lunes, 11 de agosto de 2014

Stéphane Escoms Trio+ - Meeting Point (2014)

Il sort aujourd'hui un flopée d'autoproductions dont beaucoup passent malheureusement inaperçues alors qu'on y trouve de vrais projets roboratifs dont certains valent bien, en qualité comme en originalité, ceux édités par des labels majeurs. C'est le cas de ce Meeting Point enregistré et mixé professionnellement au Studio Downtown de Strasbourg. Composé par le pianiste bulgare Mario Stantchev, le premier titre K.M.A. est une belle surprise : le thème primesautier qui s'incruste dans la mémoire et les improvisations hard-bop qui en découlent évoquent l'insouciante gaieté des compositions d'Horace Silver au temps où il faisait les beaux jours du label Blue Note.

L'interprétation en trio est aérienne, sophistiquée et pleine de soul, bien plus excitante à mon goût que le remix électro du même titre ajouté en queue de disque. Le reste, entièrement écrit par Escoms, est d'une surprenante variété. Ses compositions mélodiquement très riches sont ensemencées par d'autres cultures mais d'une manière subtile, jamais ostentatoire. Escoms a eu en outre la bonne idée d'inviter quelques musiciens qui, le temps d'un morceau, apportent d'autres couleurs sonores. La voix légère de la chanteuse équatorienne Maria Tejada renforce ainsi le côté latin de la ballade Ausencia tandis que G.S. Rajan prête sa flûte bansuri sur un Rajan's Song nostalgique qui lui est dédié.

Quant à Marrakech, avec ses rythmes et ses nuances arabo-andalouses, c'est l'un des sommets du répertoire qui, à l'instar du Caravan de Juan Tizol, a le pouvoir de faire éclore des images tout droit sorties d'un désert fantasmé. Ce morceau qui bénéficie d'un solo de guitare et d'un arrangement d'Anthony Winzenrieth témoigne aussi de la souplesse et du dynamisme de la section rythmique composée du contrebassiste Jeremy Lirola et du batteur Francesco Rees. A noter qu'une version en trio de cette composition est également proposée et qu'elle ne perd rien dans cette configuration de son pouvoir de séduction. Résultat probant d'une vision artistique large mais précise, Meeting Point est une belle réussite et une superbe carte de visite pour ce fantastique trio qu'on a maintenant hâte de découvrir sur scène. [P. Dulieu]

01. K.M.A.
02. Marrakech
03. Mario
04. Pick-A-Boo
05. Rajan's Song
06. Yellow Fruit
07. Market Under The Rain
08. Ausencia
09. Mario (Duet version)
10. Marrakech (Trio version)
11. K.M.A. Remix

Stéphane Escoms: piano
Jeremi Lirola: double bass
Francesco Rees: drums
Anthony Winzenrieth: guitar (2)
G.S. Rajan: bansuri flute (5)
Damien Prudhomme: saxophone (6)
Maria Tejada: vocal (8)
Danny Keane: cello (10)

"Hearing is Everything" Peter Watkins


Andrew McCormack - First Light (2014)

Andrew McCormack is a composer and pianist at the peak of his creative powers. Born in 1978 in the UK and now residing in New York, McCormack has built a formidable reputation as one of Britain's hottest pianists and a skilful composer of huge talent.

In 2007 he burst onto the scene with his debut album, Telescope, a masterful record converging McCormack's inimitable free flowing melodic lines with his rhythmic impulse. Since then, McCormack has extensively toured the globe as a bandleader with his trio and with the saxophonist, Jason Yarde. The McCormack&Yarde Duo released a series of highly acclaimed albums including MY Duo in 2010, and Places And Other Spaces in 2011.

McCormack has been a driving force within the groups of A- listers Kyle Eastwood, Eric Alexander, Denys Baptiste and Jean Toussant, as well as a host of other leading artists. Having developed and honed a skilfully original approach to writing and performance in the jazz tradition, he’s able to captivate audiences with his emotional and expressive style.

His music is quality-driven with a yearning emotive aesthetic, which may be described as quintessentially British. Yet, his move to New York has brought out a greater depth to swing, interplay and mesmeric live sound.

The result is a world-class pianist and formidable composer, who is ready to take that defining next step on to the international stage as a solo artist. With a stable home at Edition Records, new management, a host of weighty press campaigns and a new forthcoming trio album with New York musicians (Zack Lober on bass and Colin Stranahan on drums), 2014 looks set to be the most defining year of Andrew McCormack's musical career to date.

1. Prospect Park 04:08
2. Gotham Soul 07:24
3. Leap of Faith 04:17
4. First Light 05:20
5. Reluctant Gift 04:37
6. Vista 06:47
7. The River 04:48
8. Faith Remembered 02:28
9. Pannonica 06:44

Andrew McCormack: piano
Zack Lober: double bass
Colin Stranahan: drums

"Hearing is Everything" Peter Watkins


Tumi Mogorosi - Project ELO (2014)

Breathtaking Contemporary Spiritual Jazz from South Africa

When Tumi Mogorosi composed this suite for jazz musicians and opera vocalists he had never heard the previous successful attempts by Donald Byrd, Max Roach or Mary Lou Williams to combine these seemingly 'unfriendly'aesthetics. Tumi, born in 1987 and already an accomplished drummer on the Jo'Burg scene, was at the time studying music at the Tshwane University of Pretoria where he became close friends with opera singers working on the same campus. So unlike some of his US peers Tumi's beliefs are not 'religious'.

Surprisingly, Tumi's suite wasn't influenced by these great elders' masterpieces, but anyone who listens to this album will agree that the suite encaptures the soaring spirituality that made these experiments of the '60s the beloved classics that they are today. Tumi does not belong to any religious group. This album is neither a jazz mass like Mary Lou William's Black Christ of the Andes, nor a compilation of devotional pieces like Donald Byrd's Christo Redentor. Project Elo stands for Project Elohim, the angelic entities of the spiritual scriptures which are in the drummer's philosophy, a symbol for accomplished human beings. The spirituality the album conveys is attuned to a 21st century syncretic, non dogmatic vision infused with esotericism. Recorded live with no overdubs in two days by a group of friends, this album captures a moment of Eternity and will defy any idea you may have of what South African jazz is. Tumi's music transcends labels and styles. When composing or playing he is only concerned with being true to the primodial source of life, which cannot be confined to any genre.

Tumi Mogorosi: drums
Thembinkosi Mavimbela: double bass
Sibusile Xaba: guitar
Hhlanhla Mahlangu: tenor sax
Mthunzi Mvubu: alto sax
Malcom Jiyane: trombone

Themba Maseko: voice
Ntombi Sibeko: voice
Mary Moyi: voice
Gabisile Motuba: voice

1. In the Beginning
2. Inner Emergence
3. Princess Gabi
4. Slaves Emancipation
5. Thokozile Queen Mother
6. Metatron Angel of Presence
7. Gift of Three

"Hearing is Everything" Peter Watkins


Tovy Meshoulam - Eternally Spontaneous (1994)

Jazz In Israel Vol. 24
Jazzis 1024
Total Time: 40.10
Modal, Latin Jazz, Jazz-Rock.
Recorded: 1993 Released: 1994

1. Jubilation 6.20
2. Spacing 8.06
3. Metamorphosis (for Yosefa) 8.13
4. I Remember Miles 7.15
5. Incarnation (for Ido) 5.30
6. Incentive 4.35

1, 2 & 6 by Arik Danon
3 & 5 by Tovy Meshoulam
4 by Avron Polakow

Tovy Meshoulam - Trombone, Leader (solo on 1, 5) 
Dror Ben-Gur - Tenor & Soprano Saxophones (solo on 1, 2, 4) 
Mark Rozen - Tenor & Alto Saxophones (solo on 3, 5, 6) 
Amos Ever Hadani - Guitar (solo on 2, 4, 5) 
Yaron Gottfried - Piano (solo on 1, 6) 
Yorai Oron - Bass Guitar (solo on 1, 2, 6) 
Rony Holan - Drums (solo on 2, 3)
Arik Davidov - Flugelhorn (on 1, 6)
Ziv Ben - Alto Saxophone (on 3)
Yosefa Meshoulam - Clarinet (on 3)

All arrangements by Tovy Meshoulam
Recorded at Gal Kol Studios, Tel-Aviv, Israel
Engineer: Graeme Jackson
Date: From June 20, 1993 to August 2, 1993
Digitally Mastered at h.m.acustica Studios, Tel-Aviv, Israel 
Engineers: Ben Bernfeld & Alex Reznick Date: February 15, 1994
Produced By Adam Baruch
wrote on booklet
Jazz is characterized and identified by the creativity of the moment - improvisation, but as in every other Art Form, so jazz is based on meticulous planning and intentional creation of a particular atmosphere and specific sound. These elements serve as the foundation and inspiration to every improviser, and it is up to the composer and the arranger to provide the performing musician with these elements. This album is an excellent example of such cooperation between the composers, the arranger and the performing artists.
Tovy Meshoulam, who proved his great arranging skills on his previous record "Acoustics" (JAZZIS 1017), is determined to undertake an even more challenging project this time - to present a series of original jazz compositions written by himself and by two other young Israeli composers. The compositions vary in style and mood, taking us through modal, serial, Latin and rock music intertwined with jazz concepts. Tovy's brilliant arrangements add soul to this astounding music and create a tapestry of sound never before heard in this country.
The music presented here also demonstrates Tovy's involvement with other musical areas, especially the field of contemporary music. The composition "Metamorphosis", for example, was written for and performed by the Israeli "Musica Nova Consort". Here the composer touches upon philosophical subjects, such as the meaning of life and the circle of life as experienced by man.
It is interesting to see how well Tovy uses the instruments to create a "massive", almost Big Band sound, although he uses only a small ensemble of musicians. The voicing of the horns and the colors of sound combined with the vitality of the rhythm section is masterful.
The musicians chosen by Tovy to perform his musical ideas are the cream of Israel's jazz community. They are all gifted composers and band leaders, but on this album they concentrate on their skills as players and Improvisers in order to achieve the goal set by the arranger. Their exceptional accomplishments, combined with Tovy's perfectionism and unconventional approach generate a truly brilliant effect. One can only hope that this album will become a "classic".
Adam Baruch
June 1994
BIOGRAPHY from official site
 Born in 1956, Israeli composer Tovy Meshoulam graduated in composition at the Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance, and holds a Master’s degree in composition from The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. In addition, Meshoulam is a graduate of wind orchestra conducting studies from the Tel-Aviv Music Academy, and was awarded 5 full scholarships as a trombone player and 3 full scholarships as a Jazz arranger from the America-Israel Culture Foundation.
Meshoulam has completed external studies of the Boston (U.S.A) “Berklee School of Music” in harmony, orchestration and big band arranging, and studies of three advanced courses in Jazz composition directed in Israel by the eminent American musician Herb Pomeroy.
Tovy Meshoulam served as lead trombone player in the Israel Defence Forces Orchestra and has freelanced for 20 years in all possible musical fields: in classical orchestras – The Israeli Philharmonic Orchestra, The Jerusalem Broadcasting Authority Symphony Orchestra, The Israeli Chamber Orchestra, The New Israeli Opera etc.; in radio and TV shows; in theatre musical productions and in many albums by top Israeli artists.
As a Jazz musician, Meshoulam played lead trombone for 10 years in the Tel-Aviv big-band, and in the Jazz ensemble “Front Drive” – awarded best band in the 1st Red Sea International Jazz Festival. In 1990 Meshoulam established the 10 piece Jazz ensemble “Acoustics”, performing his arrangements, which was recorded and published by “JAZZIS” in 1992.
Tovy Meshoulam kept his classical background, and was a part of the “Philharmonic Trombone Quartet”, which included the trombone section of the Israeli Philharmonic Orchestra. In addition, he established a trombone quartet with three of his senior students. This ensemble has recorded 2 albums, which express Meshoulam’s capabilities as a bandleader, composer and arranger. The quartet was awarded scholarships from the America-Israel Culture Foundation and “EITAN” (Israeli Union of Wind Orchestra Conductors), and was chosen to perform the premiere of the known Israeli composer Haim Alexander’s “At Adama” in Jerusalem.
For over 25 years Tovy Meshoulam has been a conductor and music educator. He sees a great importance in bequeathing the big-band legacy to young players. As part of this vision he initiated the establishment of Israeli big-bands in high schools, conservatories and in “MATAN” (The National Youth Orchestra). His wind ensemble of the “Katzir” high school, where he serves as head of the music department, was twice chosen to perform at the “Mann” auditorium as guest of the Israeli Philharmonic Orchestra.
The culmination of Tovy Meshoulam’s activity as a composer, arranger, musical director and trombone player is well expressed in his four albums:
“Acoustics”, Meshoulam’s first album published in 1992, presents a Jazz group of ten: 5 saxophones, 2 trumpets, trombone, bass and drums (without any harmonic instruments). The album contains 10 original arrangements by Meshoulam for the works of the greatest Jazz players of all times (Charlie Parker, Bill Evans, Horace Silver, Chic Corea, Herbie Hancock and others) and of several Israeli composers.
“Eternally Spontaneous”, Meshoulam’s second album published in 1994, includes only Israeli jazz compositions, all arranged by Tovy Meshoulam, and presents the very best Jazz musicians in Israel. This album travels through the many facets of Jazz: Modal Jazz, Serial Jazz, Latin Jazz, and Jazz-Rock.
Tovy Meshoulam’s third album “Slide By Slide” was published in 1998. It introduces the Tovy Meshoulam Trombone Quartet and includes Jazz compositions and arrangements by world known composers Slide Hampton, Jack Gale, Bill Reichenbach, Lennie Niehouse, Ingo Luis and others.
The fourth album by Meshoulam, “The Seventh Dimension” published in 2001, also presents the Tovy Meshoulam Trombone Quartet. Here, Meshoulam composes almost all works especially for this quartet, highlighting the uniqueness of this ensemble. 


Rhoda Scott - Very Saxy (Live Au Meridien, Paris) 2005 (2 CD)

Dedicado a Manolo

Rhoda Scott (b. July 3, 1938, Dorothy, New Jersey) is an African-American hard bop and soul jazz organist.

The daughter of an AME minister, Scott spent much of her childhood in New Jersey, where she learned to play organ in the churches where her father served. Soon she herself was serving frequently as organist for youth and gospel choirs at her father's and other churches. Scott later studied classical piano, but she concentrated on the organ, eventually earning a Masters' degree in music theory from the Manhattan School of Music.

By this time she had been asked by a choir member to fill in with a small band as a jazz pianist. Enjoying the music, she agreed to stay on with the band on condition that she be allowed to play organ instead of piano. Choosing as her instrument the Hammond organ, she soon became a preeminent jazz musician and is considered by many to be the top female jazz organist.

Rhoda Scott: organ Hammond B3
Ricky Ford: tenor sax
Houston Person: tenor sax
Melvin Sparks: guitar
Lucien Dobat: drums

CD 1

01. Blues For Later
02. In Walked Bud
03. What A Wonderful World
04. The Days of Wine And Roses
05. Rollin' And Strollin'
06. My Funny Valentine
07. What's Up With That
08. On The Sunny Side Of The Street

(Ricky Ford: tenor sax)

CD 2

01. In a Mellow Tone
02. Nova
03. Shiny Stockings
04. Mune One And Only Love
05. Just The Way You Are
06. Yona
07. C Jam Blues
08. Only Trust Your Heart
09. Sugar
10. Sweet Sucker

(Houston Person: tenor sax)

"Hearing is Everything" Peter Watkins



Alessandro Galati - Open (2014)

This stellar quartet plays a mix of melancholic compositions of the leader plus some openly bright, joyful improvisations. Melody and chaos come together in a unique game that never ceases to fascinate the listener.

Alessandro Galati - piano
Bob Sheppard - sax
John Patitucci - bass
Peter Erskine - drums

1. Daylight Qwest
2. Grace Dance
3. Kwubha
4. Open
5. Tanguine
6. The Empty Room

Released 09 April 2014

"Hearing is Everything" Peter Watkins