What do you get when you place Turkish born composer/pianist Fahir Atakoglu with other cool cats like drummer Horacio Hernandez and bassist Anthony Jackson? A frolicky jam session of a CD entitled If.
Standing alone, these musicians have made their own weighty imprints in the jazz world. Atakoglu is well known for his symphonic works and motion picture film scores. He has churned out eight successful CDs that reaped close to two million in sales. Horacio El Negro Hernandez on the other hand, has backed up such musicians as McCoy Tyner and Carlos Santana, while Anthony Jackson is better known for his works with Paul Simon and Michel Camilo.
The jazz gods would be pleased with the trio's latest compilation. Why? This is because no one musician outshines the other. The musical camaraderie here is transparent as each musician is on equal footing.
The CD's title track "If" is evident of that since it features Atakoglu's versatile way of tickling the ivories darting in and out of the other players in a maypole-like fashion. This CD boasts tracks that is conducive to pure relaxation. It would do well as a perfect companion for your lazy Sunday afternoons spent in your backyard with family and friends.
There's music encapsulated here to suit varied taste and that’s because of Atakoglu’s his expansive piano expertise. He has the ability to make his instrument sound classical one minute, traditional jazz the next and even at times there are saloon type ragtime nuances that slip in for good measure.
The festive "Two Ways" is replete with some of these styles. "About Autumn (Seasons Change)" is the CD's first ballad and it's an enchanting ebb and flow with a romantically tasteful sax appearance by Donny McCaslin. Listen out for "Yana Yana", "Cool" and "Spur of the Night," three singles that are brimming with sunny synths and effervescence galore. "Saturday" is the joyful CD closer that leaves one wanting more of the trio. Thank goodness for the loop button on the CD player.