SABOYA-ADOLFO-MEURKENS/Copa Village: The best daddy-daughter team in Brazilian jazz hook up with the best harmonica player since Toots Thielemans for a trip back to Copacabana in more innocent times where breezy grooves and scandalous bathing suits were as wild as it got. If you have a taste for Brazilian jazz that goes back to the birth of the bossa nova era, this trio and their pals hit the nail so squarely on the head you have to think the nail hurts. Lovely stuff by practitioners that were to the manner born, it killer stuff throughout that even improves upon the originals. Check it out.
CHRIS BIESTERFELDT/Phineas: Guitarist Biesterfeldt shows he's no one trick pony as the "Sesame Street" guitarist turns his attention to recasting the works of underappreciated pianist Phineas Newborn, Jr. Attacking his guitar like he's working a keyboard, he leads his trio in a mighty solid way that gives this set all the zest of a Bluenote of Verve classic. Killer stuff from a killer guitarist that makes it all look to easy. Well done.
RANDY BRECKER with the DePaul University Jazz Ensemble/Dearborn Station: Something is afoot in Chicago jazz as this is the second set of Bob Lark and his charges to come nearly back to back. With the timeless energy of Jazz Showcase at their back, Brecker inspires the kids and the kids inspire Brecker. First class jazz with modern touches, count on this to be a winner throughout.
JOELLE LURIE/Take Me There: Time marches on. Here we have a downtown take on the modern jazz diva. Adding hip hop vibes to Sinatra? Well, have you seen property prices in Brooklyn lately. Some are going to find this fire cracker to be selling sacrilege but she has a fine voice, crafty ideas and , like I said, time marches on. Dandy millennial cocktail music.
GEORG BREINSCHMID/Double Brein: This has been blossoming right under our noses, in Germany, which is probably why only the heartiest jazzbos are hip to it. A bass ace with a lot to say musically, this double cd reflects his jazz/world sides and his jazz/classical sides. This sounds like so many of the breezy records you've loved over the years that's it's sure to drive you crazy as it wends it's merry way along. Tasty stuff with beautiful packaging, expect this to open your ears in quite a grand way. Check it out.
ROBIN BANKS/Modern Classic: Leave it to Duke Robillard to dig through the wilds of Canada to find a white blues/R&B singer with a name like Robin Banks. All as priceless as the sounds within. The best easy rolling Muscle Shoals sounds since the original crew took off for other pastures, everyone here can take a deep waist bow for creating sounds that Americana should sound like. A winner throughout.
BILL O'CONNELL and the Latin Jazz Allstars/Imagine: Taking a lot of the familiar and making it all new, O'Connell and his crew of hitters add taste and savvy to these jazz and pop tunes making them that special kind of background music with so much more. First class stuff for when you can appreciate something peaceful with some fire, this set can make any time Sunday afternoon. Well done.
KASSE MADY DIABATE/Kirike: Are your ears getting enough kalimba? Malian musical royalty for over 50 from a family of Malian musical royalty, this is top notch, armchair traveler music. Presented spare and simply, all you need are some elephants and giraffes projected on the wall to make this indigenous experience go to the max. State of the art world beat.
LAUREN MECCIA/Inside Your Eyes: A nu jazz diva with art chick overtones, Meccia has the kind of high flying voice that will always keep every thing hot, even when she plays it cool. The debut of a thrush to keep an ear out for, you won't be doing yourself a disservice to get on board now so you can say you were listening to her back in the day. Quite the auspicious debut.
DAVID HELBOCK TRIO/Aural Colors: Somewhere between Raymond Scott, Esquivel and Walter Wanderly lies the work of the merry prankster Helbock and his trio that follows in step. Not at all novelty music, Helbock is a serious player that doesn't take himself seriously and a good time ensues for all. Musical humor in jazz, what a concept! Just right for when you're in the mood for something completely different.
Volume 38/Number 46
December 16, 2014
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2014 Midwest Record
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