Cole is fabulous, period. She explores a number of styles on this, her second album. Adding pop, blues, country and a French ballad to her standard, low-key jazz, Cole demonstrates that not only does she have impeccable taste, but she has the talent to make all of the material sound convincing. On "Get Out Of Town," pianist Aaron Davis gets up while playing and places one of his hands over the piano string while continuing to play with the other. This damped-string effect is an extremely interesting counterpoint to Cole's idiosyncratic, sexy style. This is a flat-out killer record, an all-time audiophile favorite.
Back in 1997 when Introducing Jim Rotondi announced that a major new trumpeter star was on the ascent, few could have predicted how important and prolific Rotondi would become to the mainstream landscape. A foremost stylist in the lineage of Freddie Hubbard and Wood Shaw, Rotondi quickly proved he had absorbed the legacy, only to jettison imitation in favor of innovation. Working regularly with his own groups and the hard bop ensemble One For All, Rotondi was a major force in New York before heading to Austria to teach in 2008.
Hard to believe it will be twenty years ago next year that the hard bop ensemble One For All debuted with Too Soon To Tell on the fledgling Sharp Nine label. Formed as a group that regularly played together at an uptown Broadway club called Augie's, each member was just at the start of their own budding careers. Even today, it continues to be a surprise that these gentlemen still find the time to assemble for the occasional record date or live appearance. Over the course of The Third Decade's eleven generous tracks, we get to hear a well-honed machine operating at peak power. Even though distances often keep these six gentlemen apart, one can only hope their new home at Smoke Sessions will provide for further releases and the we won't have to wait another five years before the next one.
Trombonist Steve Turre has quietly become an eminence grise of mainstream jazz, a veteran with unerring instincts who brings elegance, bluesiness, and rhythmic sophistication to just about everything he touches. That shows clearly on his new album "Colors for the Masters" were he teams up with a dream rhythm section of legendary elders, each of whom shaped the trombonist’s distinctive voice: pianist Kenny Barron, bassist Ron Carter and drummer Jimmy Cobb.
Philadelphia based singer and songwriter, Melissa Menago, is known by many as the lead vocalist for Rock group, June Divided. On Little Crimes, she embarks on her first solo record. With a combination of original work, classic covers, and unique medleys, Little Crimes shows off her incredible songwriting and creativity to match her timeless voice. Whether it’s her original singles like “Traveler” or “Smoke Signs” that draw you in, or her haunting rendition of “Hallelujah”, you will leave a fan.