Nothing particularly earthshaking or groundbreaking here; just a well oiled piano trio going after an engaging set tunes, melody in the forefront.
Pianist Chad Lawson has an ear for fine melodies on this collection that mixes standards, a few rock tunes, and four of his own first rate compositions.
The set opens with "Past Reference," a Lawson original: a slightly sad atmosphere with flashes of right hand brightness that sounds like a tune you've heard before, Lawson playing in front of a gently propulsive rhythm. The original leads into Sting's "Every Little Thing She Does is Magic," with the same insistence in the rhythmZack Page's cushioned, propulsive bass, Alfred Sergel's textured timekeeping.
The thing that keeps coming back to me on this one is how reverent the trio is to the original melodies of the familiar tunes, while adding just a hint of an edge to freshen them. And while Sting's songand the Beatles' "Michelle" and Soundgarden's "Black Hole Sun"give the set a modern appeal, for this ear it's the standards that push things over the top: Arlen and Mercer's "My Shining Hour"beautiful; and a fittingly pensive take on "In the Wee Small Hours of the Morning."
A perfectly paced set of well-chosen covers mixed in with some inventive and appealing originals.
Track Listing: Past Reference, Every Little Thing She Does is Magic, Litttle Person, Michelle, In the Wee Small Hour, Unforeseen, Black Hole Sun, My Shining Hour, Alone Together, So You Said
Personnel: Chad Lawson—piano; Alfred Sergel—drums; Zack Page—bass
I love jazz because it is in my blood. It is the only original American art form. It is sacred. The greatest musicians are jazz artists.
I was first exposed to jazz in 1961 listening to my father's records of Duke Ellington, Billy Strayhorn, Count Basie, Nat King Cole, Ben Webster, Coleman Hawkins, Lester Young.
I met Sonny Stitt, Wayne Shorter, Branford Marsalis, Joey Calderazzo, Michael Brecker, Cannonball Adderley, Walter Booker, Dave Liebman, Joe Lovano, George Benson, Mike
Stern, Stanley Turrentine, Billy Harper, Skip Hadden, Charlie Haden.
The best show I ever attended was Joe Lovano with Soundprints at the Wexner Center in Columbus Ohio in 2014.
The first jazz record I bought was Miles Smiles.