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Mo Morgen’s bio states that his real name is Mike Morgenstern, he performed at New York’s Jazzmania Loft for many years and more recently led the house band at Miami’s MoJazz Café. His occasional sideman gigs have featured his capable tenor playing but on Singin' Saxy he has decided to showcase his vocal talents as well. Big mistake! While Morgen has managed to enlist some serious accompaniment Brian Murphy (piano/B-3 organ), Dennis Marks (bass) and John Yarling (drums) – his zero-octave vocal range dooms this project. Actually, the only time this quartet ever rises above cheesy, Holiday Inn-lounge-act calibre, is when Morgen puts down the mike and plays his sax. Otherwise, his renditions of such well-known jazz standards as In a Sentimental Mood, Ghost of a Chance and I Didn’t Know What Time It Was are truly unremarkable. His attempt at scat on I Thought About You will leave you laughing out loud and would surley have dear Ella spinning in her grave! ##
Personnel: Mo Morgen (vocals/sax),Brian Murphy (piano/B-3 organ), Dennis Marks (bass) and John Yarling (drums)
I love jazz because anything is possible; it has few rules and the best jazz breaks those ones. I prefer free improv because it doesn't really have any rules at all.
I was first exposed to jazz in my teens (in the late sixties).
The first jazz record I bought was Filles de Kilimanjaro by Miles Davis, shortly followed by Extrapolation by John McLaughlin.
My advice to new listeners is to listen as widely as possible and not to make snap judgments--stick with it.