All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. Pay $20 and we'll hide those six pesky Google ads that appear on every page, plus this box and the slideout box on the right for a full year! You'll also fund website expansion.
With such notable exceptions as Julius Watkins, Tom Varner and Willie Ruff, the French Horn has not made a large splash as a solo jazz instrument. Often found in orchestras, such as Claude Thornhill's, or in small groups, it adds a distinctive mellow, melodic harmonic substance to the music. Contemporary and classic horn player, Richard Todd, has taken the instrument into a chamber setting for his initial foray into the world of jazz recording, with a smattering of interesting results to say the least. He is joined in this undertaking by a rotating cast of eminent jazz artists, including bassist John Clayton, Billy Childs on piano, Steve Huffsteter on trumpet and Ralph Penland on drums. Also present are a variety of other instruments including the vibes, tuba, harp and accordion. Given the chamber setting, the trick is to make each track sufficiently different to retain the interest of the listener. Even in the world of classical music, chamber music can only take an audience so far before there is a yen for high spirited symphonic stuff. I'm afraid that is what happens here. There are some incredibly beautiful, mellifluous moments on this disk, such as a deeply felt, haunting version of "Emily". Billy Childs helps by bringing his post bop orientation to such cuts as "Quiet Time" and a coy sassiness to "Central Avenue Strut" where Todd's horn takes on the feel of a trombone. Matters move closer to the classical end of the spectrum when David Raksin appears to conduct a small group in his "A Song After Sundown". One tour de force tracks is a Todd/Clayton duet on "`Round Midnight". While all the music, including the Todd originals, has merit, it does get a bit solemn and heavy after a while. Todd tries hard to advance the French Horn as a legitimate jazz solo instrument. But while there are some very good moments on this album, the limitations of the instrument make his task very imposing indeed.
Track Listing: Nightwalk; Discovery; A Song After Sundown; Central Avenue Strut; Quiet Time; Emily; Days of Wine and Roses; Race; `Round Midnight; In the Wee Small Hours of the Morning
Personnel: Richard Todd - French Horn; Billy Childs - Piano; David Carpenter, Chuck Domanico, John Clayton - Bass; Steve Huffsteter - Trumpet; Dan Higgins - Sax; Ralph Penland - Drums; Alan Estes - Vibes/Quiro; Lenny Castro - Congas; Michael Lang, Alan Pasqua - Piano; Tim May - Guitar; Bob Zimmitti - Vibes; Tommy Johnson - Tuba; David Raksin - Conductor; Frank Marocco - Accordion; Marcia Dickstein - Harp
I love jazz because with it I found my true voice. I have always sung since I was a very small child in school and church. And there have been many genre that I have enjoyed including spiritual, folk, country, latin, soca and pop
I love jazz because with it I found my true voice. I have always sung since I was a very small child in school and church. And there have been many genre that I have enjoyed including spiritual, folk, country, latin, soca and pop. But nothing has touched my artistic sensiblities like JAZZ! Two years ago I moved to Sarasota, FL where I renewed my focus on my singing career and I was so impressed with the quality, quantity and generousity of talented jazz musicains in the Suncoast area. I soon partnered with piano legend Billy Marcus and his trio with Don Mopsick and Stephen Bucholtz. What a blast working with these guys and having them back me up on my first jaz album, Here's To You... which was just released on October 1st. I can't wait to see where the coming year brings me! Check out syniacarrolljazz.com