Support All About Jazz

All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. Pay $20 and we'll hide those six pesky Google ads that appear on every page, plus this box and the slideout box on the right for a full year! You'll also fund website expansion.


I want to help
151

Michael Weiss: Soul Journey

Dan McClenaghan By

Sign in to view read count
Michael Weiss: Soul Journey Pianist Michael Weiss took home the Grand Prize in the 2000 BMI/Thelonious Monk Institute's Composition Competition for his song "El Camino," which is included on Soul Journey. This Latin-flavored mainstream beauty features three-horn harmonies and tasty soloing all around. "El Camino" is a sure winner, but the CD is full of other fine Weiss-composed songs: the upbeat opener, "Optimism"; the brooding title tune; and the brassy "Second Thoughts."

The septet takes a very mainstream approach—a three horn front line (trombone/trumpet/alto sax) and a standard jazz rhythm section, plus an additional percussionist. An Art Blakey approach, though with a smoother sound, harmony more in the forefront of the proceedings, and glowing unison blowing. Ryan Kisor stands out on trumpet solos with his buttery smooth tone.

It's the songs, though, that star on Soul Journey. And though Weiss doesn't call attention to himself as an instrumentalist, additional listens reveal a richness to his own solos, a smooth and understated eloquence. He tells stories when it's his turn: structured mini-songs—beginning, middle, end—slipped into the middle of the compositions. Another listen, and Steve Wilson's trombone solo on "La Ventana" sparkles. Then there's the very "jazzy" workout "The Cheshire Cat", where trumpeter Kisor sings a cool song before altoist Steve Wilson brings things back to a simmer.

A standout effort by Michael Weiss and crew.

Visit Sintra Records at www.sintrarecords.com and Michael Weiss at www.michaelweiss.info .


Track Listing: Optimism, El Camino, Soul Journey, Orient Express, Atlantis, The Prophecy, The Cheshire Cat, La Ventana, Second Thoughts

Personnel: Michael Weiss, piano, Fender Rhodes; Steve Wilson, alto sax; Ryan Kisor, trumpet, flugelhorn; Steve Davis, trombone; Paul Gill, bass; Joe Farnsworth, drums; Danile Sadownick, percussion

Year Released: 2003 | Record Label: Sintra Records | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop

Interviews
CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Soul Journey
Soul Journey
Sintra Records
2003
buy
Milestones
Milestones
SteepleChase Records
1999
buy
Power Station
Power Station
DIW
1997
buy
Presenting Michael Weiss
Presenting Michael...
Criss Cross
1987
buy

More Articles

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.