Guitarist and composer Mike Kennedy has brought a 60's combo feeling to Quartet No. 1
. The use of the Hammond B-3 organ is the hook that brought me into this CD. Lucas Brown's B-3 style shows throughout the release, but Kennedy's guitar also makes Quartet No. 1
bright and melodious. For my taste, usually straight ahead jazz is not my cup of tea, but Kennedy's release kept me interested through the entire CD.Quartet No. 1
has enough diverse tracks to introduce a lot of borderline jazz listeners to try some of the straight ahead grooves of Mike Kennedy and his great backup musicians. Chris Farr is on tenor and soprano sax, Dan Monaghan is on the drums and Brown's organ work. They seem to work well with each other and play off each other as well.
A major reason why this collection works is because of the strong writing of Mike Kennedy. Kennedy wrote all ten tracks and even though the arrangements rival some of the best jazz tracks of the 60's, there is a contemporary feel to the material that brings about today's emotions. Even though each performer does have its time on each number, there is still signs of song structure that makes each song listenable.
Some people who got their first introduction to jazz by listening to smooth jazz radio and want to move their appreciation of jazz to the next level, Quartet No. 1
is a must have for any collection. Kennedy has brought traditional jazz into the 21st Century with today's sensitivity and classic taste.