Stephen Riley & Peter Zak “Deuce” (SCCD 31825)

SCCD 31825 Stephen Riley & Peter Zak “Deuce” Stephen Riley started his recording career with SteepleChase in 2005 with an amazing (and unusual) piano-less trio SCCD 31584 Inside Out. Since then he had more often than not opted for the piano-less format until he recorded his 2013 quartet release SCCD 31765 Lover with Peter Zak on piano. Riley and Zak started performing as duo and made their first duo release SCCD 31806 Haunted Heart to critical and public acclaim. So here’s “Deuce” to follow up by the empathic twosome. “…This session is his third meeting with pianist Peter Zak, whose sensitive accompaniment allows Riley the breathing room he thought could … Continue reading

Chris Byars “The Music of Frank Strozier” (SCCD 31824)

SCCD 31824 Chris Byars “The Music of Frank Strozier” Chris Byars’s ongoing endeavour to re-discover and celebrate works by outstanding jazz composers of the past generations produced here another collection of gems by alto saxophonist Frank Strozier superbly arranged by Byars. Born in Memphis, TN in 1937 Frank Strozier grew up playing piano in the nourishing Memphis blues/jazz environment. Strozier established himself in New York as highly acclaimed alto sax player and composer in the 1960s, performing a. o. as a member of The Miles Davis Sextet. “The music of Duke Jordan is surely worthy of re-appraisal and when it is refurbished and re-interpreted as creatively as it is here … Continue reading

Rich Perry “Mood” (SCCD 31830)

SCCD 31830 Rich Perry “Mood” “Mood” deciphers “ballads” here in this Rich Perry new album, which is, to quote the liner notes author Neil Tesser, “.. all ballads, all handled with skill and taste, yet all pushing at the edges to find something else.” “The SteepleChase sessions… constitute a body of work equal to anyone currently in the jazz mainstream. Perry’s editing, shifts in tone and phrasing, and embellishments of songs like “Gone With The Wind” on Gone (SCCD 31670) evince a genuine appreciation of the melodies, as well as a desire to make his own way through them.” (David A Orthmann-AAJ) RICH PERRY tenor saxophone HAROLD DANKO piano JAY … Continue reading

Vic Juris “Vic plays Victor Young” (SCCD 31829)

SCCD 31829 Vic Juris “Vic plays Victor Young” Stella By Starlight, My Foolish Heart, Johnny Guitar, Beautiful Love – just a few of the iconic American Songbook titles by Victor Young, whose music has been an important part of the repertoire of guitarist Vic Juris for many years. Juris dedicates the whole album here to the undisputed giant of the American film music composer of the last century. “Two outstanding qualities characterize Vic Juris’ playing. One is his embodiment of the jazz tradition, while always stretching his scope and reaching for new possibilities and concepts. The other is his almost uncanny ability to hear and communicate the totality of the music … Continue reading

Olegario Diaz “Aleph In Chromatic” (SCCD 31823)

SCCD 31823 Olegario Diaz “Aleph In Chromatic” Born in Caracas, Venezuela, Olegario Diaz moved to USA at age 17 to study jazz at the Berklee College of Music and then furthered his studies at New York’s Manhattan School of Music where he earned the master’s degree. Currently in Venezuela, Diaz leads an active life as performer and renowned author of several instructional books. He travels frequently to New York to record and perform. “Diaz wrote seven of the tunes here and that seems logical as he appears to be one of the best jazz composers today…. He is more than a fresh breath of air in the classical post-bebop tradition.” … Continue reading

Kirk Knuffke & Jesse Stacken “Satie” (SCCD 31822)

SCCD 31822 Kirk Knuffke & Jesse Stacken “Satie” The music of the early 20th century French Avant-gardist Erik Satie for a jazz album makes perfect sense when its interpreters/performers are cornetist Kirk Knuffke and his long-time partner pianist Jesse Stacken. They both share their musical background in unconventional new/free jazz as well as classical training. The Knuffke/Stacken duo has released a series of highly acclaimed albums with music by renowned composers of jazz. “This is nostalgia made vibrant, played with precision, depth, good taste and a leisurely refusal to overcrowd its sonic space.” (Martin Longley – AAJ on SCCD 31677 Mockingbird) KIRK KNUFFKE cornet JESSE STACKEN piano Recorded May 2015 … Continue reading

Gregory Tardy “Chasing After The Wind” (SCCD 31821)

SCCD 31821 Gregory Tardy “Chasing After The Wind” This year is the 10th anniversary of Gregory Tardy’s tenure with SteepleChase label which started with his superlative release “The Truth” SCCD 31583. “One of the bright hopes, Tardy sounds like a seeker, absolution and salvation in every solo.” (New York Times) Since then Tardy has, except for a short sabbatical leave from the commercial music scene, kept on creating spiritually inspired music that appealed and reached out to people of all faiths and convictions. On this new album Tardy combines his own new music with a handful of intriguing compositions by other artists from the past to set up a scene … Continue reading

Jason Palmer “Beauty ‘n’ Numbers – The Sudoku Suite” (SCCD 31820)

SCCD 31820 Jason Palmer “Beauty ‘n’ Numbers – The Sudoku Suite” Trumpeter/Composer/Arranger/Educator/Actor Jason Palmer, the winner of several prestigious competitions including the 2009 Carmine Caruso International Jazz Trumpet Solo Competition presents his first quartet album here. As always Jason is keen on sharing with the listeners how the music is conceived, developed and performed in his meticulously organized liner notes. The music which based on a Sudoku game originates in the 2007 commissioned work by the Festival of New Trumpet Music in N.Y.C. “…what a superb record it is; one that will caress the discerning ear and repay hours of repeated listening being a refined post-modern extension of timeless hard-bop … Continue reading

Pierre Dørge & New Jungle Orchestra “Ubi Zaa” Featuring Kirk Knuffke (SCCD 31819)

SCCD 31819 Pierre Dørge & New Jungle Orchestra “Ubi Zaa” Featuring Kirk Knuffke Danish avant-garde, modern jazz guitarist/composer and most famously leader of “one of Europe’s most sophisticated bands” (Norman Weinstein) has always prided himself on the longevity (since 1980) of his constantly active New Jungle Orchestra. On this new live recording Dørge features his favourite American cornetist Kirk Knuffke and writes music with Kirk’s sound in mind. With the help of engaging audience in Copenhagen NJO delivers one amazing concert here. PIERRE DØRGE guitar, conductor KIRK KNUFFKE cornet JAKOB MYGIND tenor- & soprano saxophone ANDERS BANKE tenor saxophone, clarinet, bass clarinet KENNETH AGERHOLM trombone IRENE BECKER piano, synthesizer THOMMY … Continue reading

Andy LaVerne – Genesis (SCCD 31818)

SCCD 31818 Andy LaVerne “Genesis” To quote Danish critic Niels Overgaard, Andy LaVerne is “one of jazz’s analytical workmen”. The enormous body of his work as pianist, composer and educator over the five decades does not stop LaVerne from being creative to add new dimension to his artistry as evidenced in this new album. “… pianist Andy LaVerne possesses talent that should be commensurate with a much broader public awareness.” (C. Andrew Hovan – AAJ) “LaVerne’s writing chops are as impressive as his playing.” (Harvey Siders – Jazztimes on Pianissimo SCCD31512) ANDY LAVERNE piano MIKE RICHMOND bass, cello JASON TIEMANN drums Recorded December 2015 1 GENESIS 7:32 2 METAFOUR 5:50 3 … Continue reading