Danny Tobias’ Silver Linings is just that – a gracious and warm reminder of how good it is to be alive. Fourteen heartfelt and swinging tunes with originals, standards and some tunes you might not know played by an all-star quintet – Danny on trumpet, flugelhorn and alto horn; Scott Robinson on tenor, trumpet, flute and tarogatol Rossano Sportiello on piano; Joe Plowman on bass; and Kevin Dorn on drums. Silver Linings tells us, as Michael Steinman of Jazz Lives notes, “how good it is to be alive”.
Acclaimed baritone saxophonist Claire leads her band and presents a celebration of the unforgettable multi-instrumentalist Rahsaan Roland Kirk. Says Daly, “He was a unique human, as devoted as he was eccentric.” Claire and her band – Eli Yamin on piano, Dave Hofstra on bass and Peter Grant on drums – play a mix of Kirk’s originals, songs that he performed and originals by the leader, all in the spirit of the irrepressible Rahsaan. Claire also plays flute on two tracks and sings a few surprises!
The Claire Daly Band:
Claire Daly, baritone saxophone, flute, vocals; Eli Yamin, piano; Dave Hofstra, bass; Peter Grant, drums
Dan Rose’s consummate artistry and superb taste are perfectly served in this set of intimate duets with another remarkable musician, Claudine Francois. They work delicate and tasteful wonders on bold, new originals and pointedly chosen covers and demonstrate how true communication and fine listening can create timeless expression.
The quality about Nate Kahn and his music that immediately appeals is that he’s fluent in the vocabularies of a host of different genres and styles but is pinned down by none of them. One listen to this recording will reveal influences as diverse as Steely Dan, jazz fusion, Lynrd Skynrd, horn-driven funk, blues, ballads, bebop and …well… the list goes on. And though Nate is a powerfully talented soloist and composer, the focus in all he does is the communication of the joy of creating and playing music with talented thoughtful players.
A solo guitar hymn to the intimate and lovely romantic songs of
yesteryear. This most inventive and imaginative musician takes on two
hands full of standards – “Body And Soul,” ‘Darn That Dream,” “What’s
New,” “Moonlight in Vermont,” ‘If I Loved You” and six more – plus a
medley of all Ellington tunes and another medley with three more
Singer Ayelet Gottlieb and saxophonist Eric Lawrence play a tribute to the latter’s father – the late, extraordinarily influential saxophonist/ teacher Arnie Lawrence – in this specially-priced two-disc set that features a world of instruments played by the leaders and pianist Anat Fort, and vocals and effects by Gottlieb’s children! The music goes from free improv through electronics to klezmer and more familiar jazz idioms. It celebrates a 1970 recording by Arnie Lawrence.
Alone Together 6:48 (Howard Dietz / Arthur Schwartz)
The Music is the Magic 7:33 (Abbey Lincoln)
Kneel 8:38 (Jeremy Siskind)
Song of Life 4:58 (Norma Winstone / Fred Hersch)
Half Moon 4:44 (words: K. Shank / music: G. Keezer, K. Shank)
Life’s Mosaic 7:31 (John & Paula Hackett / Cedar Walton)
When Love Was You and Me 5:02 (Abbey Lincoln / Thad Jones)
I’m Movin’ On 4:52 (Judy Niemack / Kirk Nurock)
Healing Song 4:33 (words: K. Shank / music: K. Shank, G. Keezer)
You Are There 5:58 (Dave Frishberg / Johnny Mandel)
A Weaver Of Dreams 6:08 (Jack Elliott / Victor Young)
Kendra Shank and Geoffrey Keezer’s musical association began in 2008 at the Athenaeum jazz series in San Diego, CA when a cancelled flight prevented Shank’s New York pianist from making the gig. With just 30 minutes to rehearse, Keezer stepped in with a seamless performance and instant chemistry with Shank that inspired a standing ovation. Kendra called on Geoffrey’s trio for subsequent West Coast tours and their musical connection deepened. In January 2015, while Geoffrey was in Manhattan on an engagement with Chris Botti, he and Kendra performed an afternoon concert at a friend’s home. The intimate duo setting provided the pianist and vocalist unlimited freedom to create spontaneously in the moment, taking the enthusiastic audience on a magical journey that was captured on this Ride Symbol recording. The title song “Half Moon,” inspired by a lamp hanging over the piano, was completely improvised and reveals Shank at her most vulnerable. Keezer’s 88-key orchestra of harmonic and rhythmic virtuosity and Shank’s exotic wordless vocalizations are highlighted in Cedar Walton’s “Life’s Mosaic,” while the duo’s lyrical side shines on the debut recording of Jeremy Siskind’s “Kneel” (winner of ASCAP’s Herb Alpert Young Jazz Composers Award). The chart for “When Love Was You and Me” (Abbey Lincoln/Thad Jones) was given to Kendra in 1994 by her mentor Abbey Lincoln when Kendra visited her Upper West Side apartment — coincidentally in the same building where this concert took place. Throughout this diverse and inspired set, Shank & Keezer embody the joy and playful inventiveness of making music as interactive partners, transcending the singer-accompanist mold.
GEOFFREY KEEZER With his highly regarded discography, unique compositions, and acclaimed performances in a variety of configurations, Grammy-nominated pianist Geoffrey Keezer commands the attention typically reserved for the living legends of jazz. Whether recording with jazz vocalists Diana Krall or Dianne Reeves, touring with trumpet king Chris Botti, or collaborating with pop icon Sting, sax legend Wayne Shorter, guitar wizard Jim Hall, star bassist Christian McBride or vibes master Joe Locke, Geoffrey “has more than enough virtuosity and sheer musical wit and intelligence to weave all of his apparently disparate strands of influence into an original and compelling whole” (Time magazine). His recent release, Heart of the Piano (2013, Motema Records), redefines solo jazz piano as a personal and interactive showcase of melody, energy and groove. Geoffrey Keezer’s singular style of intellectually abstract lyricism woven over exotically complex rhythms and harmonies makes him one of the most sought-after artists on the modern jazz scene. geoffreykeezer.com
KENDRA SHANK Kendra Shank’s 6 critically acclaimed CDs have garnered numerous “Best of the Year” citations and Down Beat poll recognition, with accolades for her “delectable voice” (Time magazine) and “breathtakingly original concept” (Boston Globe). Since her 1992 debut at the Village Vanguard, presented by Shirley Horn, Shank has become a mainstay on New York’s jazz scene, has toured in Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia, Canada and the U.S., and has appeared on NPR’s JazzSet and Marian McPartland’s Piano Jazz. In addition to leading her NY quartet of 16 years with Frank Kimbrough, Dean Johnson, and Tony Moreno, she co-leads a duo with guitarist John Stowell and has performed and/or recorded with Abbey Lincoln, Fred Hersch, Larry Willis, Joe Locke, Jay Clayton, Bob Dorough, Gary Bartz, Steve Wilson, Victor Lewis, Matt Wilson, Ben Monder and many more. Her mix of jazz originals, standards, world music, folk/pop, and open improvisation is unified by her soulful storytelling, inventive phrasing, and spontaneous group interplay. kendrashank.com
Furtive Sex features Joel’s quintet, The Truth, and several of his tunes never recorded before. As Joel says in his liner notes for the record:
Two hundred tunes ago, I showed up at a pre-gig session with a medium swinger called “Claire’s Idea”. A month after, my long-time bari player told me: “You know, Joel, I like that new number…and not just because it was my idea!” What was Claire’s idea? In retrospect, an eminently reasonable one: that I re-name the band. When I’d put Claire and David Hofstra together, we three became The Differents. With Denis Charles added, we were PEOPLE LIKE US. We stayed that way through Denis’s death into periods with the excellent drummers Ronnie Williams and Peter Grant. But from the moment Matt Garrity took the drum chair and Vito Dieterle joined up on tenor, we were truly a different band: younger, more internally-conflicted, ever-so-slightly stranger. We become JOEL FORRESTER & THE TRUTH; I often say to audiences: “As if the two existed in separate categories.” I had no idea how long this outfit might possibly endure. (As Lucille Ball, divorcing with Desi, said of her marriage, “Me, I didn’t give it two weeks.”) Yet the quintet is in its seventh year now and we even get to wail at Minton’s Playhouse! I love what these people do with my tunes. And that’s the truth.
Claire Daly has long been a mainstay of the New York jazz scene and her baritone saxophone has notably graced the groups of Joel Forrester. Her 2001 recording, Movin’ On is now available on Ride Symbol. Claire leads a quartet that includes pianist Eli Yamin, bassist Dave Hofstra, drummer Peter Grant and, on two selections, trumpeter James Zollar. The group covers jazz and popular standards and an original by Mr. Forrester. And on the Leonard Bernstein/Comden and Green chestnut Some Other Time, Ms. Daly is presented in her recorded vocal debut and it’s sweet and lovely.