Stephen Riley “Hold ‘Em Joe” (SCCD 31850)

SCCD 31850 Stephen Riley “Hold ‘Em Joe” Since Stephen Riley made his recording debut as a leader on SteepleChase with piano-less trio SCCD 31584 Inside Out (2005), this trimmed down format has stayed with Riley on many recordings including this latest album, which pays tribute to the great Sonny Rollins who first recorded this format in 1957. “The tenor saxophone trio is one of the great, if somewhat underutilized line-ups in jazz. Stephen Riley has made a study of the format and delivers a fine addition to a limited canon with Hart-beat…. Hart- Beat is a really solid recording, with some noteworthy playing making it a worthy successor in a … Continue reading

Pierre Dørge “Soundscapes” (SCCD 31846)

SCCD 31846 Pierre Dørge “Soundscapes” To say “Pierre Dørge” and not to follow it with “& New Jungle Orchestra” is almost impossible. Dørge created that small big band in 1980, which became a successful and stable vehicle for his adventurous music. They toured all over the world and built an impressive discography along the way. The guitarist/composer/bandleader, however, has never neglected to seek new palette to draw his music in smaller ensembles. Following highly acclaimed quartet release “Blui” of 2016, Dørge surrounds himself with all American colleagues who have deep understanding of Pierre Dørge’s unique soundscapes. “It’s an inspired collection of musicians and all serve the material well, eight songs … Continue reading

Allegra Levy “Cities Between Us” (SCCD 31827)

New Releases March 2017 Shipping March 10 SCCD 31827 Allegra Levy “Cities Between Us” Burgeoning vocalist/composer/lyricist Allegra Levy grabbed attention of critics and public with her 2014 debut album “Lonely City” SCCD 33118. Allen Morrison of Downbeat remarked, “Allegra Levy has a pleasing alto, a sultry delivery and a propensity to swing. Her debut album, Lonely City, is consistently engaging.” “Discovering a fresh, dynamic jazz voice is always a delight. When the singer proves an equally gifted songwriter, the pleasure is squared. Allegra Levy is one such double-barreled talent.” (Christopher Loudon – JazzTimes) Here on her new album, Allegra teamed-up with a powerhouse quintet tells her stories in both contemporary … Continue reading

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

Stephen Riley & Peter Zak – Haunted Heart – (SCCD 31806)

SCCD 31806 Stephen Riley & Peter Zak “Haunted Heart” Stephen Riley’s distinctive breathy tone and imaginative phrasing have attracted a good size followers in jazz listeners, musicians and critics. “Isn’t it nice to hear a truly individual sound in the sea of music that often sounds much the same? I stumbled across one of those sounds in Stephen Riley’s music…” (Luke Soasey – saxophonist) “Just heard Stephen Riley on a local radio. What a special tone he has. Dark and dry with a lot of subtones. And very creative playing….” (JJ – Sax on the Web) Here on his latest album Riley formed a duo with his favourite piano man … Continue reading

Stephen Riley – Baubles, Bangles And Beads (SCCD 31792)

SCCD 31792 Stephen Riley “Baubles, Bangles And Beads” Since his debut album “Inside Out” SCCD 31584 (2005) Stephen Riley has kept momentum to become and to stay the “distinctly unique jazz voice” (Neil Tesser). In spite of his preference for piano less format, Riley found the ideal pianist for him in Peter Zak, with whom he recorded the previous album “Lover” SCCD 31765. Here on his 11th release Riley backed by the same team including Peter Zak to interpret an amazing collection of classic but rarely heard jazz titles. “Lover, Riley’s latest, employs the talents of label mate Peter Zak … (Riley’s) unconventional use of ultra-hard reed to essay a … Continue reading

Stephen Riley – Lover (SCCD 31765)

SCCD 31765 Stephen Riley Quartet “Lover” “…. a truly special album .” (Terrell Holmes – The New York City Jazz Record on Hart-Beat ) “… a really solid recording, with some noteworthy playing making it a worthy successor in a lineage of great tenor saxophone trio records.” (Gregg Simmons – AAJ on Hart-Beat ) 1. Nice Work If You Can Get It (George Gershwin)2. Love Is A Many-Splendored Thing (Sammy Fain)3. When I Take My Sugar To Tea (Irving Kahal / Sammy Fain / Pierre Norman Connor)4. When Your Lover Has Gone (Einar Aaron Swan)5. When Lights Are Low (Ted Fio Rito)6. Deluge (Wayne Shorter)7. Lover (Richard Rodgers)8. After You, … Continue reading

Stephen Riley – Hart-beat (SCCD 31742)

Saxophonist Stephen Riley and drummer Billy Hart who have shared mutual admiration of each other’s work collaborated for the first time to present this compelling trio album. “….(Riley’s) lushly-conceived tone and phrasing are instantly recognizable, a post-millennial alloy of Lester Young disciples running from Don Byas through Teo Macero to Warne Marsh an on to Wayne Shorter and beyond . …” (Derek Taylor – Master of a Small House) 1. Just You Just Me (Jesse Greer)2. Isotope (Joe Henderson)3. Lonnie's Lament (John Coltrane)4. When It's Sleepy Time Down South (Leon René/René Otis/Clarence Muse)5. Ba-Lue Bolivar Ba-Lues-Are (Thelonious Monk)6. The End Of A Love Affair (Edward Redding)7. Mr. Sandman (Pat Ballard)8. … Continue reading

Dave Stryker – Blue Strike (SCCD 31729)

C. Andrew Hovan of AllAboutJaz once observed, “ What has marked all of Stryker's previous SteepleChase sides has been his penchant to not repeat formats or ideas. Each session sports a different group of musicians and the material covers new ground .” Mr. Hovan’s observation proves true here on Stryker’s latest recording of mesmerizing organ quintet with repertoire raging from Michael Jackson to Clifford Brown together with his originals. “( Stryker) combines tradition and modernity in equal balance, arranges with skill and imagination, teases optimum performances from associates with good-natured relish, and plays the blues with deep felt conviction .” (Mark Gardner – from the linernotes) 1. Joy Spring (Clifford … Continue reading

Ron McClure – Dedication (SCCD 31718)

Bassist/Composer/Bandleader Ron McClure eargerly took the challenge of combining two of the most exciting tenor saxophonists on the NY scene today: Rich Perry and Stephen Riley. McClure notes, “ I paid special attention to Stephen Riley’s soft, melodic qualities, which are his signature. Stephen is truly a unique voice in today’s jazz scene, and utilizing his most personal musical qualities was top priority for me when choosing this material. Rich Perry is amazing! He can play anything and everything, and is as creative as a soloist as anyone on his instrument today. Rich Perry shines brightly, as always….” “… Soft Hands (SCCD31615) signals his 31 st session for SteepleChase as … Continue reading