All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

3

Bruce Lofgren's Jazz Pirates: Wind and Sand

Jack Bowers By

Sign in to view read count
Batten the hatches and shiver the timbers—guitarist Bruce Lofgren's Los Angeles-based Jazz Pirates are climbing aboard with their fourth album for Night Bird Records and Lofgren's eighth as leader of his own ensemble. While these buccaneers aren't really after gold or silver (although a little of that wouldn't hurt), they do fancy that some of their captain's musical broadsides on Wind and Sand may strike their target and inflame some hearts.

Lofgren charts a steady course, weighing anchor with Bronislau Kaper's tantalizing "Invitation" (shuttling between swing and African rhythms) and traversing the seas on the wings of nine original compositions and Paul McCartney's ballad, "Michelle," played in waltz time with a touch more heat than usual. The voyage encompasses three vocals by personable contralto Karen Mitchell, with music by Lofgren and lyrics by Ed Leimbacher. They are, in order, the exuberant "Bop Talk," sensuous "Find a Place" and groovy "Sheet Music," which closes the album. (The lyric to each is enclosed in the album's booklet.) Lofgren, who arranged everything, also wrote "Café Rio," "Far Far Away," "Wind and Sand," "Magic Shoes," "Days of August" and "Gypsy Moon." While none is a classic, neither is any one of them bereft of geniality and charm. In other words, they keep the ship on an even keel, no matter how stormy the weather.

The waters do get choppy from time to time, as on "Wind and Sand," "Magic Shoes" and "Gypsy Moon," the last one of two numbers on which guest guitarist Carl Verheyen solos (the other is "Invitation"). Speaking of soloists, the Pirates boast several standouts on the foredeck including trumpeter Ron King ("Bop Talk," "Magic Shoes," flugel on "Find a Place"), alto Glen Garrett ("Days of August," "Michelle"), tenor Glen Berger ("Sheet Music," soprano on "Far Far Away") and pianist Charlie Ferguson (keyboard, or what used to be called electric piano, on "Café Rio"). The tender "Far Far Away" is a thematic piece, written for Lofgren's grandfather who was called Far Far (the Swedish name for grandfather). The Pirates' anomalous lineup (three trumpets, four saxophones, two trombones, two French horns and rhythm) works well, while percussionists Bob Leatherbarrow and Brian Kilgore  generate enough heat to keep the ship's engine running smoothly. Craig Fundyga's vibraphone is especially pleasing on the ethereal "Wind and Sand."

Thanks to Lofgren's lusty charts and spirited blowing by all hands, these Pirates orchestrate smooth sailing from cast-off to port of entry, earning Wind and Sand high marks for a serene and agreeable voyage.

Track Listing: Invitation; Bop Talk; Café Rio; Far Far Away; Wind and Sand; Find a Place; Magic Shoes; Days of August; Gypsy Moon; Michelle; Sheet Music.

Personnel: Bruce Lofgren: conductor, composer, arranger, guitar; Jon Lewis: trumpet, flugelhorn; Ron King: trumpet, flugelhorn; Dustin McKinney: trumpet, flugelhorn; Glenn Garrett: alto, soprano sax, flute, piccolo; Phil Feather: alto sax, oboe, flute; Glen Berger: tenor, soprano sax, Bb clarinet, flute; Bob Carr: baritone sax, bass clarinet, flute; Yvonne Suzette Moriarty: French horn; Emily Reppun: French horn; Jacques Voyemant: trombone; Mike Millar: bass trombone; Craig Fundyga: vibraphone; Charlie Ferguson: keyboards; Ken Wild: electric, acoustic bass; Bob Leatherbarrow: drums; Brian Kilgore: hand percussion, congas, bongos, shakers, shekere, iya, okonkolo, timps, triangle, agogo; Karen Mitchell: vocals. Guest guitar soloist – Carl Verheyen (1, 9).

Title: Wind and Sand | Year Released: 2015 | Record Label: Night Bird Music

Tags

Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Read Point Blank CD/LP/Track Review
Point Blank
by Chris May
Published: August 20, 2018
Read Tell Me The Truth CD/LP/Track Review
Tell Me The Truth
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: August 20, 2018
Read No One Is Alone CD/LP/Track Review
No One Is Alone
by Chris Mosey
Published: August 20, 2018
Read The Literature CD/LP/Track Review
The Literature
by Jerome Wilson
Published: August 20, 2018
Read Between the Silence CD/LP/Track Review
Between the Silence
by John Kelman
Published: August 19, 2018
Read Flying CD/LP/Track Review
Flying
by Troy Dostert
Published: August 19, 2018
Read "Heartscape" CD/LP/Track Review Heartscape
by Marithe Van der Aa
Published: October 8, 2017
Read "In the Wake" CD/LP/Track Review In the Wake
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: May 28, 2018
Read "A Gathering Foretold" CD/LP/Track Review A Gathering Foretold
by Geannine Reid
Published: December 12, 2017
Read "The Velvet Rage" CD/LP/Track Review The Velvet Rage
by Roger Farbey
Published: June 28, 2018
Read "Ain't Who I Was" CD/LP/Track Review Ain't Who I Was
by Doug Collette
Published: October 28, 2017
Read "Secret Passages" CD/LP/Track Review Secret Passages
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: December 11, 2017