Tastefully proving his compelling genius, Tom Harrell performed at the infamous Blue Note with quintet members Marcus Strickland - sax (filling in for Jimmy Greene), Xavier Davis piano, Quincy Davis bass and Ugonna Okegwa drums. The early show was sparse, nonetheless enjoyable, but by the second set of the evening, the house was full of anticipating fans. A hush fell in respectful awe for Harrell’s emotional expressionism and what he has had to overcome in becoming one of the top jazz trumpeters on the scene today. With the evocative lyricism of Chet Baker, Harrell wove beautifully constructed sentences with saxophonist, Marcus Strickland reminiscent of the Baker/Mulligan performances of the early 50s.
Quietly standing with head bent and hands to his side while holding onto his trumpet, Tom Harrell rose again and again, inventing and composing undeniable solos from the "less is more" school of thought of Miles Davis and pianist, Bill Evans. It is this kind of sensitivity and exploration that has Harrell dominating the critics’ and readers’ polls over the past two decades.
Musician, arranger and composer, Harrell’s RCA releaseTime’s Mirror
, won a Grammy nomination and his 1998 Latin CD, The Art of Rhythm
, was named the Best Jazz Album of the Year (2000) by Entertainment Weekly. His latest release under BMG’s revived imprint, Bluebird, is entitled Paradise
and is said to be Tom’s most ambitious project to date. Constantly touring Europe and across the U.S., Tom Harrell’s melodic genius is a bright light in the essential core of jazz and his live performance should not be missed.