Finnish saxophonist Timo Lassy may not be a familiar name to American jazz fans yet, but if there is any justice, that will change with the release of this debut album. Lassy is part of the turn-of-the-millennium group of truly fantastic jazz musicians from Europe in general and Finland in particular, who have embraced both the "mainstream" hard bop and soul-jazz traditions as well as the more sophisticated aspect of club culture (sans hip-hop or house music) and come up with a new palette of colors and textures to draw from.
Really wonderful work from pianist Bobby Scott – a perfect showcase not just for his young talents as a composer and arranger, but also for a host of key solo performers as well! This full album brings together two previous 10" LP sessions – both of them brilliant, and graced by some of the most modern talents Bethlehem Records had to offer – which makes for extremely fresh sounds from Scott's wonderful music – jazz that's at a level that's really hard to peg – neither west coast cool, nor east coast arranged – but a really special space of its own!
Celebrating a decade of making music, The Best of Down to the Bone collects 11 of the soul-jazz/fusion band's biggest songs – at least one from each of their six albums – into one neatly compiled collection. Released by Narada, who Down to the Bone has been with since 2004's Cellar Funk, this best-of is a superfluous addition to anyone who has most, or many, of the group's records, but for someone who just wants to learn what Down to the Bone is about, this hits the spot.
Wonderfully sweet work from trumpeter Charlie Shavers – a set that has Shavers blowing on ballads over larger orchestrations – in a style that's really our favorite side of his music! Charlie's horn already has a long legacy by the time of this record – a slightly mature style that sounds wonderfully as he drifts magically over string-heavy backings from Sy Oliver – in a mode that's warm and lush, yet also beautifully soulful, and manages to really personalize the familiar tunes in the set. Titles include "Stella By Starlight", "Ill Wind", "Stormy Weather", "Out Of Nowhere", "Stardust", and "I Cover The Waterfront".
A compelling Bethlehem set from reedman Sam Most – a date that's possibly his most sophisticated session for the label, thanks to arrangements from producer Teddy Charles! Charles sets up Most in a "with strings" format here – but one that's a bit more laidback than usual – as the tunes are somewhat long for the setting, and often feature Sam's solos snaking out wonderfully on flute, tenor, and a bit of clarinet. Jimmy Raney plays a bit of guitar on the record, but the main charm comes from the interplay between Most's reeds and the strings – which really comes off with a dark sort of sound overall, one that clearly marks Charles' presence on the record. Titles include "Lover Man", "When Your Lover Has Gone", "Alone Together", "Softly As In A Morning Sunrise", and "You Stepped Out Of A Dream".
7 Classic Albums, Vol. 2 album for sale by The Ray Charles Singers was released 2013 on the Real Gone Jazz label. EU-only four CD collection containing seven albums from the Soul/Jazz/Rock icon. Includes the albums In Person, The Genius Sings The Blues, Soul Meeting, The Genius Afterhours, Dedicated To You, Genius = Soul = Jazz And Ray Charles And Betty Carter. They come in a double thick Jewel Box on 4 CDs. All the albums been digitally remastered and enhanced for superior quality and the Real Gone Jazz label has garnered some really good reviews for sound quality. The digitally enhanced sound is a good indicator. A mumber of lush orchestral numbers a la Nat King Cole but oh well. They are good too. These are from 1960-61. Half of the fourth disc is composed of duets with Betty Carter. Disc 2 is all piano plus instrumentals, with Milt Jackson on the first half.