jazz/blues adds may 20, 2014


seamus blake /chris cheek.  reeds ramble.  criss cross.  Yummy because it has the smoothness of two polished tenors– chris ceek and seamus blake– and then we add the extravagant unpredictability of pianist ethan iverson (the bad plus). Sometimes the excellence gap appears;  i.e.,‘ na carreira = fabulous, but 1974 blues, less pioneering.  find your way;  personal favorite =  ’til i die.   drumming from jochen rueckert and bass work of matt penman glues this finery with craft.

bill coon/jodi proznick/miles black.  trilogy.  cellar live.  Vancouver trio driven hard by bassist jodi proznick,  though i love the compositions of their pianist miles black;  bill coon on guitar.  mellow cues–coon’s guitar is soft, swingy;  morocco and ballad of the true north, delightful.    it’s old school and vibrant at the same time;  love this label.

craig wuepper.  storytelling.  cellar live.  From the archives of Vancouver-based cellar live label, drummer craig wuepper takes us to NYC, 2002 and the swoony piano music of the late harry whitaker (1942-2010).  this impromptu set also yielded tenor work from whitaker’s often collaborator,  david schnitter, +  the bass of pat o’leary. 

grrl power.  Hot tone records has 3 good ones here;  each young woman musician leads her own band, composes much of their setlist, and  plays on the other’s release.  Bassist/vocalist mimi jones produces all three;  vocalist extraordinaire  camille thurman sings  & plays her many reeds on all;  shirazette tinnin drums on all three, sharing the spotlight with brilliant rudy royston on  thurman’s origins.   guest soloists reads like Who’s Who of Young Women in Jazz– tia fuller, rachel eckroth, ingrid jensen, mala waldron, miki hayama, amanda ruzza + guys,  luis perdomo, enoch smith jr, marvin sewell, willerm delisfort, tom dicarlo.  smartly done.
mimi jones.  balance.  hot tone.
camille thurman.  origins.  hot tone.
shirazette tinnin.  humilty: purity of my soul.  hot tone. 

bria skonberg.  into your own.  random act.  More young grrl power.  dateline: a farm in Chilliwck, BC, early singing and trumpet lessons, gigs @ Vancouver Olympics, fast forward to busking in NYC, mentorship with cornet master warren vache.  high energy vocals & horn;  confident compositions.  mino cinelu, percussion;  dalton ridenhour, piano collaborator. 


kavita shah.  visions.  inner circle.  Harvard/Manhattan Music educated, downbeat award-winning vocalist 2012, kavita shah makes a grand debut with a set of Indian tabla vocals, Brazilian + Malian influences.  produced by & co-starring  guitarist lionel loueke;  with linda oh, bass;  steve wilson, reeds;  rogerio boccato, percussion.  inventive arrangements make it work.


mike pope.  cold truth,  warm heart.  walk your dogma.  Life altering medical event gave jazz bassist mike pope the will to make this all -originals release.  Sidemen include seamus blake on tenor;  joe locke, vibraphone;  geoffrey keezer & alan blackman, piano;  mauricio zottarelli@drums. 

jerry bergonzi.  intersecting lines.  savant.  Outstanding quartet  features jerry bergonzi on tenor + dick oatts, alto, with dave santoro, bass, and versatile andrea michelutti@drums.  all originals play list;  lyricism, movement, atmophere. 

jd allen.  bloom.  savant.  Rising star jd allen is a smooth as silk tenor player;  almost all original compostions that acknowledge the gentle intersection of classical/ American songbook and jazz improv;   orrin evans, piano;  alexander claffy, bass;  jonathan barber @drums. 

jouis hayes.  return of the jazz communicators.  smoke sessions.  Veteran drummer who worked with everyone–most notably horace silver, cannonball adderley, and oscar peterson– reassembles a quintet from the heydays of bop with young blood;  david bryant, piano;  dezron douglas, bass;  abraham burton, tenor,  and the  impeccable vibraphone of steve nelson. 


blues  (are really good this week)

gregg allman + various.  all my friends.  rounder.   January 14, 2014:  fox theatre, Atlanta, Ga.  Concert celebrating the music and voice of gregg allman.  the gathering included the blues mighty–martina mcbride, robert randolph, susan tedeschi, trace adkins, derek trucks, devon allman+ more. 

steve dawson.  rattlesnake cage.  black hen.  Virtuoso guitarist (and owner of Vancouver, BC black hen label) steve dawson goes “walkin blues” with all originals, acoustic cd that celebrates the power and sophistication of performance, plain and simple.  drop the needle, it’s all good.  dawson also does brilliant slide work on jim byrnes, st louis times.

jim byrnes.   st. louis times.  black hen.  Career capstone recording from US expat-now Canadian vocalist of 2014.  arc of the playlist is jazz/blues/gospel tribute to byrnes hometown, St Louis, MO.  some originals, but the fever here is byrnes’ sly delivery of these killer arrangements and the players thereon:  like tom colcough on clarinet;  darryl havers, organ;  steve dawson, slide guitar;  colin james, acoustic guitar;   john hammond, harmonica;  horn charts by jim hoke. 

john primer + the teardrops.  you can make it if you try!.  wolf.  Vienna, Austria label, wolf, releases a 1990’s live recording of magic slim sideman john primer–playing with magic’s band, the teardrops.  a tribute to Chicago blues, its origins and legacy, primer sings,  plays guitar, with enormous skill and unique style.


jazz/blues adds may 13, 2014


meklit.  we are alive.  six degrees.  Original, brave (politics + music) vocals from San Francisco via Ethiopia singer meklit hadero.  smitten @ first cue– even before reading the liner notes by novelist walter mosley–this cd merits un detour for those chasing down vocalists cutting a daring edge.  core band = darren johnson, trumpet;  sam bevan, many percussives;  lorca hart @ drums;  meklit on  guitar, piano, Farfisa  plus guests

sonny rollins.  road shows, volume 3okeh.   Sonny, live, in the new millenium;  six extended plays from tenor madness master on the road.  band constants are peter bernstein, guitar;  bob cranshaw, bass;  clifton anderson, trombone;  sammy figueroa, percussion;  kobie watkins + victor lewis + perry wilson + steve jordan sharing drums.   ports of call = Japan, France x 4, St.Louis.
mario pavone.  street songs.  playscape.  Compelling, avant garde bassist offers a friendly mix of  “ethnic” New England music;  the ethnics include  tonal pioneers alban berg & charles ives;  rolling accordion sounds from adam matlock, the foraging  trumpet/flugel of dave ballou (#cville w/ michael musillami), and pulsing beat from steve johns@drums  + second bass, carl testa.   as i said, friendly.

beat funktion.  voodooland.  domusic.   Funk and 70’s dance-ables  from the country that gave us abba.  polished Swedish hipsters  (led by arranger/composer/keyboardist daniel lantz) voodooland  seems less raw, spicy than previous moon town.  karl olandersson, trumpet;  olle thunstrom, tenor;  johan oijen +pal johnson, electric guitar +bass;  jon eriksson@drums.

steve kroon.  on the #1.  kroonatune.   Groove-y, gently swaying cues from congero steve kroon and his percussion-based ensemble.  kroon, a son of Harlem, has 35 years of spreading the sounds of tito puente and other NYC Latin legends.  discover.

michael fiorino.  ensemble 456.  self.  Debut cd of Chicago bassist as a leader/composer;  septet plus occasional singer (gingi lahera).  veteran musican fiorino prides himself on his crossover talents.

geof  bradfield.  melba!.  origin.  Tribute to composer/trombonist melba liston from tenor geof bradfield.  all originals form a biographical suite of liston’s musical life:  her collaboration with randy weston travels from LA’s Central Avenue to Detroit’s motown, later Kingston’s reggae.  innovation from origin.


elias haslanger.  live @ the gallery.  cherrywood.   Austin calling:    subtitled, church on monday, because tenor elias haslanger enlists dr james polk on B-3 as a co-leader.  dr. polk– in a previous life– directed the ray charles touring band.  together, haslanger + polk and rhythm section do fine damage to jazz classics.  antidote to my B-3 allergy. 


matt garrison.  patchwork.  stop time.  Grating vocalist ruins a promising collaboration, led by versatile reed musician matt garrison,.  i could not listen to this one.

wayne riker mob.  groovin with the top brass.  fretfull.    Wind/brass ensemble playing a little bit of everything;  all original compositions by leader/guitarist riker.  many horns and they all get a turn:  april west, trombone;  gilbert castellanos, trumpet;  bob campbell, tenor +troy jennings, bari.

billy porter.  billy’s back on broadway.  concord.  Tony star of kinky boots, movies, tv– full celebrity.  show tunes and porter’s multi-octave celestial voice use all concord jazz’s musical resources, i.e. harp solo in take the moment arrangement,  blues band + strings for i am changing.  maybe less production next time, but billy’s got pipes.

john a. lewis.   one trip out.  valarteri.  All originals setlist from Dallas,TX based trio led by pianist john a. lewis–no relation to john lewis of the mjq;  lincoln apeland on bass, merik gillett @ drums.   rhythmic, traditional jazz trio.


charlie patton.   the complete recordings 1929-34.  acrobat.  Three cd archival treasure of the complete works of charley patton (1891-1934) a Mississippi Delta blues legend.  dipped into all three, and though exhaustive, it paints a blues world both domestic and religious: songs with names like  pea vine blues, heart like railroad steel, when your way gets dark and mind reader blues.  charley patton  plays guitar, with henry sims on violin, bertha lee, vocals.


kim simmonds +  savoy browngoin to the delta.  ruf  Blues trio led by  experienced Welsh guitar/vocalist kim simmonds;  pat de salvo, bass;  garnet grimm@drums.  Chicago blues from the 1950-60’s;  it’s back everywhere.

bad brad & the fat cats.  take a walk with me self.   Young, energetic  bluesmen from Denver, Colorado exploring all the ways to play blues– a la funk, gospel, cajun.  led by brad stivers on guitar/vocals;  nic clark, harmonica;  alex stivers@ drums.   good guests.

little mike and the tornadoes.  all the right moves.  elrob.  Modeled after Chicago blues bands of the 50’s, little mike (michael markowitz) writes his own, and plays blues harp.  band rounds out with jim mckaba on piano;  brad vickers, bass;  rob piazza@drums;  tony melio, guitar.

jazz/blues adds may 7, 2014


caterina zapponi.  romantica.  motema.    Italian/French vocalist caterina zapponi keeps a cabaret mood in her polished debut cd;  husband monty alexander plays piano, melodica;  bucky pizzarelli, frank vignola + yotam silberstein trade the guitar spot;  martin pizzarelli, bass;  kristin jorgensen, violin on estate, etienne charles learns the cuartro.  lots of henri salvador, charles trenet;  loved it.

jessica williams.  with love.  origin.  Poetic piano stylist & composer jessica williams returns with her first release in two years.  solo piano, standards mostly but the most stunning is her own composition, paradise of love;  she’s been in the hospital having her spine rebuilt with rods and stainless, and she is filled with gratitude to be upright and playing again.

arturo o’farrill.  the offense of the drum.  motema.  The best arguement for the future of Afro-Cuban jazz, pianist/leader arturo o’farrilll’s orchestra and setlist embraces all musical forces;  he lets  hip hop live next to a Cuban version of French eric satie’s gnossienne #3 ;  and the New Orleans stalwart iko iko holds its place next to the oracular title track.  stellar musicians include vijay iyer, jason lindner, edmar castaneda, donald harrison, antonio lizano, dj logic.  vivid.

kristen miranda.  double time.  sbk.  Second release from  LA -based vocalist has some charming cues.  Her producer bud spangler looks for new ways with standards;  joe gilman + scott collard, keyboards;  rick lotter@ drums;  steve homan, guitar; tom peron, trumpet, john wiitala, bass;

jc styles blakey grease.  american showplace.  Keeping the flame of art blakey bright, guitarist jc styles ( aka jason campbell from North Queensland, Australia) leads his organ quintet through the greatest hits:  troy roberts, tenor;  david lee jones, alto;  kyle koehler, B-3;  lawrence leather, drums.

peter brendler.  outside the line.  posi-tone.  Debut release from NYC bassist;  great colleagues, rich perry, tenor, + peter evans, trumpet & piccolo + vinnie sperrazza@drums give chestnuts like walk on the wild side new zip.  originals rock too.

jared gold.  jg3+.  posi-tone.  NYC B-3 organist delivers an eclectic jazz playlist with his a-list ensemble:  guitar gadfly dave stryker –who has worked with gold since 2004;  sylvia cuenca@drums;  + horn stable:  patrick cornelius, alto; jason marshall, bari;  tatum greenblatt, trumpet.

mark buselli.  untold stories.  OA2.  Nuanced trumpeter leads his group thru all originals + one ellington (angelica).  Indianapolis based, educator @ Ball State University, buselli honors an earlier collaborator, the late pianist claude sifferlenin.  band rounds out with steve allee, piano; danny walsh, saxes; jeremy allen, bass; steve houghton@drums.

clayton-hamilton orchestra.  chjo.  capri.   Superb LA big band, led by troika– bassist john clayton, drummer jeff hamilton, altoist jeff clayton in a live performance @ the alvas showroom in San Pedro, CA.  extra mellow vocals from ernie andrews + barbara morrison;  remarkable solos from graham dechter, guitar #10; pianist tamir hendelman;  tenors rickey woodard & charles owens — cville’s own???

thom douvanbrother brother.  self.  Musical memories from his day (1980’s & forward) as guitarist for the funk brothers shape this Detroit-based songlist;   luther v,  under-appreciated donny hathaway, marvin gaye, bobby womack and the other brothers, isley.  much B-3 throughout– jazz flavor of the moment.

lenny marcus trio.  second set.  blackwater.  Excellent pianist driving his grand  through a playlist of  mostly originals.  Mentored by ray bryant, marcus and his  trio ( rick eckberg, bass;  larry scot@drums) adds in reed musician tom artwick and percussionist vladimir espinosa.  appearing june 14 in Roanoke, Va (where marcus resides) @ montanos.

western free quartet.  free fall.  blujazz.   The resident faculty quartet from Western Michigan University, this version includes andrew rathbun, sax; jeremy siskind, piano;  tom knific, bass;  keith hall, drums.


chicago blues all stars.  red, hot & blue.  azure.  Extensive blues revue that features killer ray allison on guitar & vocals.

rip lee pryor.  nobody but me.  electro-fi.  Son of blues artist snooky pryor,  harmonicat rip lee  plays Chicago-style blues, with bucky berger@drums; and alec fraser on bass.

mark  hummel.  the hustle is really on.  electro-fi.  Another harmonicat, mark hummel,  former leader of the blues survivors, plays here with anson funderburgh, guitar;  little charlie baty, more guitar;  wes star@drums; rw grigsby, bass;  etc.

dudley taft.  screaming in the wind.  self.   Blues nuevo from west coast hard rocker (& sweet water musician) changing musical genres;  core band = john kessler, bass guitar; jason patterson@drums; taft, vocals, guitar—-horns and B-3 join in sometimes.

jazz/blues adds april 23, 2014

charlie hunter & scott amendola.  the cars.  self.  “Hiding” might be the subtitle to this collection of covers.  Our irreverent duo–drummer scott amendola and guitarist charlie hunter –honor their  musical influences:  the cars, hank williams, duke ellington, cole porter.  witty game of “name that tune” –if you can.
dave douglas.  riverside.  greenleaf.  Amazing, understated work from trumpeter dave douglas working at his new home, greenleaf.  perhaps, they began with ideas of jimmy giuffre (1921-2008)– reed master/composer/bandleader;  but where they went was joyous, improvised, a jazz home-run.  the “they” are douglas +  elder statesman steve swallow, electric bass;  the Montreal, Canada doxas brothers, chet on clarinet, tenor and jim @ the drums.  twelve-minute grand finale is just that.

omar hakim.  we are one.  OZmosis.  Multi-talented drummer/keyboardist omar hakim  has burnished jazz and pop credentials since the 1970’s: for every madonna, david bowie, nile (CHIC) rodgers,  weather report, sting gig,  there was work with marcus miller, miles davis, mike manieri and hakim’s  trio of OZ with pianist rachel Z who appears here.  Crafted third solo album– in 14 years;  adventurous jazz fusion band includes great guitar from chieli minucci; tenor by bobby fracheschini;  jerry brooks, bass;  synths, rachel z. + scott tibbs.

joe beck.  get me joe beck.  whaling city sound.  This man, joe beck (1945-2008), said the guitar is a six piece band;  his gift, on this posthumous release, is to take the familiar and surprise you– for example, a nine-minute manha de carnaval.  actually, he’s not afraid of long or the jazz standard.  trio rounds out with peter barshay on bass;  david rokeach @ drums;  soft spot in my heart for  coastal town No. Dartmouth, MA (near New Bedford) where  whaling city sound originates

eric alexander.  chicago fire.  highnote.  Tenor eric alexander leads an energetic quartet –harold mabern (alexander’s mentor), piano;  john webber, bass;  joe farnsworth @ drums –with trumpeter jeremy pelt  guesting.  playlist and performances celebrate Chicago heros– von freeman, johnny griffin, eddie harris, charles earland, sonny stitt.
yard byard: the jaki byard project.  inch by inch.  GM.  Following the metaphor,  the jb project consists of five musicians–none of them pianists–who played with jazz legend/pianist jaki byard:  jamie baum, flute, alto;  adam kolker, tenor, clarinets;  jerome harris, guitar;  ugonna okegwo, bass;  george schuller @ drums.  all byard compostions, newly arranged by band members, the setlist numbers twelve.  project=very intellectual, and humbled before the great man– i greatly missed byard’s unpredictable playing, and melodic piano .
louis armstrong.  live in amsterdam:  1959.  solar.  Exuberant louis armstrong performing at the Amsterdam Concertgebouw hall in 1959 a few months before the heart attack that subdued his European touring;  trummy young on trombone, peanuts hucko on clarinet, billy kyle at the piano, mort herbert, bass, danny barcelona@ drums.  just enjoy;  it’s a delight.
manhattan school of music/afro-cuban jazz orchestra.  que viva harlem.  jazzheads.  Memories of the musical intersection of east (Spanish) and west (black) Harlem get a dramatic treatment from the MSM jazz orchestra, directed by timbales master bobby sanabria.  kudos to the  many soloists, especially alto patrick bartley, this virtuostic recording is a fine calling card for the  MSM afro-cuban program.
eric reed.  the adventurous monk.  savant.  Dedicated to cedar walton (1934-2013), music by thelonious.  pianist eric reed is on a monk mission,  this cd, his third compositions by monk playlist, is not about tribute by imitation but rather deep diving into the timeless core of essential monk.  sidemen shine:  seamus blake, tenor;  ben williams, bass;  gregory hutchinson @ drums.
jazzbonez.  watch it.  summit.   Founded in 2006, jazzbonez is a stellar trombone ensemble from UT @ Austin;  five  tenor trombones + one bass trombone, &  four piece rhythm section.  award-winning, polished, engaging playlist.
oran etkins.  gathering light.  motema.   In my next life, i want to come back as a music producer for motema--continuing their work, that is both elegant and hearty.  israeli clarinetist, oran etkins, frames his  globe-trotting playlist with tales of found pieces of music…Israel (his birthplace), Indonesia, China.  A-list band:  etkins on clarinets, tenor;  ben allison, bass;  curtis fowlkes, trombone;  lionel loueke, guitar, vocal;  dynamic nasheet waits @ drums.

the nels cline singers.  macroscope.  mack avenue.  I have never achieved lift-off with this group, though individually –scott amendola, trevor dunn, cyro baptista– i follow their work.  the author, guitarist /composer nels cline wanders the extra-terrestrial route, away from the known–and i am lost.  probably i need to listen more;  the faithful, of which there are many, will find this and worship.

billy brandt.  the ballad of larry’s neighbor. self.  Seattle-based, singer-songwriter brandt gets great assistance from Pacific Northwest vocalists– the duets shine;  check out josephine howard on house of grace & daddy don’t leave, + carrie wicks on an expanded route 66.   (a popular performing name this billy brandt is not to be confused with America’s #1 porn star nor a crusty Detroit-based roots/country singer.)


iguanas.  juarez.  piety street.   the fortunate could have heard this mighty band on the streets of New Orleans french quarter sunday, april 13.   if you weren’t there, this rhythmic gumbo does the trick.  wit, chops & compositional skills from a seasoned  group that loves to push sonic borders.

major and the monbacks.  monback house party.  self.  Norfolk, Va-based nine member party band boasts multiple guitars, percussion, horns.  Their set list runs the gamut from pop to  r&b to soul to blues to sky’s the limit.

john mayall.  a special life.   forty below.  Turning eighty, British bluesman john mayall has produced a gorgeous, personal studio recording, his first in five years;  new band includes rocky athas, guitar;  greg rzab, bass guitar/percussion;  jay davenport @ drums;  + c.j.chenier guesting with his accordion.  mostly originals with a nod to albert king and sonny landreth.

terry hanck band.  gotta bring it on home to you.  delta groove.  Intrepid surfer in a earlier life, tenor/singer/songwriter terry hanck & his men keep the East Bay, Ca.  blues clubs dancing.  Mostly originals playlist.

jazz /blues adds april 15, 2014


vijay iyer.  mutations.  ecm.  Gorgeous experiments from pianist/composer vijay iyer working with a string quartet and electronica.   recording is divided between 40 minute  suite-like mutations with strings, and solo piano reveries from earlier jazz trio work.  nods to philip glass;  stately elegance, categorically, perhaps crossover  “wet ink” classical music.

the bad plus.  the rite of spring.  masterworks.  More windows into classical music from jazz talent.  the bad plus trio–reid anderson, bass; ethan iverson, piano;  david king, drums–brings on igor stravinsky’s the rite of spring.  complete and with all the barn-burning intensity of the 1913 original.

regina carter.  southern comfort.  masterworks.  Bright, authentic arrangements  from the songbook of  American Creole and Appalachia;  the artist is Detroit-native, classically trained violinist regina carter looking deeply into the roots music of her ancestors.  all hits, from dennis mcgee’s blues de basile to gram parsons hickory wind.  the superb band–marvin sewell, jesse murphy, chris lightcap, will holshouser– shine modest beauty on the traditional song arrangements by a dozen different artists.

oscar peterson/ ben webster.  during this time.  NDR.  A cd/dvd combination featuring jazz giants pianist oscar peterson and tenor ben webster recorded  in Hannover, Germany at the NDR Jazz workshop, december 1972, just months before webster passed away in Amsterdam.  niels-henning orsted pedersen on bass, tony inzalaco at the drums;  seasoned quartet playing ellington classics, and webster originals.

marcus robertsfrom rags to rhythm.  j-master.  Twelve movement suite from New Orleans pianist marcus robert and trio:  rodney jordan, bass and jason marsalis, drums.  Ambitious, stirring, elegant, crossover music—plays better in its entirety, or as multi-segments than plucking out individual cues.

eric vloeimansnorth sea jazz legendary concerts.  bob city.   No one plays trumpet llike eric vloeimans–risky, tender, controlled, captain of the ship.  what we have here are cd + dvd.  cd includes fugimundi concert (Rotterdam)   with harmen fraanje, piano and anton goudsmit on guitar;    plus gatecrash show (Rotterdam) with jasper van hulten, drums; jeroen van vliet, fender;  gulli gudmundsson, bass.  but the dvd has many golden nuggets that deserve cd release in their own right.  rumor says vloeimans returns to Cville  fall, 2014.

mark egan.  about now.  wavetone.  Loved this;  trio led by bass guitarist mark egan with outstanding pianist mitchell forman and drummer danny gottlieb.  all originals;  often with the pat metheny group, egan has played with the many and mighty.

pete mcguinness.   strength in numbers.  summit.  Trombonist/arranger/vocalist pete mcguinness directs his jazz orchestra through a graceful playlist of mostly originals;  strong musicianship from what is primarily a woodwind & horn ensemble, and they swing.

charlie dennard.  from brazil to new orleans.  self.  Multi-keyboardist, composer, cirque de soleil musical director, charlie dennard loves his hometown new orleans, but believes that NoLa and Brazil  have musical affinities.  playlist includes luiz gonzaga’s asa branca, and many accordion-friendly  cues.  doug belote, drums;  brian seeger, guitar;  matt perrine, bass; steve masakowski, 7-string guitar.

david hazeltime.  for all we know.  smoke sessions.   Veteran jazz pianist david hazeltine tributes his influences with a stellar quartet:  seamus blake, tenor;  david williams, bass;  joe farnsworth, drums.   et cedra and my ship are dedicated to cedar walton;  eddie harris to that man;  cheryl to charie parker;

john la barbera.  caravan.  jazz compass.  Excellent arrangements from arranger/leader john la barbera for his big band.  originals and others playlist;  stand-outs include kenny barron’s voyage, jao bosco’s incompatible.

mo’fone.  ‘fonology.  self.  Bay Area funky jazz trio has invited guests to help them stir some New Orleans into their blistering sound.  the core– jeremy steinholer ( drums) + larry de la cruz (sax) + jim peterson (more sax, percussion)– adds in kirk joseph on sousaphone, marty wehner, trombone to their originals playlist.


kenny “blues boss”  wayne.  rollin ‘with the blues boss.  stony plain.  Boogie woogie piano man/ vocalist kenny wayne, native of New Orleans, has taken his blues stride to Canada where he “cooks” in the clubs of Vancouver.  guests on this  recording include eric bibb and diunna  greenleaf.

josh hoyer.  and the shadowboxers.  self.  Out of the heartland, Lincoln, NE comes vocalist josh hoyer with an originals setlist, a six piece r&b/soul/funk band with a female vocals trio.  it’s a big, demanding sound;  more action from the kickstarter musical universe.

lil’ronnie & the bluebeats with claudia carawan.  unfinished business.  ellersoul.  Harmonicat ronnie owens joins with gospel vocalist claudia carawan and many other blues musicians to finish the work  of songwriting they started  back in the 1990’s.

blues mix 13.  grown folks soul.  ecko.  Soul compilations that includes ms. jody, donnie ray, sony mack, o.b. buchana.

jazz/blues adds april 1, 2014


monty alexander.  harlem-kingston express, vol.2:  the river rolls on.  motema.  Joyous and heartfelt  interpretations by legendary pianist monty alexander as he unveils drama, lightness and the political in Jamaican music that has shaped him.  personnel include –obed calvaire @ drums & vocalists caterina zapponi (mrs. a.) & wendel ferraro, plus veterans:  hassan shakur, bass;  courtney panton, percusssion;  andy bassford, guitar.   nothing bad here,   trust every cue;  another luscious motema production.

charlie hunter.  pucker.  sazi.  Lean, dreamy duets from WTJU favorite–the drum/7-string guitar team of scott amendola and charlie hunter, with amendola doing the writing.  an attitude of good times, keen wit, and two men doing the work of ten at this session.

jason kao kwang.  burning bridge.  innova.  Chinese-American jazz violinist  improvising with stellar octet, that mixes Western horns with Asian strings (pipa, erhu).  long, drifting cues:  joseph daley, tuba;  steve swell, trombone;   taylor ho bynum, cornet;  ken filiano, sun li, wang guowei–on strings; andrew drury, drums.

adam kromelowkrom.  self.  Discover this!  Muscular, genre-bending, tuneful trio work led by sensational pianist adam kromelow.  he came from chicago, studied at Manhattan School for Music with jason moran, vijay iyer; uniquely confident with a playlist of originals.  bassist raviv markovitz and percussionist jason burger–no slouches–make this trio reach the musical stars.

marcus robertsfrom rags to rhythm.  j-master.  Twelve movement suite from New Orleans pianist marcus robert and trio:  rodney jordan, bass and jason marsalis, drums.  Ambitious, stirring, elegant, crossover music—plays better in its entirety, or as multi-segments than plucking out individual cues.

bill banfield.  playing with other people’s heads:  songs.  sugo.  Out of Boston’s South End comes bill banfield’s collective, jazz urbane, a gigging ensemble dedicated to breathing  roots, r&b, soul, spoken word into contemporary jazz performance.  much care taken with the vocals, guest soloists;  banfield, guitar and composition, always.

jeff hackwork.  soul to go.  big bridge.  Classic organ quartet led by NYC tenor jeff hackworth;  ed cherry on guitar, vince ector, drums, and radam schwartz at the B-3.  playlist mixes the old and the original.

steve fidyk.  heads up!. posi-tone.  Drummer/educator (Temple University) steve fidyk performs mostly originals with his quintet:  terell stafford on horns; tim warfield, tenor;  shawn purcell, guitar; regan brough, bass.

matthew kaminski.  swingin on the new hammond.  chicken coop.  He’s the Atlanta Braves organist!  new release showcases some classic B-3 gems– she by charles aznavour, and turn to stone.  justin varnes on drums, and the singular voice on dave stryker on guitar.

dave chamberlain’s band of bonescaravan.  self.  In that bag of (trom)bones there are eight including leader dave chamberlain. plus multi-octave vocalist kat gang, kenny asher @ piano; mike campenni + chembo corneil on percussions,  jerry devore, bass.  Swinging, smooth, classic playlist with rhythmic arrangements by chamberlain.

david bromberg.  forth & back.  cap.  Originally from a Tucson, AZ musical famly, drummer bromberg works in NYC, & his debut recording includes bassist, christian fabian; reed man, bill vint;  keyboardist, steve hunt.  all originals playlist.


jones family singers.  the spirit speaks.  arts+labor.   Three generation gospel collective that incorporates soul, r & b into contemporary church music.

lisa mann.  move on.  self.   West Virginia native, lisa mann sings with gusto and plays bass;  having explored genres from “Metal to Memphis”, here she gathers a team of Pacific Northwest blues musicians.

wildcat o’halloran.  party up in heaven.  self.   Blues-ing in Western Massachusetts ( Northhampton), wildcat  writes, sings, and plays guitar.

core band fleshed out with many guest “angels” for the party.  ballad “crossing off” inflects a chris smithers influence, nicely.

christian collin.  american art.  c-train. Singer/songwriter/guitarist dedicated to roots music but willing to blend in many tangents–soul, country, folk.  core band of bass, drums, keys  folds in generous horn section.

jazz/blues adds march 25, 2014


mike longo.  step on it. cap.  Outstanding trio led by pianist mike longo includes bob cranshw on bass and lewis nash on drums.  playlist covers the who’s who of jazz classics:  weill’s my ship; herbie’s cantaloupe island; a trio of wayne shorter famous titles; and a deep, throaty poinciana.

tom tallitsch.  ride.  posi-tone.  This band, led by tenor ted tallitsch, throws a forceful harmonic net over each cue–whether covering led zeppelin’s ten years gone, or  exploring tallitsch’s original compositions.  stellar partners are:  rudy royston, drums;  michael dease, trombone; art hirahara, piano;  peter brendler, bass.

eddie allen.  push.  edjalen music 505.   New York trumpeter  eddie allen leads a smooth septet with double keyboards, a trio of horns, bass & drums.  nearly all originals setlist;  keith loftis, don tucker, misha tsiganov, kenny davis, ej strickland.

antonio adolfo.  rio, choro, jazz.  aam.  Tribute to Brazilian composer, ernesto nazareth (1863-1934), inventor of the choro, a musical style and dance form, unique to Rio is produced by pianist/musicologist antonio adolfo.  other musicians are claudio spiewak, guitar;  jorge helder, bass; marcelo martins, rafael barata, marcos suzano.

yossi tamim.  one movement.  self.   Jazz & string quartet merge for all originals playlist.  Israeli guitarist/composer yossi tamim draws from Jewish songs, classical  & traditional works for his meditative, crossover recording.  jim ridl, tim horner, tom dicarlo + wende namkung, hector falcon, liuh-wen ting, rubin kodheli.

belle plaine.  notes from a waitress.  13th ave.  A donation from peter jones /wtju folk department;  belle plaine, aka melanie hankewich, uber- prairie girl from Canada  has traveled widely burnishing her songwriting and vocal skills– australia, victoria, alberta, etc.  her originals (with pianist jeremy sauer) playlist nods to tom waits and peggy lee.  all emotions seem happily available to her, with confidence.

various.  the beatles jazz tribute.  highnote.  Beatles tributes from the highnote  label roster:  sheila jordan on little blackbird;  norman simmons on eleanor rigby;  larry coryell with something;  and a trio of covers by guitarist joel harrison.

jeremy wilms.  diamond people. self.   Very DTY production:  music is sturdy, but no accurate musician or compostional credits.  guitarist wilms has been toiling in the jazz fields forever– played with many–most recently on tour with the bill t. jones broadway show of fela.  playlist feels original.

terrence brewer.  mosaic: setting the standard, volume two. strong brew.  San Fran, CA. guitarist  brewer is not shy about his love for the music of wes montgomery.  Standards playlist interpretated by  jarrett cherner–piano;  gabe davis, bass;  lorca hart, drums.  FYI:  this disc would not play for me, literally.

native jazz quartet.  njq:  stories.  cap.  The hook here is native melodies representing musical communities far and wide:  drummer ed littlefield  comes from the Tlingit people of SE Alaska;  vibist jason marsalis from the rich Creole tradition of New Orleans;  pianist reuel lubag brings Filipino folk songs;  bassist christian fabian, anthemic music from the Swedish-German axis.

brian charette.  square one.  posi-tone.  Grammy-nominated, and “one of the best of the new breed of B-3 players–downbeat“,  organist brian charette works with yotam silberstein on guitar, mark ferber on drums in this high energy, mostly originals release.

marc seales.  american songs, vol.2: blues …and jazz.  origin.   Northwest pianist/educator/ composer seales revisits the elmo hope bop tradition, though with more fret members:  fred hamilton on guitar;  jeff johnson & dave captein sharing the double & electric bass duties;  and gary hobbs on drums.  polished.

rachel eckroth.  let go.  virgo sun.  Triple threat:  Brooklyn-based pianist/composer with gorgeous vocal talent.  originals, eclectic arrangements.

leslie pintchik.  in the nature of things.   pintch hard.  Fourth release from former Columbia University literature professor, now jazz pianist/composer pintchik working with regular bassist scott hardy + horn chorus– steve wilson on tenor, ron horton on trumpet, and double percussion from michael sarin and satoshi takeishi.  originals, nearly all.


arthur migliazza.  laying it down.  hobemian.   Blues and boogie woogie pianist arthur migliazza plays originals, fats domino, louis prima, a.ammons + more.  many co-stars on the band–harmonicats, fiddler, percussion and drums, deep  & electric string.  on the heels of his very successful tour in Russia where they love to boogie.

johnny cox.  thin blue line.   self.   Eleven original songs from blues vocalist/guitartist johnny cox who emigrated from Scotland in 1985 to Canada so as to get closer to the blues source.  band features ansgar schroer on the lesser-known, but truly fine,  chromatic harmonica.

ray fuller & bluesrockers.  live @ buddy’s guy’s legends.  azuretone.  ” an unstoppable force of rockin blues energy”, guitarist/vocalist/now-slide-guitar  ray fuller has been around and learned from the masters.  when he’s not touring, he’s playing with the boys at buddy guy’s esteemed Chicago club legends where this cd was recorded live.

the holmes brothers.  brotherhood.   alligator.   Juke joint and the church are both praised in the dozen recordings sherman and wendall holmes have made since beginning (1979) and leaving Christchurch, Va for blues venues of New York City.  good stuff , some with catherine russell on vocals;  sherman on bass; wendell on electric guitar, popsy dixon, drums, many guests.

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jazz /blues adds march 19,2014


eric vloeiman.  oliver’s cinema.  northstar.   Our man in Holland, eric vloeiman, has gone a wandering and found himself  some new co-stars:  German cellist, jorg brunkman, and Belgian accordionist , tuur florizoone.  is there anyone who knows how to play soft, better than vloeiman? so, no surprise that he found a subtle squeezebox player.    all the while “agile & pert”–e.v.   and I am, shamelessly, persuaded that a playlist with movie themes is la creme of listening.

ambrose akinmusire.  the imagined savior is far easier to paint.  blue note. Title(s) aside, wade into young trumpeter akinmusire’s  second cd, featuring regular bandmates:  walter smith, tenor; harish raghaven, bass; justin brown, drums.  new members–pianist sam harris and vocalists– becca stevens, cold specks, theo bleckmann–jump the originals playlist out of the ordinary.

lisa hilton.  kaleidoscope.  self.  LA classically trained jazz pianist hilton with a great quartet– tenor j.d. allen;  larry grenadier, bass; marcus gilmore, drums– working  a spirited playlist, many originals.  Gorgeous playing, highly impressionistic–every instrumental voice sharing the spotlight.
da lata.  fabiola.  agogo.  Strings, kora & trombones, bound together by Bahian samba drums that would make Olodum proud,  Londoners chris franck & patrick forge first recorded da lata in 1994–as Afro-Brazilian house/dance/jam band.  10 years later, from the studio, their dedication continues.  international guest vocalists:  Cape Verdean mayra andrade; jandira silva, dennis rollins, luisa maita;  steaming arrangements.  stop, look and LISTEN.
fareed haque.  trance hypothesis.  delmark.  Chicago fusion guitarist (via Chile & Pakistan) fareed haque working with his fat earth ensemble brings the tabla (shivalik ghoshal) , oud (essam rafea) & sitar (indrajit banerjee)  into a large jazz group that also includes the B-3 (tony monaco).    Indian cues shine:  hymn of the ancients, saba, sristi, and title track.
billy hart quartet.  one is the other.  ecm.    Seventy-three year old drummer billy hart brings multi-genre-ed jazz experience to his young bloods quartet:   elegant pianist ethan iverson and resourceful tenor mark turner share the lyrical moments as ben street on bass, and leader/composer hart keep time, energy and line.
ian carey + ben stolorow.  duocracy.  kabocha.  Trumpet/piano duo take on the American songbook looking for simplicity and sophistication.  loved playlist selections, especially two for the road.
barbara martin + vince lewis.  fresh air.  vinbara.  Locals– vocalist (martin), guitar (lewis), bassist (paul langosch)–settle into an acoustic playlist of originals and freshly interpreted standards.  recorded at the packing shed, Lovingston, VA.
adam rongo.  tell your story.  d:clef.  Debut cd from Michigan-native, alto/tenor player rongo draws on favorite classics and originals;  core band includes michael dease (rongo’s mentor) on trombone;  ulysses owens jr, drums;  rodney whitaker, bass; emmet cohen, piano  + etienne charles, behn gillece, randy napoleon.
mr. confuse.  do you realize.  legere.   Hanover, Germany dj and music producer generates funk & message in 2012 release.  dance tracks, mixed with political anthems,   lots of guest vocalists– dan salem, lady emz, elaine thomas.  a curious window into the universe of European music trends where America’s groove past provides the engine.
the pepper pots.  we must fight.  double back.  Old school soul from Girona, Catalonia (near Barcelona), Spain;  8 guys, 2 women, 10 years, , 6 cds, 400 shows.  not exactly the supremes‘ vocal complexity, or motown‘s song writing chops, but positive politics for the young is a philosophical +.  please visit here.
legere samplervarious.  legere.  more to tempt you from the gang that gets out the funk.  sampler includes artists, new to us;  bridget cooper, the impellers, kerbside collection, pitch & scratch.
terry quiett. taking sides.  lucky bag.  Coming out of Witchita, Kansas, TQB consists of singer/songwriter/guitarist terry quiet; bass player nathan johnson, rodney baker on drums plus guests:  Mississippi hal reed, blues harp;  brad turgeon + jordan northerns, horns;  scott williams, keyboards.
terry davidson & the gears.   sonic soul sessions.  bangshift.   The gears, out of Ohio,  have been blues-ing for almost 3 decades:  terry davidson– guitar, mandolin,vocals;  bill geist–guitar, percussion;  bob hanners–drums;  mike gilliland, harmonica, guitar.  guests, original playlist
tess barr.  do what you want.  barbarian.  All originals playlist  from Pacific Northwest-based exuberant blues singer/songwriter;  the core band includes barr on vocals/guitar;  patrik barr, slide guitar;  paul viemeister, bass guitar;  cheo larcombe, drums.
john lyons.  sing me another song.  self.   Michigan-born, Switzerland-resident, blues man john lyons  tells a story of lost loves in his new cd;  European band includes simon britschgi–drums; matthew savnik– keys;  gabriel spahni–bass;  lyons–vocals/guitar/composition.

jazz/blues adds march 11, 2014


snarky puppy.  we like it here.  ropeadope.  New–  from the “puppy”– comes with advance praise from dj tim schwarz across the Asian pond in Singapore.  though recorded @ kytopia studios in Utrecht, NL, bassist michael league’s liner notes tell a story of 7 years American toil followed by a blazing european tour.  no two cues are alike, and it’s a big puppy: 20-40 musicians in the collective.  the puppy got its start @ UT in Denton TX, now based in Brooklyn.

revolutionary snake ensemble.  live snakes. accurate.  Boston-based musicians, led by reed master ken field, the snakes do well with their mardi gras inspired tribute to filmmaker karen aqua  (who was field’s wife).  the center piece is the free jazz for karen which flows into i’ll fly away, classic NoLa funeral stuff.  lots and lots of horns;  rest are rhythm.

bahama soul club.   the cuban tapes.  buy-u.  Club music inspired by classic film, I am Cuba (mikhail kalatozov, 1964), produced by the German studio of olivier belz & andre neundorf.  new Cuban voices–telmary, arema arega, danay suarwez plus tracks of bessie smith, ruthie foster.  eddie filipp, drums;  horns:  york, kervin barreto.  infectious.

gene ludwig-pat martino trio.  young guns.  highnote.  Rich organ-guitar-drums trio from 1968-69.  pat martino on guitar;  Pittsburgh pretender to the throne of jimmy smith, gene ludwig at the organ and Ohio drummer randy gillespie have at it.  long,  mellow and fiery, cues set a very high barre;  the trio would be around for only 2 years.  if you like the B-3, & jazz guitar–martino and ludwig together, can’ t stop the fever.
bruce barth.  daybreak.  savant.  Vibes and piano, trumpet, bass & drums-that’s the lineup:  barth, piano & leader;  steve nelson,vibes;  terell stafford, horns;  vicente archer and montez coleman keep the rhythm.  classically trained, on his 13th recording, barth explores the bop /post-bop piano of his teacher jaki byard.
organic trio.  home remembered.  uno.  More from New Orleans.  jazz guitarist brian seeger, hammond B-3, organist jean-yves jung, and drummer paul wiltgen celebrate their European tour’s conclusion with this all originals cd.  produced by the music department @ university of new orleans.
cindy scott.  historia.  catahoula.  New Orleans vocalist cindy scott with jazz chops and a soft bluesy purr.  eclectic, never boring, playlist;  solid band–randy porter, piano;  dan loomis, bass;  jamison ross, drums + guest vocalistt karrin allyson, & local hero brian seeger (see above).
david “fathead” newman.  cellar groove with tilden webb trio.  cellar live.  Precious cargo from the archives of the late Cellar Jazz club;   2004, music legend newman (1933-2009) played this Vancouver gig with verve and maturity– duke pearson’ cristo redentor, pure poetry.
with tilden webb @ the piano;  jodi proznick, bass;  jesse cahill drums.
mike allen quartet with hugh fraser.  panorama.  cellar live.  West-coast classic jazz ensemble with all originals playlist:  leader/tenor/soprano mike allen added in hugh fraser’s trombone to his Vancouver-based group:  miles black, piano;  adam thomas, bass;  julian macdonough, drums.  finely-tuned jazz  from cory weeds’ cellar live catalog.
fat thumbs ronnie time to shine.  legere.  Unity Sextet piano wizard fat thumbs ronnie celebrates all things keyboard-esque and synthesized.  playlist is cast on a slight frame, perhaps a film narrative, or a novel;  think mood not details, but always those sound effects telling you to sit back relax and enjoy the drive.
new mastersounds.  therapy.  legere.  Funky-ambient with tangents of soul, and a hypnotic-house beat that creeps into retro styling.  band came out of Leeds, England, now multi-national; eddie roberts, simon allen, joe tatton, peter shand=instrumentalists, kim dawson, vocals.
the funky mamas.  funky mama.  goodfellas.  the funky mamas are not only guys but they are originally from southern Italy;  funk, with a big badass horn section is what they play.  long nighttime cues.

smokewagon blues band.  live in hamilton.  indie pool/canada.   Smokewagon– led by vocalist/harmonicat corey lueck– spotlights the blues scene in Hamilton, Ontario with their live recording.  though most cues really roll and move, nothing is as good as their # 1, a cover of bill withers’ ain’t no sunshine.  great  sax– gordon aeichele;  bass, jason colvecchia;  drums, tibor lukacs;  piano, nick succi;  and guitar, mike stubbs.
nick moss  band.  time ain’t free.  blue bella.  Blues guitarist/harmonicat from Chicago takes on 70’s rock & rock with an R&B twist;  lots of good in this batch;  excellent keys from bryan rogers;  drums, patrick seals;  michael ledbetter, guitar, composition;  matthew wilson, bass.
johnny drummer.  bad attitude.  earwig.  Original, slightly goofy tunes, from Chicago blues man self-named because at the time he played the drums;  now, he sings, plays organ, harmonica, writes.  Good band, excellent arrangements.
patti parks.  cheat ‘n man.  self.  Seasoned blues band from Buffalo, NY, parks writes her own stuff,, sings with gusto and takes her blues invasion into soul, R&B, and even a little gospel.  stellar horn section led by gerry youngman, nick salamone, paul vanacore.

jazz/blues adds march 4, 2014


norma winstone.  dance without answerecm.  Art-song goddess winstone takes her time and her method with a song;   her fourth collaboration with German clarinetist/soprano sax klaus gesing and  Italian pianist glauco venier is as pristinely harmonic as 2008’s distances.  in this batch of tunes, vocalist winstone applies her  spare lyrics to originals and covers some beauties.

kate mcgarry and keith ganz.  genevieve & ferdinand.  sunnyside.  Duets between husband and wife: vocalist mcgarry  & guitarist ganz deliver the best of past and forward singer-songwriter expessions.  songs not-so-known gleam from their playlist, among them devon sproule’s plea for a good night’s rest, and her partner, paul curreri’s beneath a crozet trestle bridge.  exquisite seems correct.

the unity sextet.  eponymous.  legere.  Good to the very last cue.  Analysis: dedicated to the power of the instrumental, looking to Horace Silver bop-riffs as well as Parisian jazz, circa 1960’s, but don’t forget the Now.  Racing, dancing;  everybody in, everybody out.  Fun and joy.the boys from SW England ( Exeter) include buddy franco, junior oliver; fat thumbs ronnie, cassius farqhuar, chuck wadron, fats young jr.

caroline lacaze en route.  legere.  Remembering the sounds of French chanteuse, francoise hardy and music of serge gainsbourg,  vocalist lacaze debuts with a message of originals and vivd retro style.  bandmates are the superb mocambo sound electric orchestra.  compositions by bjorn wagner.
nick pride and the pimp tones.  rejuiced phat shake.  legere.  Three for three from the Hamburg, Germany legere label, nick pride+ hails from Newcastle, drives a similar musical bus to  sharon jones & co.–vocalist featured–but drops easily into funky/deep jazz instrumental edges.  pride on guitar; oscar cassidy, drums;  ian paterson, bass;  keith nicholson, trumpet; tom quilliam, saxophone.

kris bowers.  heroes + misfits.  concord.  Classically trained jazz pianist, winner of the 2011 monk competition, kris bowers’  thoughtful, high energy cd celebrates what shaped him:   music conservatory, hip-hop; LA;  the deep past of jazz, blues and soul.  young, brave, and connected-up to other risk-taking musicians;  bowers on piano, the fender, synthies;  casey benjamin, alto; kenneth whalum II, tenor; adam agate, guitar; jamire williams, drums.

brad mehldau & mark guiliana.  mehliana: taming the dragon.  nonesuch.  Nothing familiar in these duets from brad mehldau, formerly of  art of the trio format and  mark guiliana, drummer with beat music.   welcome to the universe of electronics, lots of swirl, buzz;  Mr. Fender is front and center, Mr. Steinway, tucked in the closet.  the dragon to be tamed, his name is electricity.

jacques schwarz-bart.  jazz racine haiti.  motema.   Modern jazz and Haitian ritual music find each other in tenor sax/composer jacques schwarz-bart’s revelatory cd.   raised by writers–Guadeloupan novelist simone schwarz-bart and french journalist andre schwarz-bart, jacques was destined for the halls of Parisian politics when he made an abrupt turn into the arms of Berklee School of Music.  his strong path led to this daunting, but gorgeous, exploration of voodoo music.  with etienne charles, trumpet;  obed calvaire, drums;  reggie washington, bass,, gregory privat, piano + guests.

adam smale.  out of the blue.  self.  US  debut from Toronto 7-string finger-style guitar master adam smale who plays with authority and technique:  mostly originals playlist, quartet setting.

pete robbins.  pyramind.  self.  Alto player peter robbins fronts a classic trio with extraordinary musicians:  the deliberate vijay iyer on piano, eivind opsvik on bass, tyshawn sorey on drums.  originals and covers that range from witchita lineman— that’s a popular cover these days– to pop gold in nirvana’s  lithium and guns ‘n roses’ pyramid.

javon jackson.  expressions.  smoke sessions.  Polished, elegant playlist from tenor javon jackson who has played with everyone –as a youngster, one of art blakey’s messengers; then with the incomparable elvin jones, later with freddie hubbard.  all that schoolin’ shows:  orrin evans, piano; corcoran hold, bass;  mcclenty hunter, drums.

shawn maxwellalliance.  chicago sessions.  Chicago multi-insstrumentalist shawn maxwell shows off his compositional skills in this “suite for ten:   2 french horns,  2 basses, guitar, soprano sax, drums , vibes, voice, + all the reeds maxwell plays.  shorties, tone poems–aiming for a mood on the free jazz side.


markiss blowfish.  come along with me.  self.   Neighboring bluesman from Richmond, mark branch–aka, markiss blowfish;   singer, songwriter branch plays with bassist chuck kerwath, and winston gravely on percussion.

bernie pearl.  take your time bee bump.  Fantastic trip to the old days with guitarist (sometimes lap steel) vocalist bernie pearl, his versatile band, and duet partner, vocalist barbara morrison.  so many tunes to love:  the bible and blues set;  a Mississippi raga, and irreverence from my new compositional hero,  mance lipscomb.

lisa biales.  belle of the blues.  big song.  Strong sultry voice, gorgeously produced blues from the “belle of the blues.”  band shines– includes paul hornsby, piano;  bill stewart, drums;  tommy talton, dobro & e.g. kight, guitar;  randall bramblett, B-3., johnny fountain, bass .

john nemeth.  memphis grease blue corn.  One of the best contemporary blues/soul revivalists showcases his excellent songwriting talents & blues award winning band the bo-keys.  nemeth, plays blues harp, sings, runs his 8-man band as one finely tuned instrument.