Friday, July 2, 2021

Klaxon Gueule - Klaxon Gueule (​+​3) 2010 (July 2, 2021)

This album is a live multitrack recording of the concert Klaxon Gueule gave at l'Envers on November 5th 2010

1. impression d'enjambement 04:37
2. excroissances plâtreuses 04:30
3. PET-scan glucose 05:27
4. Ours Debout Raide 03:42
5. assouvissement BINGO 04:50
6. stupeur bras ballants 05:57
7. formes de vies non montrables en l'état 04:05
8. JUMP-cut hors jouissance 06:38

Klaxon Geule
Bernard Falaise, guitare électrique
Alexandre St-Onge, basse électrique & électronique
Michel F Côté, batterie


Jean Derome, sax alto, flûte, petits instruments (4, 5, 6, 7, 8)
Ellwood Epps, trompette (4, 5, 6, 8)
Philippe Lauzier, clarinette basse, sax alto (4, 5, 7, 8)

Recording : Dom Girard
Mixing & mastering : Côté
Cover design : Michel & Fabrizio

© 2021, UFO.Ω (UFO.w67.p406)

David Boykin - Transolo (July 2, 2021)


Solo explorations across time, space, and place from Potolo to the pyramids to Port-au-Prince to the projects to the penultimate
from the primordial to the present to the future infinite
from the cosmic to the diasporic
spanning across the earth (transglobal)
spanning across the omniverses (transomniversal)

A conversation between oneselves on two instruments
bass clarinet and drumset
Trading Fours
four corners of the earth/globe
four quadrants of space

1. Track 1 06:14
2. Track 2 07:41
3. Track 3 08:35
4. Track 4 08:36
5. Track 5 04:13

Kevin Hays / Ben Street / Billy Hart | "All Things Are" | CDs Available July 2 via Smoke Sessions Records

Kevin Hays, Ben Street, and Billy Hart
Collaborate on Strikingly Telepathic Performances,
Which Resonate Profoundly After Months of
Pandemic-Induced Isolation
Recorded in December 2020 at Smoke Jazz & Supper Club
to Commemorate Billy Hart's 80th Birthday

On June 4th, Smoke Sessions Records proudly releases All Things Are, a collaborative encounter between pianist Kevin Hays, bassist Ben Street and drummer Billy Hart. Performed on the bandstand of an otherwise empty Smoke Jazz Club, the album features seven pieces, six composed by Hays, who contributes three original melodies and three ingeniously crafted contrafacts of canonic standards.

The proceedings transpired on the first weekend of December 2020, when Smoke proprietors Paul Stache and Molly Johnson – who have made herculean efforts to sustain the club as a viable venue during the COVID-19 pandemic – booked the trio for two livestream concerts in celebration of Hart’s 80th birthday. “The setting and the circumstances were unique, and the guys were eager to play again,” Stache says. “The music was so incredible that we all thought we should cut a record from these tracks.”

These jazz all-stars from different generations, convening for the first time as a unit, achieved this sublime recital in an empty room, after a single rehearsal. That they were able to coalesce so fruitfully in this environment stems not only from their rarefied musicianship, but also mutual trust built on long-standing relationships.

Street’s been a first-call bassist for everyone who’s anyone in New York’s progressive jazz circles since the late 1990s, when he and Hays first intersected on a private gig at Ahmet Ertegun’s Long Island house. They’ve subsequently worked together with Kurt Rosenwinkel and other ensembles led by luminaries of their generational peer group. He’s played alongside Hart in Hart’s working quartet with Ethan Iverson and Mark Turner since 2006.

Hays – whose c.v. includes 16 albums as a leader, a host of collaborative duos and trios, and consequential side artist work with such luminaries as Eddie Henderson, Sonny Rollins, John Scofield, Chris Potter, and Roy Haynes (and an engagement at Smoke Jazz Club in March 2020 with Ron Carter and Al Foster that was attenuated by the onset of COVID restrictions in New York) – first played with Hart in 1987.

Then 18, Hays was in Madrid, on tour with [drummer] Tony Moreno, who brought him to a club where Hart was playing with Dave Liebman, Richie Beirach and Ron McClure. “Tony introduced me to Billy, and without skipping a beat, Billy said, ‘I’m curious about you. You want to play?’ It was an amazing experience. He didn’t know me, and he didn’t have to do that, but if you know Billy Hart, he does stuff that he doesn’t have to do.”
On All Things Are, Hart decisively imprints his personality on the flow. “It seemed like Billy was playing with Kevin like a singer, which inspired me to think of Kevin that way and guided everything,” Street says, perhaps thinking of Hays’ mid-career choice to showcase his considerable singer-songwriter chops on albums like the eponymous trio recital New Day (2015), the Hays-Lionel Loueke duo Hope (2017), and a duo with vocalist Chiara Izzi titled Across the Sea (2019).

Street continues: “Playing next to Billy, there’s a feeling that he’s searching again and again for this thing he already knows, that could be out of reach but is worth reaching for. This beautiful human drive is inspiring. It takes you out of the mundane self-judgment process of ‘am I playing well or not?’”

Hays concurs. “Every time I’ve played with Billy, it sounds like everything is freshly minted in that moment, even though, of course, there’s such history behind it,” he says. “He’s constantly listening and responding to you; there’s a tremendous amount of conversation going on.”

Hart regards All Things Are as an opportunity “to play with two of my favorite players.” He describes Street as “unique – my epitome of a contemporary bassist; what he takes as normal, I think is extraordinary.” He continues: “I love the way Kevin plays. I played with Herbie Hancock and McCoy Tyner and Richie Beirach, and I don’t use the word ‘love’ lightly. Kevin reharmonizes on that level, and I love his touch.”

Consider Hart’s remarks as you absorb Hays’ ingenious melodic formulations on the contrafacts “Unscrappulous” (“Scrapple from the Apple”), “All Things Are” (“All the Things You Are”) and “Twilight” (“Stella by Starlight”); or the lovely melody and beautiful chord changes of “Elegia” (which debuted on Modern Music, Hays’ two-piano recital with old friend Brad Mehldau) and “Sweet Caroline.”

Then consider how “the sound of surprise” suffuses this iteration of “New Day,” the anthemic leadoff track. “After we finish the head, we’re suddenly in outer space,” Hays says. “Ben somehow knew it was time to go somewhere else, and he stopped playing, then Billy took it – and we were off. I wouldn’t have expected it to go completely left. But at that moment, BOOM, this ‘big bang’ happened, and we now had to evolve.”

That telepathic interplay, which these exemplary improvisers perhaps might have regarded as their quotidian norm before COVID, resonated deeply after months-long pandemic-imposed isolation. “I’ve been practicing more than maybe ever, which I enjoy – but it’s me alone at home,” Hays says. “Perhaps I’ve improved, but I’d also fallen out of practice of playing with other musicians. For this date, I was excited to interact with other musicians again, that it wasn’t just me and my own musical thoughts.

“This is the way I like to play. As someone who loves improvisation, I do my best to not repeat myself. I like the unplanned and I tend not to be directive – these musicians already have a direction, which tends to be open. This isn’t a free trio; we’re not playing free jazz. But we’re playing with the tabula rasa spirit, with as little as possible figured out other than the bare bones.”

"All Things Are" was produced by Paul Stache and Damon Smith,
recorded live at Smoke Jazz & Supper Club, NYC on December 4-6, 2020 and
mastered to ½” analog tape using a Studer mastering deck.

Kevin Hays, Ben Street, Billy Hart · All Things Are
Smoke Sessions Records · Release Date: June 4, 2021

For more information on other Smoke Sessions Records releases, please visit:

Vince Mendoza | "Freedom Over Everything" | Available July 2 via Modern Recordings

Celebrated Multi-GRAMMY® Award Winning Arranger,
Composer and Conductor Vince Mendoza
Brings Forth a Life Affirming Cross-Genre Collaboration

Freedom Over Everything,
a Revelatory and Politically Charged Album Set
for July 2 Release on BMG’s Modern Recordings Imprint

Guest Artists include
Joshua Redman, Antonio Sanchez, Derrick Hodge,
and The Roots' MC Black Thought

Six time GRAMMY® Award-winner, and 34-time nominee, Vince Mendoza is considered the foremost arranger of his generation, working with legends such as Björk, Elvis Costello, Sting, and Joni Mitchell. In a new star-studded release, Mendoza returns to his roots as a composer and conductor with a remarkable collaboration—highlighting the Czech National Symphony Orchestra, soprano Julia Bullock, guest artists Joshua Redman, Antonio Sanchez, Derrick Hodge, and The Roots' premier MC Black Thought—for his forthcoming album, Freedom Over Everything, on BMG’s Modern Recordings label imprint.

The album opens with Mendoza’s Five movement “Concerto for Orchestra” which was commissioned by the Czech National Symphony Orchestra, with whom Mendoza has had a working relationship for the last several years. The collaboration aimed to create a work that would feature soloists in the orchestra but to somewhat forge a new direction in this revered form. “My approach is a departure from the traditions of an orchestra concerto. For me it was more about having an arc that tells a particular story but also incorporates rhythmic and melodic aspects of African American music and improvisation.” explains Mendoza. 

“Coinciding with the composition of the concerto was the 2016 [American] saga of the election of ‘45’ and the resulting tremendous discord in the U.S. during that time. While writing this piece, the events happening in our country invaded my artistic space. For the first time I felt I couldn’t really write music and be removed from what was going on in our environment. I started seriously considering the importance of an artist to reflect the times and how I could make my music a reflection not only of what I was witnessing but what I hoped would occur. So that’s when the arc of this concerto started to take shape.” 

Mendoza, as a skilled practitioner of the classical-jazz fusion that Gunther Schuller once called third stream, was and is ideally suited to meet this challenge. “I sought to design the structure of the concerto to be inspired by M.L. King’s remarks on the moral universe, that the arc is long, but it bends toward justice. The beginning of the concerto (the first movement is called ‘American Noise’) reflects the discord that began leading up to the 2016 election. Of course, it pales in comparison to what we dealt with in 2020 and now 2021,” says Mendoza, “but the arc of the composition goes through that process of pure noise, much needed consolation and the need for ‘hitting the streets’. The end of the concerto seeks to reflect justice and the hope for a peaceful resolution to what we were only entering in 2016. Arguably in 2021 we still haven’t quite gotten there.” 
Throughout the “Concerto for Orchestra,” drummer Antonio Sanchez provides rhythmic  textures using color, placement and variation accenting the various motifs and ideas expressed in Mendoza’s score. “Antonio thinks and plays like a composer,” says Mendoza. “He was the perfect person to step into this music. He was very sympathetic to what I wanted to achieve, while never losing his voice in the process.” Joshua Redman’s saxophone performance in “Meditation” provides an important improvisational voice to the movement. Mendoza points out that the piece was not originally conceived to have improvised commentary in it. “Once we recorded it, I thought that the music asked for Joshua’s dialog with the orchestra. Joshua understood the purpose and the mood that was needed in that moment, and he played so beautifully.” 

The fifth movement of the concerto, “Justice and the Blues,” is a sly reference to two famous quotations from philosopher and public intellectual Dr. Cornel West: “Justice is what Love looks like in public,” and "The Blues responds to the catastrophic with compassion, without drinking from the cup of bitterness." “When we recorded this piece last year in July (of 2019) in particular that last movement – the middle section of that piece that has the groove and the vamp, was originally going to be an instrumental solo,” Mendoza recalls, “I thought we should really have a message there through rap instead. Listening to the recordings of Black Thought, his work seemed to reflect a certain awareness of message I wanted to bring out in this piece. When he agreed to record, Covid hit the U.S. and we were delayed. And then (the death of) George Floyd happened – and then the reaction to George Floyd happened. And so, the shift of consciousness of what we thought was going to be in Black Thought’s performance was entirely different. Then he came up with this amazing heartfelt text,” Hodge provides a foundation of groove for the music and Black Thought’s text of Freedom Over Everything.

“In a way, my plan for a long, constructed arc was interrupted by reality. That’s sort of Jazz sensibility. You can plan your structure but then somebody comes in with their voice and completely changes your point of view. And I love that part of it – things are going to change when the human spirit gets put into it. Improvisation gives us that,” says Mendoza. He is uniquely suited to address these challenges with the ability to speak in the language of the composer and the language of the improviser. It is this denouement which allows for the transition from the end of the “Concerto for Orchestra” to “The Edge of Longing.”

When Mendoza finished writing the concerto the years of turbulence portrayed in the narrative arc of the music seemed to cry out for a piece that might serve as consolation communicating that ‘it’s going to be okay.’ “I wanted it also to be somewhat of an encouraging text that was going to bring people together and bring light into our situation,” Mendoza explains. “To The Edge Of Longing” is an extraordinary art song setting composed by Mendoza for Julia Bullock with orchestral accompaniment, based on verses from the “Book of Hours” by the late 19th, early 20th century poet and novelist Rainer Maria Rilke. 

Ms. Bullock described her approach to the material this way: “Vince wrote a poignant setting of an English translation of the German text by Rilke, which is what first got me excited about the project. There’s an intimacy in what is said, but the intensity of the words makes the scope far reaching, and Vince’s music follows that framework. The singers and interpreters I most respect and admire have clear intentions in the delivery of whatever music they share, and I aim for that same kind of immediacy—whether it was music written centuries ago or with my voice in mind. As long as there’s a message to be communicated and a genuine connection to that message, I find no reason to limit how to use my voice, or in which context. So, in that respect, it’s wonderful to participate in a project that is also uninhibited.”

There’s a through line music lovers can identify from Mendoza’s body of work as an arranger and from his previous long form orchestra works as a composer; especially Epiphany (1999) and Constant Renaissance (2019.) “New York Stories,” a Concertino for Trumpet and Orchestra, was commissioned by the Czech National Symphony featuring trumpeter and orchestra founder Jan Hasenöhrl.

As with the artists and the orchestra, Mendoza selected a co-producer and engineer with the capability and experience to be able to work in both the jazz and classical idioms equal to his own whom he knew from his work with the Metropole Orchestra. Jonathan Allen — formerly the chief engineer at the most famous recording studio in the world, Abbey Road — was responsible for the recording, mixing and mastering of this album. If it is true, as Aristotle once said, that “Music has the power of producing a certain effect on the moral character of the soul,” then Vince Mendoza’s Freedom Over Everything is sure to be received as a welcome addition to the times in which we live.

Vince Mendoza | Freedom Over Everything
Modern Recordings | Release Date: July 2, 2021

For more information on Vince Mendoza, please visit:

Jeff Lorber Fusion / Space-Time (July 2nd, 2021 Shanachie Entertainment)


The Stars Align on Anticipated New CD Featuring Special Guests Hubert Laws, Bob Mintzer, Paul Jackson Jr., Gerald Alright & More

“I’m incredibly lucky to spend my time doing something that I love. When you are doing things that you enjoy, it is easy to spread those good vibes around,” shares Jeff Lorber. The down to earth and humble trailblazing Grammy-winning pianist, composer and producer has built an impressive four-decade career, transcending musical boundaries and honing his own uniquely identifiable sound. A groundbreaking Fender Rhodes pioneer along with Herbie Hancock, Joe Sample and Bob James, Lorber is also one of the most in-demand producers in Contemporary Jazz. Maintaining a busy schedule during the pandemic this past year, Lorber worked on projects with Herb Alpert, Richard Elliot, Norman Brown and Alexander Zonjic, just to name a few. 

“While working on all of these projects,” explains Jeff, “I was sending my manager Bud Harner stuff that I was writing and he was particularly enthusiastic when I sent him my now new single “Back Room” in demo form. His reaction really inspired me to want to focus on making my own record.” July 2, 2021 Jeff Lorber continues to affirm why he is a magnetic force of nature with the release of the anticipated Space-Time. In selecting an album title, Jeff Lorber alludes to his affinity for science and physics. With all the recent chatter about Government confirmed UFO sightings and potential extra terrestrial life, Lorber muses, “If there are aliens, they are probably watching I Love Lucy right now and maybe jamming to early Miles Davis and John Coltrane or listening to some Sun Ra!”

Space-Time is a supersonic odyssey with longtime Jeff Lorber Fusion trio-mates drummer Gary Novak (who has worked with everyone from George Benson to Chick Corea) and bassist/Yellowjackets founding member Jimmy Haslip. “I first met Jimmy and we worked together in the early 80s but we really started working closely in 2010 after a tour we did together in Russia,” recalls Lorber. “He’s a good partner to have and he keeps the big picture in mind, when I sometimes tend to be more detail oriented about things. Gary became part of the core rhythm section around 2010. He’s a good friend and good hang. We have a lot of fun together besides making music.” The album also enlists some help from flutist Hubert Laws, guitarists Paul Jackson, Jr., Michael Landau and Robben Ford, saxophonists Bob Mintzer, Dave Mann, Gary Meek and Gerald Albright (who actually plays electric bass on a track). Space-Time showcases new and original material including a track that was penned for Jeff’s friend and towering piano giant Chick Corea, shortly after his passing.

Jeff Lorber Fusion maps out all of the celestial coordinates on Space-Time, offering a wondrous galaxy of sonic delight. Lorber and company manage to create a sound and feel throughout the album that captures the essence and vibe of a live show. “All the musicians are experienced studio musicians and that’s something that studio players always aim for. The idea is to make it sound natural, grooving and relaxed and to capture the sound of playing for a live audience even though the audience isn’t physically there.” While most of the band completed the album from their own remote studio locations, Lorber and Gary Novak did have the opportunity to record together in the same studio. “Over the last number of years most of us have gotten used to tracking at home,” explains Jeff. “So from that standpoint it wasn’t that different from a normal record. One thing that was different, however was the absence of live touring, I was able to really focus on the record and this album benefitted positively from that.”
In 2018, Jeff Lorber Fusion scored their first Grammy win with the recording Prototype. Lorber reflects, “Winning a Grammy was a thrill, especially after not winning after the last six nominations. It felt very different to hear my name rather than somebody else’s after ‘the winner is…!” Jeff Lorber Fusion came to life in the 70s when the pianist attended Berklee College of Music. A true clinician, Lorber has made it a point to study the long line of modern jazz pianists since 1945. “Herbie Hancock and Chick Corea have been major influences but I had to go back and try to figure out who they listened to and were inspired by,” says Lorber. “Some of these icons that come to mind are Bill Evans, Thelonious Monk, McCoy Tyner and Bud Powell.” He adds, “I also can’t forget all of the pianists who played with Miles Davis such as Red Garland, Wynton Kelly, Tommy Flanagan and Horace Silver.” Growing up in Cheltenham, Pennsylvania offered great inspiration for Jeff Lorber. “There were a lot of home grown record labels like Cameo Parkway and Philadelphia International (Gamble and Huff) not to mention tons of home grown talent and the Dick Clark show originated from there too.”

In 1977 Jeff Lorber Fusion released their self-titled debut. Their 1980 album Wizard Island made the introduction of a then little known Kenny G. The ensemble quickly gained traction and became one of the most popular jazz acts, touring nonstop. In 1982 Lorber made his solo debut with It’s A Fact. He scored his first Grammy nomination in 1985 for his radio hit “Pacific Coast Highway” from his album Step By Step. In the 90s Lorber released a successful string of projects including West Side Stories (1994), State of Grace (1996) and Midnight (1998). During this time Lorber also stayed busy producing Michael Franks, Richard Elliot, Gerald Albright and Rick Braun, among others. The prolific pianist continued to add to his accolades with his shining recordings Kickin’ It (2001), Philly Style (2003), Flipside (2005), He Had A Hat (2007, Grammy nominated) and Heard That (2008), Now Is The Time (2010, Grammy nominated), Galaxy (2012, Grammy nominated) Hacienda (2013, Grammy nominated) and Step It Up (2015). Lorber made his first recordings for Shanachie as a member of Jazz Funk Soul with the late revered guitarist Chuck Loeb and saxophonist Everette Harp on the albums Jazz Funk Soul and the Grammy nominated More Serious Business.

Jeff Lorber has endured his own battle with Polycystic Kidney Disease (PKD) and has made it a mission to work with the PKD Foundation to raise awareness. “I was very lucky that my wife donated her kidney,” shares the pianist. “I’m very grateful for that. My sister had a transplant a couple years ago and she is doing well also. There are some solutions that are being worked on but like many genetic based diseases it could be a long time before there is significant progress. People should know that there are 800,000 people in the US with PKD and two million worldwide. It’s a huge problem that unfortunately doesn’t get a lot of publicity.”

With the release of Space-Time, Jeff Lorber continues to demonstrate that his inspiration to push his music forward is as energized as it ever was. He concludes, “Just being alive at this time with everything that’s going on and all of the developments in music technology, keeps me busy and on my toes!” 

1. Space-Time
2. Back Room
3. Sun Princess
4. Mind Reader
5. Memorex
6. Louisiana
7. Curiosity
8. Chick
9. Day One
10. The Truth
11. Memorex Reprise

Back Room Features:
Jeff Lorber: Keyboards and Synth Bass
Jimmy Haslip: Electric Bass
Gary Novak: Drums
David Mann: Horn Arrangement/Performance
Paul Jackson Jr.: Guitar and Guitar Solo

Introducing Al Hammerman - Just A Dance (will be released Friday, July 2nd 2021)

“I love his musical sensibilities and the way he pays loving
homage to the Great American Songbook. Musically, his
sense of style and swagger are meticulous.”
Grammy Winner Steve Tyrell

“In short, love him – love his talent – I will sing one of Al's
tunes sooner than later.”
Grammy Winner Patti Austin
Just A Dance - the 5th album by St. Louis based lyricist and composer Al Hammerman - is a welcome addition to the pantheon of great pop and jazz records. Hammerman's songs enchant the ears with jazz harmonies and memorable melodies tinged with pop, blues and Latin influences.

Hammerman has assembled an all-star group of vocalists and musicians for this record. These world class arrangements and performances help make these songs instant classics. His catchy melodies and sophisticated lyrics often stay with the listener long after the song has ended.

Many listeners are probably aware of Hammerman’s music without even knowing it, having heard his award winning songs in movies like Passengers, Gotti and Kin; on TV shows like Criminal Minds, Drop Dead Diva and Dynasty; and in commercials for companies like Armani and Volkswagen.

As with so many great songwriters, Hammerman’s signature musical sound is his trademark. After listening to this album, you’ll always be able to tell ‘that’s an Al Hammerman song!

1. What Else (feat. Alan Ox) 2:22
2. Everybody Knows (feat. Erin Bode) 3:26
3. Been Through the Blues (feat. Feyza Eren) 2:54
4. Right on Riverside (feat. Brian Owens) 4:30
5. Break Out the Blues (feat. Alan Ox) 5:24
6. In LA (feat. Arvell Keithley) 4:14
7. Just a Dance (feat. Feyza Eren) 3:13
8. Maybe Be Mine (feat. Alan Ox) 4:38
9. Sad Sunny Day (feat. Erin Bode) 3:34
10. Not Sure (feat. Brian Owens) 3:05
11. Always Looking Up (feat. Erin Bode) 3:53
12. Keep Keep’n On (feat. Brian Owens) 4:49
13. Just a Dance (Country - feat. Feyza Eren) 3:30

All songs composed by Al Hammerman

Words & Music - Al Hammerman
Arrangements - Mark Maher
Featured Vocalists - Erin Bode, Feyza Eren, Arvell Keithley,
Brian Owens, Alan Ox
Background Vocalists - Valencia Branch, Amber Sweet
Keyboards - Mark Maher (solo: 9)
Guitar - Phil Ring (solo: 3)
Bass - Zeb Briskovich
Drums - Miles Vandiver
Percussion - R. Scott Bryan
Alto Sax - Jason Swagler (solo: 1), Ben Reece (solo: 2, 4, 11, 12)
Tenor Sax, Flute - Ben Reece
Trumpet - Andy Tichenor, Garrett Schmidt (solo: 4, 5, 6)
Trombone - Cody Henry (solo: 4, 8), Jim Owens
Violin - Abbie Steiling (solo: 7), Emily Rockers Bowman
Viola - William Bauer
Cello - Andy Hainz

Just a Dance will be released Friday, July 2nd 2021

Al Hammerman can be found on his website, Facebook, Youtube and Twitter