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Steve Turre: Colors for the Masters

Read "Colors for the Masters" reviewed by C. Andrew Hovan

When it comes to the contemporary trombone artists, there are two schools of exploration. Steve Turre is an advocate of the more melodic school of which elder champions include Curtis Fuller and J.J. Johnson. The more ebullient and bop-inflected side of things has its greatest proponent in Conrad Herwig. No one method should be considered the ...

Jim Rotondi: Dark Blue

Read "Dark Blue" reviewed by C. Andrew Hovan

Back in 1997 when Introducing Jim Rotondi announced that a major new trumpeter star was on the ascent, few could have predicted how important and prolific Rotondi would become to the mainstream landscape. A foremost stylist in the lineage of Freddie Hubbard and Wood Shaw, Rotondi quickly proved he had absorbed the legacy, only to jettison ...

Renee Rosnes: Written in the Rocks

Read "Written in the Rocks" reviewed by C. Andrew Hovan

Always a major talent who has transcended the hokum that usually accompanies the precept of women jazz musicians, pianist Renee Rosnes offers a mature and individualistic touch that has been recorded on far too few occasions over the years. In fact, prior to this fabulous session, Rosnes' last U.S. release was a 2010 duo set with ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Heads of State: Search for Peace

Read "Search for Peace" reviewed by Maurizio Zerbo

Un'ennesima proposta accattivante ci viene dalla label indipendente Smoke Records, grazie a questo splendido gruppo di “all stars." L'interplay è perfetto, forte di una più che quarantennale collaborazione che a vario titolo accomuna i quattro musicisti. Tutti ultrassantenni, Gary Bartz e compagni affrontano questa cavalcata tra gli standard con disinvolta naturalezza, che consente di infondere nell'ascoltatore ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Eddie Henderson: Collective Portrait

Read "Collective Portrait" reviewed by Maurizio Zerbo

Empatia, raffinato gusto armonico, souplesse, lirismo. Sono i fili principali di un percorso musicale davvero avvincente, che si impone come uno dei progetti più convincenti di contemporaneo modern mainstream. Ne è protagonista un quintetto di livello assoluto, dove giganteggia il fraseggio fluido ed elegante del leader. IL suo nuovo CD costituisce l'occasione giusta per tessere le ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Steve Turre: Spiritman

Read "Spiritman" reviewed by Luca Muchetti

Torna Steve Turre, il “suonatore di conchiglie," o -se preferite -il sideman di giganti come Ray Charles e Carlos Santana. Spiritman rappresenta un vero e proprio back to the roots, verso quella essenzialità swing che il trombonista sembrava aver messo da parte da tempo in favore di percorsi più concettuali e, in parte, segnati anche dall'utilizzo ...

Eddie Henderson: Collective Portrait

Read "Collective Portrait" reviewed by C. Andrew Hovan

One of the nice surprises of 2014 was the formation of the Smoke Sessions label. Their first several issues were actual performances recorded at the club. However, they seemed to have focused their efforts lately on live studio sessions cut at the wonderful Sear Sound studio in New York. The overall sound of these releases continues ...

Steve Turre: Spiritman

Read "Spiritman" reviewed by C. Andrew Hovan

There seems to be two schools among the current generation of jazz trombonists. On the one hand you have those who favor the lush and melodic voices of Frank Rosolino, Lawrence Brown, Carl Fontana, and those of a similar ilk. By contrast are the bop inflected approaches of J.J. Johnson and Curtis Fuller. Turre has gone ...

Jimmy Cobb: The Original Mob

Read "The Original Mob" reviewed by C. Andrew Hovan

As the Smoke Sessions list of titles continues to grow, so too do we get to check out some of the country's greatest drummer. The much in-demand Joe Farnsworth has been featured on the label's releases by Harold Mabern and David Hazeltine. Furthermore, one of the most recent titles is a headlining date for the legendary ...

Louis Hayes: Return of the Jazz Communicators

Read "Return of the Jazz Communicators" reviewed by C. Andrew Hovan

Much like what has happened with Smalls Records, the cottage industry that Smoke jazz club started when they debuted their own record label last fall has continued to grow into a viable commodity. So too, there is common ground to the look and feel of each release, even as the color scheme and the music itself ...