Paul J. Youngman - jazzreview.com - Your Jazz Music Connection - jazzreview.com - Your Jazz Music Connection http://www.jazzreview.com Wed, 24 May 2017 02:09:18 -0500 Joomla! - Open Source Content Management en-gb Fern Lindzon Two Kites http://www.jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/contemporary-jazz-cd-reviews/fern-lindzon-two-kites.html http://www.jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/contemporary-jazz-cd-reviews/fern-lindzon-two-kites.html Fern Lindzon Two Kites
The opening for "Distance" by Norma Winstone, a laid back groove by bassist Koller and the song falls into place as imagination is set free to roam through miles of melodic space. Lindzon sings beautifully, blending registers from mid range to high end and phrasing that perfectly flows as she incorporates sustain and vibrato in flawless grace.

Pianist and vocalist Fern Lindzon is based in Toronto, her second CD release Two Kites was recently nominated for a 2012 Juno award in the vocal jazz category. Her previous CD Moments Like These (2008) opened my ears to a delightful vocalist with a distinct style and a thoroughly polished command of her instruments, both vocal and piano.

On this outing Lindzon has surrounded herself with some of the best people on the Toronto jazz scene. Mike Murley, playing tenor and soprano saxophone, George Koller, playing bass and taking on the roll of producer and Nick Fraser drumming.

The opening for "Distance" by Norma Winstone, a laid back groove by bassist Koller and the song falls into place as imagination is set free to roam through miles of melodic space. Lindzon sings beautifully, blending registers from mid range to high end and phrasing that perfectly flows as she incorporates sustain and vibrato in flawless grace. Murley in accompaniment with the vocalist adds subtle, deep statements. During his lead statement, a sensual, romantic tenor tone takes flight and soars. The vocalist glides back in to gently fade.

The title track "Two Kites" by Antonio Carlos Jobim is played in an upbeat manner. A bouncy rhythm that has vocalist Lindzon leading a joyous take in a playful manner. Murley lets the tenor loose on this track and plays as if he is ready to plunge into the sea to cool it off. The lyrics for this song are priceless and Fern Lindzon has done a wonderful job interpreting them. Lindzon sings in Portuguese on "Ate Quem Sabe" and does an admirable job of it.

Lindzon continues with her superb interpretations as she flows through "Moon In The Sky/My Romance" Rodgers & Hart, "Basin Street Blues" by Spencer Williams and "If He's Ever Near" by Karla Bonoff. Ballads and the blues are given classical treatment, the Bonoff song is played as a folk ballad with jazz sensibilities and Broadway leanings. The blues of Basin Street is treated to a burlesque feel that is smothered with classic vocal charm. "My Romance" simply puts it all out there in a swinging ballad format that has everything a great song must have, even a delightful bass solo.

Two Kites includes two original Lindzon compositions "Grey Green" and "All Fall Down" two very different songs. One a haunting ballad with vocals and the other a fast paced swinging instrumental number. Lindzon's piano playing is the highlight of both of these songs.

The album also has a taste of Klezmer music in "Yam Lid/Lustige Chasidm/ Balkan Bellabusta" and Yiddish in "Donna Donna". Lindzon is a wonderful artist, she creates vocal magic for me and her piano playing - striking comes to mind, as does Monk and Evans. Two Kites is a thoroughly enjoyable listen that I look forward to playing - over and over.

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morrice.blackwell@gmail.com (Paul J. Youngman) Contemporary Jazz - CD Reviews Mon, 16 Apr 2012 02:59:44 -0500
2012 TD Toronto Jazz Festival http://www.jazzreview.com/jazz-news/press-releases/2012-td-toronto-jazz-festival.html http://www.jazzreview.com/jazz-news/press-releases/2012-td-toronto-jazz-festival.html 2012 TD Toronto Jazz Festival
Tomorrow's Jazz, Today! The TD Toronto Jazz Festival now in its 26th year has presented some of the biggest names in jazz. When the Festival kicks off this summer from June 22 – July 1, 2012, you will witness some of the biggest names in todays music.

Tomorrow's Jazz Today!

The TD Toronto Jazz Festival now in its 26th year, has presented some of the biggest names in jazz . When the Festival kicks off this summer from June 22 – July 1, 2012, more than 500,000 music lovers will be entertained as 1,500 musicians take over the city performing 350+ concerts in just 10 days. From the young lions to the legends, to undiscovered gems, the Festival is yours to discover. Let the music be your playground this summer. For detailed listings, club concerts and free concerts visit www.torontojazz.com

Featured Performances - Tickets on sale now!

FRIDAY, JUNE 22

Janelle Monae – Nathan Phillips Square 8pm

Kurt Rosenwinkel – Church of the Holy Trinity 7pm

SATURDAY, JUNE 23

TBC – Nathan Phillips Square 8pm

Destroyer – Opera House 9pm

SUNDAY, JUNE 24

Hiromi: The Trio Project / The Bad Plus with special guest Joshua Redman – Nathan Phillips Square 8pm

Ig Henneman Sextet – Music Gallery 8pm

Karrin Allyson – Enwave Theatre, Harbourfront Centre 7pm

Mike Stern Band – Horseshoe Tavern 9pm

MONDAY, JUNE 25

Los Amigos Invisibles – Horseshoe Tavern 10pm

François Houle Benoît Delbecq Duo / François Houle 5 – Music Gallery 8pm

Natalie Cole with special opening guest Mario Romano Quartet – Sony Centre 8pm

Roy Hargrove's RH Factor (with special guest Roberta Gambarini Quartet) – Nathan Phillips Square 8pm

Robert Glasper Experiment featuring Bilal – Enwave Theatre, Harbourfront Centre 7pm

TUESDAY, JUNE 26

George Benson (Treasa Levasseur opening) – Nathan Phillips Square 8pm

Bill Frisell Plays Lennon – Enwave Theatre, Harbourfront Centre 7pm

Peter Appleyard & The Sophisticated Ladies – Koerner Hall 8pm

Soul Rebels – Opera House 9pm

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 27

Phil Dwyer: A Canadian Songbook featuring Laila Biali – Church of the Holy Trinity 7pm

Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue (Saidah Baba Talibah opening) – Nathan Phillips Square 8pm

Ziggy Marley – Phoenix Concert Theatre 9pm

Spectrum Road featuring Jack Bruce, Vernon Reid, John Medeski & Cindy Blackman-Santana – Sound Academy 9pm

THURSDAY, JUNE 28

Benny Green – Church of the Holy Trinity 7pm

Angelika Niescier – Music Gallery 8pm

Chris Tarry – Rivoli 9:30pm

Esperanza Spalding (Gretchen Parlato opening) – Nathan Phillips Square 8pm

FRIDAY, JUNE 29

Karl Jannuska featuring Sienna Dahlen – Music Gallery 8pm

Kneebody – Rivoli 9pm

Tedeschi Trucks Band – Nathan Phillips Square 8pm

Radio Deluxe with the John Pizzarelli Quartet featuring Jessica Molaskey and special guest Emilie-Claire Barlow – Koerner Hall 8pm

SATURDAY, JUNE 30

Joan Osbourne Duo / Matt Anderson – Nathan Phillips Square 8pm

Hobson's Choice – Music Gallery 8pm

Becca Stevens Band / Nellie McKay – Horseshoe Tavern 10pm

SUNDAY, JULY 1

Sierra Leone's Refugee All-Stars – Nathan Phillips Square 8pm

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morrice.blackwell@gmail.com (Paul J. Youngman) Press Releases Sat, 14 Apr 2012 05:07:49 -0500
Carol Whitney Britto (1935-2012) http://www.jazzreview.com/jazz-news/musician-obituaries/carol-whitney-britto-1935-2012.html http://www.jazzreview.com/jazz-news/musician-obituaries/carol-whitney-britto-1935-2012.html Alone Together 1987
Carol Britto spent twenty years in Toronto, a regular fixture at Lyte's, George's Jazz Club and Bourbon Street before relocating to New York. In New York Carol played all the major clubs - Knickerbocker, Fortune Garden Pavilion, Village Corner, Birdland, Café Gianluca, J's, Zinno, Carnegie Tavern, Hanratty's, the Rainbow Room.

Carol Whitney Britto, virtuoso jazz pianist, died March 16, 2012 in New York City. Born in Cleveland, OH in 1935, she is survived by her children Jeff Britto, Karen Carter, and Eric Britto, her sister Jeanne Casey (Larry), her brother Mike Whitney (Rosemary), grandchildren, and loving nieces, nephews and friends. She was preceded in death by her husband, well-known bass player Bill Britto, and by her sisters Marilyn Whitney and Ilene McCarthy (Larry).

Carol Britto spent twenty years in Toronto before relocating to New York. In New York Carol played all the major clubs - Knickerbocker, Fortune Garden Pavilion, Village Corner, Birdland, Café Gianluca, J's, Zinno, Carnegie Tavern, Hanratty's, the Rainbow Room.

Britto studied with Oscar Peterson. "Oscar taught me how to be a take-charge pianist," she said. Her forceful energetic technique was often compared to his. With her Trio comprised of bassist Bill Britto, David Young or Michel Donato and drummer Don Vickery she was the long-time favorite at the Lyte's jazz room in Toronto's Royal York Hotel. Holding court at Georges Spaghetti House and Bourbon Street in the seventies and eighties. She was organist for the Toronto Blue Jays. She played at colleges and jazz festivals throughout North America. She was chosen to be an exclusive Baldwin Piano artist.

Famous in her own right, both solo and as a leader of her Carol Britto Trio, but perhaps best known as an accompanist par excellence. During her career she accompanied most of the legendary names in jazz, including Chet Baker, Benny Carter, Helen Humes, Joe Williams, Major Holley, Zoot Sims, Phoebe Snow, Joe Venuti, Doc Cheatham, Marvin Stamm, Roy Eldridge, Flip Phillips, Bobby Rosengarden, Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis, Gary Mazzaroppi, Milt Jackson, Lance Hayward, Tootsie Bean, and Michael Moore. She played with Percy Faith and his Orchestra. She toured with the Tommy Dorsey Band.

Trumpet player Marvin Stamm said of her, "If a visiting jazzman wants a powerful yet sensitive musical companion at the piano, nobody in the business can equal her." Tenor saxophonist Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis called her "Lady Britto, the Countess Basie of the piano." The great jazz violinist Joe Venuti called her simply, "Mother Jazz."

Britto's albums won her a wider audience and acclaim - "Alone Together" with Flip Phillips and Michael Moore, and "Inner Voices" with Michael Moore, both on the Town Crier label.

Carol Britto's daughter Karen plans a memorial website at CarolBritto.com.

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morrice.blackwell@gmail.com (Paul J. Youngman) Musician Obituaries Fri, 06 Apr 2012 22:32:46 -0500
JPEC Presents Luciana Souza and Romero Lubambo http://www.jazzreview.com/jazz-news/press-releases/jpec-presents-luciana-souza-and-romero-lubambo.html http://www.jazzreview.com/jazz-news/press-releases/jpec-presents-luciana-souza-and-romero-lubambo.html JPEC Presents Luciana  Souza and Romero Lubambo
Grammy winner Luciana Souza is one of the Jazz worlds leading singers and interpreters. Hailing from Sao Paulo, Brazil, she grew up in a family of Bossa Nova innovators. Her work as a performer transcends traditional boundaries around musical styles, offering solid roots in jazz, sophisticated lineage in world music, and an enlightened approach to classical repertoire and new music. As a leader, Luciana Souza has eight acclaimed releases including her four Grammy nominated records "Brazilian Duos,"

JPEC is proud to present Brazilian Duos, Luciana Souza and Romero Lubambo also featuring the Amanda Tosoff Quartet

Brazilian Duos is Luciana Souza – voice & Romero Lubambo – guitar

Saturday, April 21 @ 7:30PM Toronto Centre for the Arts – 5040 Yonge Street – George Weston Recital Hall

Ticket prices: $ 35 For tickets:http://www.ticketmaster.ca/Jpec-Presents-Brazilian-Duos-Amanda-Tosoff-Quartet-tickets/artist/1711484

Students: $ 15 (with I.D.)

Luciana Souza

Biography:

Grammy winner Luciana Souza is one of the Jazz worlds leading singers and interpreters. Hailing from Sao Paulo, Brazil, she grew up in a family of Bossa Nova innovators. Her work as a performer transcends traditional boundaries around musical styles, offering solid roots in jazz, sophisticated lineage in world music, and an enlightened approach to classical repertoire and new music.

As a leader, Luciana Souza has eight acclaimed releases including her four Grammy nominated records "Brazilian Duos," 2002, "North and South," 2003, and "Duos II," 2005, and "Tide," 2009.

Her debut recording for Universal/Verve (produced by her husband, Larry Klein), "The New Bossa Nova, " (2007) was met with critical acclaim (Bilboard Latin Jazz Album of the Year) and

on "Tide," Luciana "continued her captivating journey as a uniquely talented vocalist who organically crosses genre borders.

Romero Lubambo

Biography

In 1985, Romero Lubambo came to the United States, and brought with him a new sound in Brazilian jazz guitar. Romero's guitar playing unites the styles and rhythms of his native Brazilian musical heritage with his fluency in the American jazz tradition to form a distinctive new sound. From the cool, sophisticated rhythms of his native Brazil to hard bop, Romero is a guitarist who is comfortable in any musical setting. He is an uncommonly gifted soloist and musical improviser with a steady stream of unpredictably creative musical thoughts and the virtuosity to deliver them ever so tastefully.

Lubambo has performed and recorded with many outstanding artists, including Dianne Reeves, Michael Brecker, Diana Krall, Herbie Mann, Wynton Marsalis, Kurt Elling, Kenny Barron and James Carter... among many others.

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morrice.blackwell@gmail.com (Paul J. Youngman) Press Releases Tue, 03 Apr 2012 03:39:59 -0500
JPEC Presents Tom Harell http://www.jazzreview.com/jazz-news/press-releases/jpec-presents-tom-harell.html http://www.jazzreview.com/jazz-news/press-releases/jpec-presents-tom-harell.html JPEC presents Tom Harrell Quintet & Opener Paul Tynan Quartet Friday, March 16 @ Glenn Gould Studio Toronto, ON – Friday, February 24, 2012 -- JPEC's double bill on March 16 will present two generations of trumpet masters. The Jazz Performance and Education Centre (JPEC) - www.jazzcentre.ca - presents the third concert series of 2011/12 at the Glenn Gould Studio.Tom Harrell leads his quintet with Johnathan Blake, Wayne Escoffery, David Berkman and Ugonna Okegwo. Originally a member of the post-bop school;

JPEC presents Tom Harrell Quintet

& Opener Paul Tynan Quartet

Friday, March 16, 2012 - Glenn Gould Studio

Toronto, ON – Friday, February 24, 2012 -- JPEC's double bill on March 16 will present two generations of trumpet masters. The Jazz Performance and Education Centre (JPEC) - www.jazzcentre.ca - presents the third concert series of 2011/12 at the Glenn Gould Studio.

Tom Harrell leads his quintet with Johnathan Blake, Wayne Escoffery, David Berkman and Ugonna Okegwo. Originally a member of the post-bop school; Harrell has performed and recorded with the likes of Horace Silver, Bill Evans, Dizzy Gillespie, Charlie Haden, and Lee Konitz (who graced JPEC's stage last year)

Appearing on over 260 recordings, Harrell has been an active musician since the 1960s and has garnered numerous awards along the way. His influence permeates the jazz scene—Ron Carter, Joe Lovano, Chris Potter, and Hank Jones are among the notable jazz instrumentalists who have recorded Harrell's compositions.

Tickets are $20 for adults or four for $40 or 10 for $75 and $5 for students (proper student ID required). Tickets available at www.ticketmaster.ca or 1.855.985.2787 or online

www.jazzcentre.ca or available at the GGS box office - 416-872-4255. More information on the concert:

http://www.jazzcentre.ca/Concerts.html

The Paul Tynan quartet will open the show, and features Toronto's esteemed David Braid, Jon Maharaj, and Ethan Ardelli. To label Tynan simply as a "new generation" trumpeter might be misleading. He has performed with legendary artists like Clark Terry, Kenny Wheeler and Bob Brookmeyer, as well as Michael Brecker, Kenny Werner and Chris Potter. Tynan is also an active educator. He has taught at prestigious jazz schools in the United States and currently runs programs supported by the Canada Council for the Arts and The Nova Scotia Department of Culture.

Beyond their common instrument, Harrell and Tynan are both Down Beat award winners and are ranked among the top performers and composers in jazz. Their appearance on Toronto's stage in March will be an exciting lineage of the trumpet.

The Jazz Performance and Education Centre is committed to supporting the development of the next generation of jazz musicians and audience members. Through programming for students and fans of all ages, JPEC is seeking to instil a love of jazz today in those that will create and support the music tomorrow.

JPEC - www.jazzcentre.ca - is the result of collaboration between business people, musicians and arts professionals who are passionate about jazz in Toronto. Officially incorporated in 2008, the concept for the Jazz Performance and Education Centre was born in 2007 when jazz aficionados Raymond and Rochelle Koskie assembled a committee of fellow enthusiasts to address the need for a full-time jazz venue in Toronto. This first-class, multi-purpose facility will feature performances by top local, national and international jazz talent, educational programming in which fans of all ages can learn about jazz, recording facilities, a Hall of Fame and Archives which will encompass and preserve Canada's outstanding jazz heritage and tradition. The facility will enhance Toronto's reputation as one of the best cities in North America in which to experience live jazz.

JPEC's 2011-2012 season is generously supported by Castlepoint, Yamaha Canada Music, Koskie Minsky LLP, RBC Foundation, Tridel, BPA Group, Premform, that PR thing and media partners JAZZ.FM91 and National Post.

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morrice.blackwell@gmail.com (Paul J. Youngman) Press Releases Wed, 29 Feb 2012 08:44:38 -0600
Aspects of Oscar by Dave Young Quintet http://www.jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/straight-ahead-classic-cd-reviews/aspects-of-oscar-by-dave-young-quintet.html http://www.jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/straight-ahead-classic-cd-reviews/aspects-of-oscar-by-dave-young-quintet.html Aspects of Oscar by Dave Young Quintet
Aspects Of Oscar is one of the finest tributes to the master pianist Oscar Peterson that I have ever heard. The fact that it's under the leadership of my favorite bassist, Dave Young and features a band of talented Canadian musicians makes it all the more enjoyable. Dave Young's professional relationship with jazz giant Oscar Peterson spanned three decades during which he played in the Oscar Peterson Trio in appearances all over the world up until Peterson's death. "To my way of thinking, Dave Young is one of the most talented bassists on the jazz scene. His harmonic sympatico and…

Aspects Of Oscar is one of the finest tributes to the master pianist Oscar Peterson that I have ever heard. The fact that it's under the leadership of my favorite bassist, Dave Young and features a band of talented Canadian musicians makes it all the more enjoyable. Dave Young's professional relationship with jazz giant Oscar Peterson spanned three decades during which he played in the Oscar Peterson Trio in appearances all over the world up until Peterson's death. "To my way of thinking, Dave Young is one of the most talented bassists on the jazz scene. His harmonic sympatico and unerring sense of time have kept him in the foreground of the jazz picture." - Dr. Oscar Peterson

There are no weak links on this production, award winning producer/bassist Roberto Occhipinti has done a superlative job. The supporting cast of musicians are harmoniously in-sync with Young, his arrangements and with the Peterson songbook. The recording has captured a beautiful, emotional and tender musical portrait of Peterson as masterful a composer as he was a pianist.

From the masterpiece of Canadiana Suite (1964 Limelight Records), "Wheatland" opens the recording, a stirring melody of melancholy, yet a song full of hope that leads to a swinging ballad with guitarist Reg Schwager doing his best impression of Herb Ellis and Joe Pass. The standards are anything but, "I've Never Been In Love Before" swinging through and through, driven by the pulsing bass of Young and the drums of Terry Clarke making plenty of room for Robi Botos to show why he amongst the many top rated pianists who could have been called upon was given the task of laying down Peterson inspired piano lines. "Younger Than Springtime", "Smile", "Just Friend" and "Somewhere" are all treated fairly - each song given a fresh face, yet so very reminiscent of something Peterson would have played. "Cakewalk" another Peterson original lets fly with fire as trumpeter Kevin Turcotte burns from bright to brilliant. Young never fails to impress, every solo he embarks upon is outstanding, be it pizzicato or arco - the sound, the intonation, dynamics, excitement and passion always come through.

The final trio of compositions, all originals from Oscar Peterson, Live (1986 Pablo) "Bach suite-Andante", "Bach Suite-Fugue" and "Bach Blues" pure classical jazz as only classical jazz musicians could perform. Classical that swings, opening with heavy-handed bass melody and preceding to melodious ensemble work. Bach reigns supreme. The finale of "Bach Blues" leads us back to a song of hope a marching blues to freedom the freedom to play. Inspired and inspirational, Aspects Of Oscar by the Dave Young Quintet - a masterpiece.

Upon the death of Neils-Henning Pedersen, internationally famous bassist in the Oscar Petersen Quartet, Oscar had recently written in his online journal:

"David (Young) has been known, not only in Canadian music circles but because of his various travels in other countries, to be a more than talented bassist .....I immediately called on Dave to stand in the now empty bass position in my quartet. This was a decision that was made without any second thoughts due to the fact that David and I have worked and recorded together at earlier periods in my career. Happily, he responded unhesitatingly, and immediately agreed to join us. For those of you who may not be familiar with David's work, let me say this: David has stepped into a line of heavy jazz bass tradition that has preceded him. It is no easy task to follow the musical offerings of bassists such as Sam Jones, Ray Brown and Niels-Henning Pedersen. I cannot think of too many other bassists that would have the courage and, needless to say, the talent to walk in those musical footsteps!"

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morrice.blackwell@gmail.com (Paul J. Youngman) Straight-Ahead - CD Reviews Sat, 11 Feb 2012 22:50:30 -0600
Andrea Faschetti - Cinema http://www.jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/contemporary-jazz-cd-reviews/andrea-faschetti-cinema.html http://www.jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/contemporary-jazz-cd-reviews/andrea-faschetti-cinema.html Andrea Faschetti - Cinema
Andrea Fascetti, the Italian electric bassist has a second album as leader, Cinema. His first CD - dedicated to Steve Swallow, entitled Dedicated To Steve 2008 on the Philology label displayed Fascetti's formidable talents as a seven-string bassist.

Andrea Fascetti, the Italian electric bassist has a second album as leader, Cinema. His first CD - dedicated to Steve Swallow, entitled Dedicated To Steve 2008 on the Philology label displayed Fascetti's formidable talents as a seven-string bassist. Cinema finds Fascetti exploring the movie soundtrack genre along with pianist Andrea Caribaldi, and drummer Massimo Manzi. Guest artist on three of the songs is trumpeter Marco Bartalini. Of the ten songs that make up the album three are Fascetti originals, tributes to his movie idols and his self-professed love of cinema.

On the original composition "Vincent Price", dedicated to the actor who appeared in numerous classic movies from the late 1930's through to the 90's, Fascetti gives the superstar of horror a classic romp. Through a spirited, moderately paced song with Bartalini's grinding Flugelhorn at centre stage the plot twists and turns with emotional highs and lows. Fascetti reverts to the basics with a solid marching bass line sounding like an acoustic bass and accompanied by a cool rhythm from drummer Manzi producing a "Peter Gunn" kind of feel- Mancini's essence of cool. A sinister tension builds under the haunting Flugelhorn sounds and dynamic piano playing by Caribaldi that accentuate the drama, ending on a satisfying blue note.

The other two original compositions "A Mario Monicelli" and "Cinema Centrale" are very different from each other, the former, a beautiful ballad, a moving tribute to one of Italy's foremost movie directors, the later a fast paced, exciting composition. The trio moves into fusion territory on "Cinema Centrale" with all band members burning. The seven strings of Fascetti's bass are tested, while drums fire on overdrive and piano weaves an intricate melodic brocade. 

The sound track songs make for fun listening. Some movies overshadow the songs, "Schindler's List" and "Twisted Nerve" (theme song for Kill Bill) are songs that do not really jump out at you as a reminder of their respective movies. "Alice In Wonderland", "Days of Wine and Roses" and "Mission Impossible" are immediately recognizable as movie sound tracks. "Secret Love" an Oscar winning song for Doris Day and "When I Fall In Love" from the 1952 Robert Mitchum movie One Minute to Zero are songs that have become classics. Fascetti gives the song "When I Fall In Love" its romantic due, adding trumpeter Bartalini, who tears out heart and soul in less than three minutes.

Cinema is a tasteful album, a wonderful production and highlights a gifted group of musicians under the talented leadership of electric bassist and composer Mr. Andrea Fascetti. 

 

 

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morrice.blackwell@gmail.com (Paul J. Youngman) Contemporary Jazz - CD Reviews Thu, 05 Jan 2012 08:03:42 -0600
Lionel Loueke Trio & Darren Sigesmund Strands Sextet http://www.jazzreview.com/concert-reviews/lionel-loueke-trio-darren-sigesmund-strands-sextet.html http://www.jazzreview.com/concert-reviews/lionel-loueke-trio-darren-sigesmund-strands-sextet.html Lionel Loueke
What better manner to warm a frosty Toronto night than taking in a concert by West African born and New York based Lionel Loueke at the spacious and grand TO Centre for the Arts in North York.

What better manner to warm a frosty Toronto night than taking in a concert by West African born and New York based Lionel Loueke at the spacious and grand TO Centre for the Arts in North York. My guest and I are led to our seats in the theatre, the usher quickly finds the required points of detail that will place us in the correct seats. The theatre is a good size and I was happy to see so many people out to enjoy the show. The curtain was drawn and musicians were warming up, horn players running through some scales, I was contemplating who in the opening act could be doing this. I should have clued in with the program, it was a program for the show "The Adams Family". However, it took two people with real tickets coming in and informing us we had the wrong seats. "Oh you're here for the jazz." We were pointed in the direction of the small theatre.

This is more like it, an intimate theatre with a couple of hundred seats, instruments on stage and visible - no curtain. A stand up bass, a jazzy looking set of drums and a few microphones on stands at the front of the stage. Confirming this as the right place I was given a new program announcing the JPEC 2011/2012 concert series. This is the first concert of the series, The Lionel Loueke Trio and Darren Sigesmund Strands Sextet. The series also includes: Lucien Ban & John Hebert, Enesco Re-imagined also featuring Peripheral Vision, February 17, 2012. The Tom Harrell Quintet also featuring Paul Tynan Quartet March 16, 2012. And the finale concert, Luciana Souza & Romero Lubambo Brazilian Duos also featuring Amanda Tosoff Quartet April 21, 2012.

Darren Sigesmund Strands Sextet opened the show; the band is made up of Toronto musicians: Sigesmund - Trombone, Luis Deniz - Alto Saxophone, Reg Schwager - Guitar, Jim Vivian - Bass, Fabio Ragnelli - Drums and Eliana Cuevas - Vocals. The sound was not great on the first song. I could not hear a good mix of the instruments. The sound magically came together for the second song and the sound remained pleasant throughout.

A most memorable song from Sigesmund "Dance for Leila" with influences of Latin, Sephardic, Middle Eastern and the Balkan rhythms swirling and dancing in delightful concert with each other as vocalist Cuevas sings with wordless power and splendid tonal control. Sigesmund composes complex tunes with multi ranging tones that crisscross musical borders with seamless ease. He weaves layer upon layer of sound that comes through clearly on most of the songs the group performs. The solos that were played in all of the songs are indicative of first class musicians at the top of their craft. I hope to hear more from Sigesmund and the Strands Project, with two independent CD's released since 2008, Strands I and Strands II, and in the works, due out in the Spring of 2012, Strands III. Somebody should send me some of this for a closer listen.

Lionel Loueke Trio arrived on stage looking casual, announcements were made and members of the trio introduced, Massimo Biolcati - Bass, Ferenc Nemeth - Drums. Loueke announced that the trio would play songs from their first album Karibu and their newest release Mwaliko in Swahili this means Invitation. The songs they performed flowed smoothly, propelled by intricate guitar and founded on the solid, yet probing bass of Biolcati filling out the bottom end. The drums of Nemeth play free flowing with melodic precision and tasteful fills that round out any room for empty space.

Loueke mixes his cultural traditions, the music of West Africa with strong jazz sensibilities and contemporary technology. He has a distinct style, that individualism that sets him apart from your typical jazz guitarist. Loueke has a fearless style of blending all manner of guitar playing - picking, pulling, strumming, harmonic plucking and using the guitars body as a beat box. This combined with his Canadian guitar, a Godin with built in Synth and an ability to sing with a good strong voice as well as an impeccable ability as a percussionist make him one of the stand out performers of our time.

Loueke and the trio played with warmth and passion. They displayed their intense artistry through solo performances and tight complimentary ensemble playing. There were many moments when the stage glowed with the intensity of the blazing musicianship that culminated in a rousing standing ovation that brought the trio back for one more intense song. Bravo!

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morrice.blackwell@gmail.com (Paul J. Youngman) Concert Reviews Mon, 28 Nov 2011 18:58:25 -0600
Timeless http://www.jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/jazz-vocals-cd-reviews/timeless.html http://www.jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/jazz-vocals-cd-reviews/timeless.html Timeless
Colin Hunter is a Toronto-based vocalist who sings as a passionate hobby. He sings the standards from that period of time when jazz was the popular music of the day. His style of singing is a classic mix of Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Tony Bennett and Perry Como.

Colin Hunter is a Toronto based vocalist who sings as a passionate hobby. He sings the standards from that period of time when jazz was the popular music of the day. His style of singing is a classic mix of Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Tony Bennett and Perry Como, or at least some mannerisms of each of those master crooners are prevalent in his style of singing.

Timeless, as the title suggests, includes the tunes that are of a timeless variety and they are presented wonderfully. Hunter is backed up by The Starlight Orchestra. The sound, musicianship and arrangements of these classics are all well done.

When not making music, Colin Hunter is the founding president, CEO and owner of the airline carrier Sunwing Airlines, and the all-inclusive vacation package company, Sunwing Vacations, a top-rated travel organization in Canada. Colin has worked in the travel industry for over 45 years and was co-founder of the airline company Canada 3000. Mr. Hunter is the Chairman of the Board, a moniker some times referred to Frank Sinatra.  

Hunter's first CD, Come Fly With Me (Independent 2005), started out as an advertising idea, but quickly blossomed into the featured music on Sunwing flights that found the passengers approving. With the support of his customers and fans, he set to work on his second CD Timeless. He has produced five albums as of this date and he seems to be going strong. There is even talk of a new Toronto jazz club, The House of Jazz, scheduled to open late in 2011, operating under Hunter's management.    

I enjoy big bands and I love swing, so for me, this is an enjoyable CD. With songs as catchy as "New York, New York," "Mack The Knife" and "I've Got The World On A String," what's not to like? Classics that are given a smooth and polished finish with Hunter's appealing vocalizations, and backed up by a superb orchestra, the CD all comes together as close to perfection in vocal big band jazz. My only complaint is how short the songs are. Of the twenty songs on Timeless, only four are over three minutes in length with the average clocking in at two and a half minutes. However, in the fifties and sixties, three minutes was about the maximum length of a song.  

One of the classics included on Timeless is "Quando, Quando," a swinging version with a killer flute solo by an unnamed flutist. While on "Volare," some Italian lessons would be good, as the accent is not quite right, but the tune swings big time. "That's Amore" is a fun and sophisticated Italian romp by that amazing Italian/American wordsmith Harry Warren. A hit song from the 1953 Martin and Lewis film "The Caddy," "it brings back fond memories of Dean Martin. "Summer Wind" is a pleasant version with a more uplifting style than Sinatra's with phrasing that flows smoothly.

Let the Chairman of the Board from Sunwing, Mr. Colin Hunter, escort you on a flight through these classic tunes.

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morrice.blackwell@gmail.com (Paul J. Youngman) Jazz Vocals - CD Reviews Sun, 16 Oct 2011 18:56:04 -0500
Pascal Niggenkemper Trio http://www.jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/contemporary-jazz-cd-reviews/pascal-niggenkemper-trio.html http://www.jazzreview.com/cd-reviews/contemporary-jazz-cd-reviews/pascal-niggenkemper-trio.html Pascal Niggenkemper Trio
The Pascal Niggenkemper Trio released Urban Creatures in 2010. The CD was recorded at the Loft Koln, Germany in 2008. Niggenkemper a double bassist leads the band and is the producer

 

The Pascal Niggenkemper Trio released Urban Creatures in 2010. The CD was recorded at the Loft, Koln Germany in 2008. Niggenkemper a double bassist leads the band and is the producer of the project. A project he is mostly responsible for, penning all of the compositions with the exception of "Tomorrow" by saxophonist Robin Verheyan and "Day After Tomorrow" by drummer/pianist Tyshawn Sorey.

 

Opening with "Brothers" the musicians immediately put it all out there, setting the record straight that they have come to play and play they can. A fast tune that has much in the way of individualization, displaying a talented trio of musicians.

 

The second composition of the album entitled "rush hour in the bathtub" is also played in a rapid tempo. There is a helter skelter feel to this song that makes me think of the organized chaos one may encounter crossing a busy street in Manhattan. The starts and stops of saxophone by Verheyan are overlaid on a revolving current of percussive vibrations as master beater Tyshawn Sorey expertly flies around the solid bottom end laid down by Niggenkemper.

 

The remaining songs are played in a moderato or adagio tempo. The songs that are drawn out in a slower pace leave more room for the musicians to experiment with sound. This is not to say that this is avant-garde music but it has an element of exploration that finds a solid structure or rhythm manipulated with off beat sounds and off kilter tones. Pauses and acoustic melodics are used to accentuate or highlight the compositions that are played throughout.

 

The ballad "Poeme Dans L'obscurite" features a haunting melody that has Niggenkemper opening the tune with heavy-handed melodic bass playing. The soprano sax of Verheyan enters with glowing tones while Sorey creates ambiance with background percussion thunder as if striking a gong and rolling on tympani.

 

A cool tune "I Am Surprised" has an element of funk to it with a rolling bass line and tick tock drumming. The serenading Verheyan, blows melodic saxophone over top of the rhythm and produces an enchanting groove.

 

Many of the compositions are loose, "Roger" is a good example of a tune that wanders, a trippy melody, allowing that musical space where the musicians branch out to experiment with sound.  

 

The Pascal Niggenkemper Trio, Urban Creatures is a tastefully done production that showcases some excellent musicianship. The compositions are well thought out and interesting although they seem guarded. The first two compositions are wild and exciting while the remaining compositions never open up completely.

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morrice.blackwell@gmail.com (Paul J. Youngman) Contemporary Jazz - CD Reviews Sun, 25 Sep 2011 10:56:55 -0500