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Joey DeFrancesco: Wonderful! Wonderful!

C. Michael Bailey By

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Track review of "Wagon Wheels"

Joey DeFrancesco: Wonderful! Wonderful! B-3 specialist Joey DeFrancesco has enjoyed a long and successful Career; so long, that Wonderful! Wonderful! is DeFrancesco's tenth HighNote release. With Tony Monaco his only real "traditional" jazz organ peer, DeFrancesco pretty well has the market cornered for greasy chitlin' circuit funk jazz cum Italian-American savoir faire. Joined by legends, guitarist Larry Coryell and drummer Jimmy Cobb, DeFrancesco assembles a more than competent organ guitar trio, where the three's empathic understanding makes for a satisfying recital of original and standard material.

DeFrancesco resurrects DeRose and Hill's "Wagon Wheels," from the 1934 Broadway musical, Ziegfeld Follies. Tenor saxophonist Sonny Rollins illustrated the jazz potential of the song on his critically noted Way Out West (Contemporary, 1957). DeFrancesco extends this treatment with a building slow burn introduced by Coryell. The organist goes orchestral over Cobbs triplets, while the solo space is Vast, as Coryell begins linearly with moderate single-note flourishes before flexing his chops and approaching Joe Pass velocity, all without missing a beat.

DeFrancesco spices the mix with judiciously placed accents behind Coryell, before turning the gas on high and really beginning to cook. He begins slow, using perfected drama to affect his building dynamics. The piece ends in some of the best-behaved chaos recently Recorded, further evidence that DeFrancesco has put together a fine organ trio for Wonderful! Wonderful!.

Personnel: Joey DeFrancesco: organ; Larry Coryell: guitar; Jimmy Cobb: drums.

Year Released: 2012 | Record Label: HighNote Records | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


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