Dave Liebman's Expansions: Selflessness - The Music of John ColtraneBy
The repertoire runs the gamut of Coltrane's output. "Lazy Bird" comes from the Blue Train (Blue Note, 1957) session, while "My Favorite Things," "Olé" and "Mr. Day" are all from the late 1950s/early 1960s Atlantic years. Finally, the later Impulse! work is also represented, with "Dear Lord," "Compassion" and the title track drawn from some of Coltrane's most searching, spiritually focused music. Liebman is in top form throughout, from the charging opener, "Mr. Day" on which his biting solo pulses with energy, to "Dear Lord," the gorgeous closer, when bassist Tony Marino's evocative arco solo leads Liebman to some of his most reflective moments on the record.
Liebman's associates are consistently superb, as drummer Alex Ritz transitions smoothly from the hard swinging "Lazy Bird" to skilled use of the frame drum on the expansively atmospheric "Olé." Pianist/keyboardist Bobby Avey is as effective on the solo rubato piano opening of "My Favorite Things" as he is working the synths on the otherworldly "Compassion." And Matt Vashlishan serves as the perfect second horn for Liebman: he's outstanding on alto sax on "My Favorite Things" but just as compelling in a more meditative vein when playing flute on "Dear Lord" and "Peace on Earth."
Most importantly, Liebman's arrangements manage the trick of capturing Coltrane's spirit while avoiding sounding beholden to the pieces' original formulations. There's a lot to discover here, and Liebman has successfully revealed yet more layers to the vital Coltrane legacy.
Mr. Day; Compassion; My Favorite Things; Olé; Lazy Bird; Peace on Earth; One Up One Down; Selflessness; Dear Lord.
Dave Liebman: saxophone, soprano; Matt Vashlishan: saxophone, alto; Bobby Avey: piano; Tony Marino: bass; Alex Ritz: drums.
Dave Liebman: wooden flute (4); Matt Vashlishan: flute (6, 9), clarinet (4), wind synth (2); Bobby Avey: synthesizers (4, 2, 8, 9); Alex Ritz: frame drum (4).
Title: Selflessness - The Music of John Coltrane | Year Released: 2021 | Record Label: Dot Time Records
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About Dave Liebman
Instrument: Saxophone, sopranoArticle Coverage | Calendar | Albums | Photos | Similar Artists