Listening to the title tune on saxophonist Jeff Alkire’s latest release, One Summer in Winters, it’s easy to imagine Jeff sitting on a hillside playing to a herd of deer. Jeff conceived the melody for the song while sitting on a hill near Winters, California. However, that’s where the idyllic analogy ends. Winters is a small, rural, farming town; the rest of the CD sounds anything but.
Listening to One Summer in Winters reminds me of sitting at a bistro table in a small, dark jazz club. The music has that smoky, mellow, late night jazz sound.
Jeff wrote four of the nine cuts. Seven cuts feature a combination of Jeff Alkire on alto sax, Craig Bailey on flute, Kelvin Sholar on piano, and Riley Mullins on trumpet. The bottom is impeccably maintained by Esperanza Spalding on bass and Steve Johns on drums.
Of the other two cuts, "All the Things You Are" is performed by a trio of Jeff Alkire, Darek Oles on bass, and Lorca Hart on drums and includes nice standup bass and drum solos. On "Panama," Jeff is accompanied by Chuck MacKinnon on trumpet, Art Hirahara on piano, Chris Lightcap on bass, and Allison Miller on drums.
I like this CD a lot. Check it out!