art form. Featured co-stars include tenor saxophonist Bob Malach and flutist Dave Valentin.

The pianist swings hard. As he steers his companions through ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Bill O'Connell: Latin Jazz Fantasy

Read "Latin Jazz Fantasy" reviewed by John Kelman

Bill O'Connell has been a busy pianist/arranger, mainly in the Latin and Afro-Cuban jazz arenas, for over thirty years, having worked with artists including Dave Valentin, Mongo Santamaria, Jerry Gonzalez and Gato Barbieri. He may not be a household name, but with a large book of songs that have been widely recorded, he deserves to be. ...