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MUSICIAN Born:

Neal Miner

Neal Miner was introduced to the world of jazz by his first teacher – his father Bill Miner, a respected jazz record collector and discographer. Bill's love of jazz kindled a passion in his son from an early age. Bill shared the music of his vast record collection, took Neal to clubs and concerts, and ensured he received the best musical instruction. Born and raised in Manhattan, Neal received his high school diploma from the Interlochen Arts Academy, and attended the Manhattan School of Music. Most notable of his private teachers were classical bassist, Orin O’Brien of the New York Philharmonic, and jazz bassist, John Webber. Since the age of 19, Neal has been a solid fixture on the New York City jazz scene and is a favored bassist to a host of musicians, both rising jazz stars (Larry Goldings, Harry Allen, Russell Malone, Peter Bernstein, David Hazeltine, Dena DeRose, Ann Hampton Callaway, Loston Harris), and jazz legends (James Moody, Frank Wess, David Allyn, Eddie Locke, Etta Jones, Bob Dorough, Warren Vaché)

You're It!

Label: Cellar Live
Released: 2020
Track listing: You're It; These Foolish Things; Blondie's Waltz; What A Difference A Day Makes; I'll Let You Know; For Heavens Sake; Afternoon In Paris; You've Changed; Fried Pies.

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Mike Melito/Dino Losito Quartet: You're It!

Read "You're It!" reviewed by Jack Bowers

The album cover says “Mike Melito / Dino Losito Quartet." What it does not say is that drummer Melito and pianist Losito have at their beck-and-call an awesome secret weapon, Philadelphia-based tenor saxophonist Larry McKenna, a phenom from the Lester Young school of elegant swinging whose voice on the horn is as debonair and persuasive as ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

The Mike Melito / Dino Losito Quartet: You're It!

Read "You're It!" reviewed by David A. Orthmann

Moderation is a virtue which pervades You're It!, a date co-led by drummer Mike Melito and pianist Dino Losito. It is a pleasure--and a relief—to hear a bop-influenced recording in which jazzmen (three in their middle years and one octogenarian) transcend influences and forge their own standards of performance. The record is impressive in part because ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

The Mike Melito/Dino Losito Quartet: You're It!

Read "You're It!" reviewed by Pierre Giroux

The bold-face names on this release are drummer Mike Melito and pianist Dino Losito. However, the name of the performer treasure is buried in quasi-mice type on the bottom of the front cover, and that is tenor saxophonist Larry McKenna. He is the difference maker. The two principals are from upstate New York and ...

ARTICLE: LIVE REVIEW

Joe Magnarelli at Smalls Jazz Club

Read "Joe Magnarelli at Smalls Jazz Club" reviewed by David A. Orthmann

Joe Magnarelli Quintet Smalls Jazz Club New York, NY September 1, 2020 One hundred days may not sound like a particularly long time in the annals of jazz or, for that matter, any human endeavor. Nevertheless, in the midst of a seemingly endless pandemic that has upended every aspect of ...

ARTICLE: IN PICTURES

Jane Monheit at The American Theatre

Read "Jane Monheit at The American Theatre" reviewed by Mark Robbins

Vocalist Jane Monheit surprised both the audience and the management at The American Theatre in Hampton, Virginia with her first holiday show of the season on November 30. Though her interpretations of the Great American Songbook and torch songs were missed, Monheit and her trio— pianist Michael Kanan, bassist Neal Miner, and drummer Joe Strasser—still moved ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Charles Ruggiero & Hilary Gardner: Play The Bird And The Bee

Read "Play The Bird And The Bee" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

If you've encountered drummer Charles Ruggiero's debut, Boom Bang, Boom Bang! (Rondette Jazz, 2014), you might've seen this coming. There, in the penultimate spot on the playlist, is a cover of The Bird and the Bee's “I'm A Broken Heart" featuring vocalist Hilary Gardner. Something of an outlier on the album, it hinted at a great ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Doron Tirosh: Simply Because It's Winter

Read "Simply Because It's Winter" reviewed by David A. Orthmann

Drummer/composer Doron Tirosh's Simply Because It's Winter brings to mind the adage “good things come in small packages." The six tracks comprise a coherent piece of work in twenty-five minutes of running time. Along with pianist Michael Kanan and bassist Neal Miner, Tirosh achieves a kind of courtly, non-doctrinaire bebop essence. It's jazz that doesn't need ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Sam Taylor: Along The Way

Read "Along The Way" reviewed by Jack Bowers

On almost half of the nine tracks on Along the Way, tenor saxophonist Sam Taylor's close-knit quartet is actually a quintet thanks to the emphatic presence of the renowned Philadelphia-based tenor, Larry McKenna. Taylor's impressive visitor, two months shy of his eightieth birthday when the album was recorded in May 2017, keeps on playing with the ...


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