The journeyman musician has played in everything from his own big band to a reggae-funk ensemble.
His CD, "Blues for Jakob," features him in a more intimate setting, leading The Michael Raitzyk Trio. Jeremy Blynn is on drums, and Jeff Reed plays bass.
The CD is an enjoyable 10-song collection made up of three originals and some familiar covers.
Raitzyk is clearly the centerpiece of the album. A versatile guitarist, he started playing at 6 years old. He started off with the usual folk songs, but when he was 11, he saw Pat Metheny perform with the Gary Burton Quartet at a concert in Baltimore. He became an instant jazz convert.
The album gets off to a strong start with Bud Powell’s "Webb City." Raitzyk quickly demonstrates his considerable guitar licks. Although there are no horns on the CD, Raitzyk’s nimble fingers and easy sense of rhythm infuse the song with more than enough swing.
"Midnight At The Oasis," the sultry-pop hit for Maria Muldaur back in the ‘70s, gets a funky, jazz treatment.
Other songs featured on the CD include "Polka Dots and Moonbeams" and "Old Devil Moon."
There’s a little bit of everything - jazz, blues, a touch of funk - on the CD for everyone.