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The great organ trios of the '60s were sustained by people who loved fun, carefree, and relative music. Whether in smoky clubs, or backwoods watering holes, the music was for, and about the people. The visceral art of the jazz organ trio is exactly what Will Sellenraad & Root Down's Star Hustler delivers. To the point: Music that is simply funky, entertaining, and engaging. The backwoods of guitarist Sellenraad are the concrete streets of New York, where he has gigged with a variety of area musicians and notables from Brian Blade to Victor Lewis. His own group Root Down exploits the talents of Brian Charette on organ and Darren Beckett on drums.
A heavy groove flavor here brings to mind past great trios, but it's updated with a modern approach. This music is not about the quick burn, but more so a tempered heat that cooks slow. Sellenraad's skillful fingers provide sizzling solos, but also a nice rhythm work on the groovacious cut "Leprechaun." His clean sound, with mature, and thoughtful chops enliven the great Lonnie Smith funk jam 'Play it Back.' Organist Charette does a fine job on the B3, dishing out the goods whether soloing or comping. His Hammond purrs, speaks, or screams, to fit the mood. Drummer Darren Beckett shows impressive cymbal work on the smooth number 'Major Mishap.' With a nice mix of originals as well as covers, the mix is not monotonous. The cr'me of the grits might just be the stellar Wayne Shorter composition 'Armageddon,' which offers solid evidence that the modern jazz organ trio still lies in capable hands.
Track Listing: 1. Go Get It 2. Leprechaun 3. Star Hustler 4. 197 Henry
5. Bag of Jewels 6. Play it Back 7. Live Wire
8. Major Mishap 9. Frightened People 10. Armageddon
11. Go Get It
Personnel: Will Sellenraad - guitar; Brian Charette - Hammond B3 organ;
Darren Beckett - drums
Year Released: 2003
| Record Label: Tintop Records
| Style: Funk/Groove
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.