When scoring and performing music for The Cosby Show and other TV shows, guitarist Bob Gallo projected a mild musical persona. But with this assertive Wake-Up Call, the antithesis of that notion, the guitarist unleashes his nearly mind-boggling chops.
On this studio session Gallo sports a debonair jazz demeanor, coupled with flashy dynamics and a speed-demon modus operandi that yields impressive results. Whether performing complex bop motifs or soft ballads, the artist excels when reformulating the respective melody line. He swaps vicious fours with trumpeter Alex Sipiagin and pianist Misha Tsiganov on the up-tempo opener and title track. But Gallo's tender side surfaces on the gently stated, samba-shaded "Dedication.
Nonetheless, the players in the quintet effectively intermingle the overall rhythmic quotient, complete with the soloists' sinuously engineered unison lines and torrid soloing spots. One highlight: Tsiganov's trickling notes during "Calculated Risk, where the band incorporates hard bop choruses into a sprightly, loose groove workout. In sum, Gallo's muse combines enviable technical faculties with a lean, mean fighting machine of a band.
I've always loved jazz ...my mother was a classical pianist and my aunt was a blues singer, who was managed by Clarence Williams (Bessie Smith's producer). As a young boy, they introduced me to people like Louis Armstrong, Sarah Vaughan, and Jimmy Smith
I've always loved jazz ...my mother was a classical pianist and my aunt was a blues singer, who was managed by Clarence Williams (Bessie Smith's producer). As a young boy, they introduced me to people like Louis Armstrong, Sarah Vaughan, and Jimmy Smith. We hung out at my Aunt Kate's Soul Food restaurant in Harlem after the matinees at the Apollo where I listened to their stories. I knew I wanted to be a jazz musician from then on. My mother wanted me to play piano, but my Aunt bought me a guitar. I've been playing ever since.
At my mother's early prompting, I first sang Blue Velvet at my Catholic elementary school...and all the nuns came running in and asked me to sing again, so I knew I must have sounded pretty good. I've been singing ever since.
I met Tony Bennett in Miami and he inspired me to return to New York. He was a great mentor.
The best show I ever attended is mpossible to say, I've seen so many great shows. From Tony Bennett to Pat Martino, Return to Forever to Weather Report...I've seen some great performances.
My advice to new listeners is don't let jazz intimidate you, the music has something for every listener and it is our American gift to the world.