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Contemporary Days by Nathan Childers

Saxophonist Nathan Childers picked an appropriate name for his debut release. There's a brightness and energy in his thoroughly modern blend of straight-ahead, fusion and world influences that's more reminiscient of a day spent on a jazz festival lawn than a night spent in a club, although with over a decade of experience as a performer, he's completely familiar with both settings.

The son of jazz trumpeter and educator Gene Childers (who co-produced this album) and a former student of Yusef Lateef, Childers has an unusual wealth of experience and influences for a young player creating a debut album, and it pays off with an unusually individual and mature style as a composer and a confident approach to his horn. Leading a sextet here, largely made up of players from the three performing ensembles (a trio, quintet and big band) he leads in his current home base of New York City, he shows a generous but steady hand as a leader as well.

His willingness to explore some unusual approaches (the title track here uses some effectively subtle electronics and a Japanese musical scale, for instance) leave me wondering, in a positive way, what directions he may take in the future, but the place he's in right now is well worth your attention.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Nathan Childers
  • CD Title: Contemporary Days
  • Genre: Contemporary Jazz / Modern
  • Year Released: 2003
  • Record Label: Jazz Street Records
  • Tracks: Wishful Thinking, Facing East, Folklore, Orion, Above, Contemporary Days, Street Wise, How Long Is Forever, The Journeyman
  • Musicians: Nathan Childers (saxophones), Jeff Holmes (piano), Ryan Ferreira (guitar), Ike Sturm (bass), Ted Poor (drums), Lorene Entress (percussion)
  • Rating: Four Stars
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