Karrin Allyson - Footprints- (2006 Concord Music Group)
What’s so very appealing about this disk is the showcasing of numerous talents along with primary vocalist Karrin Allyson. From the heartfelt lyrics of one Chris Caswell in this tenth spin to the added vocals of Jon Hendricks and Nancy King, who both have equal impact when it comes to the success of the spin "All You Need To Say." this exciting cut has an added uplifting experience as Ms. Allyson makes a fine effort with her scat performance. "Footprints" is just another step in the right direction for the talents of the fine vocalist. Modern Jazz has no easy side streets or avenues to direct a vocalist in the right direction for positive achievement, its hard work that gets Ms. Allyson the accolades she has deserved to embrace. Great spin for a quiet evening by the fire.... or anytime for that matter.
Dutch Jazz Orchestra - Rediscovered Music of Mary Lou Williams (2005 CRI)
Treasures from years gone by from the mind, heart, and talent of one Mary Lou Williams now unveils themselves through the perspective of the Dutch Jazz Orchestra with eloquence.. This is not a commonplace big band performance formed on this talented stage for this collection of artist's focuses on the inner soul of the music sheet scripted by Ms. Williams. The arrangements are decisive and full of mood swings befitting the compositions set forth. Classic horns segue into numerous changes alternating the personality of each cut as they were meant, without flaw. "What’s Your Story Morning Glory?" has such heat intensified grooves the performance is even more dramatic by the musical dissection of interpretation. The spin takes one back to the basic classroom or for that matter to the smoke filled stages where the pure classic sound generated moments for the ages. That being said these sounds from the Dutch Jazz Orchestra are being mainly designed for our pleasure from and through the genius of Ms. Mary Lou.... . A fine piece of collective artistry!