Friday, August 6, 2021

NEW RELEASE: Gerry Gibbs / Thrasher Dream Trio - Songs From My Father (August 6, 2021 via Whaling City Sound)

Celebrated Drummer and Bandleader Gerry Gibbs Announces the Release of Songs From My Father

A Celebration of the Music of Bebop Luminary Terry Gibbs,
Prominently Featuring Musical Titan Chick Corea, In His Final Recording

Songs From My Father is the much-anticipated new album from renowned musical polymath Gerry Gibbs. On his thirteenth release as a leader, drummer - percussionist - bandleader - arranger Gibbs presents a smashing double-disc masterwork featuring four iterations of his acclaimed Thrasher Dream Trio. Under his astute direction, this band of jazz titans pays homage to the musical legacy of Gerry's 96-year-old father, Terry Gibbs. To honor Terry, one of the last living architects of bebop and innovators of the vibraphone, Gerry selected 18 tunes from his father’s vast discography and interpreted the timeless material through his own refined compositional lens with inventive, modern arrangements. Notably, Songs From My Father features the last recorded performance of the great Chick Corea, and includes one of Chick's tunes composed specifically for this project. With Gibbs in the drum chair, his Thrasher Dream Trios include Chick Corea and Ron Carter; Kenny Barron and Buster Williams; Patrice Rushen and Larry Goldings; and Geoff Keezer and Christian McBride; along with percussionist Kyeshie Gibbs.

A global pandemic could not slow down this jazz luminary - instead it inspired an impressive stint of creative output. Gibbs presents Songs From My Father fresh off the heels from his 2019 epic, genre-defying opus Our People, hailed by Philip Booth of JazzTimes as “Artfully layered pieces often verg[ing] on the cinematic...Quite a feat,” as well as 2020’s Emotional Pandemic, an 18-track album fully composed, engineered and performed (all eight instruments!) by Gibbs and released, free-of-charge, to a select 500 friends and collaborators. In fact, it was this release that piqued the attention of the legendary Chick Corea who initially inquired about Gibbs’ process for writing and recording all of the instruments. The conversation evolved to the possibility of collaboration, and the concept was born of releasing a double disc filled with the product of Gibbs’ collaborations with four astounding trios, including a collaboration with Corea and Ron Carter. Corea would later ask to be more deeply involved in the music that was being recorded, composing an original piece in dedication to Terry Gibbs “Tango For Terry”, and arranging two pieces for the album.
Gerry Gibbs by Joan Carroll

Gibbs remarks “What I wanted to do seemed almost impossible with COVID, fear, traveling, safety precautions as well as logistics. How do you coordinate four trios when a disease was spreading all over America?” In the throes of a global pandemic, Gibbs found himself on a several-month nationwide journey to capture recordings of himself alongside a long list of his friends and collaborators - the finest improvisers of our time. NEA Jazz Master Ron Carter notes, “one of the fun things that I look forward to, when playing with Gerry is what part of drum history will I be able to identify when he plays...what an unfortunate surprise that the trio recording that I was a part of with Gerry would be Chick's last recording. Chick and I played on several recordings together and I cherish those moments even more now.”

“To record my challenging music,” Gibbs notes, “and not being able to rehearse because of safety protocols seemed unrealistic, so I changed course and thought it would be best to play music that would be great vehicles to do what these 8 of the greatest improvisers on the planet are known for doing, improvise!” Ultimately, the bandleader decided to perform material written by one of his all-time favorite musicians and composers, someone’s music that was deeply integrated within his own musical upbringing and the history and lineage of the jazz idiom  - the archetypal works of his own father Terry Gibbs.

Terry Gibbs first earned international recognition touring with Chubby Jackson, Buddy Rich and Woody Herman. In 1951, he joined the Benny Goodman Sextet. Subsequently, he toured with his own quartet where he won the title of "# 1 Vibraphonist in the world," in both the Downbeat and Metronome polls from 1950 to 1955. Gibbs also played a role in breaking down the race and sex barrier in music by employing pianists Terry Pollard, who he often featured in vibe duos, Pat Moran, and Alice Coltrane. Throughout his illustrious career Gibbs has enjoyed world acclaim playing with greats such as clarinetist Buddy DeFranco, Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, Horace Silver, Max Roach, Art Blakey, Elvin Jones and Tito Puente. With 65 albums to his credit, Gibbs is the composer of 300+ compositions that were recorded by Nat “King” Cole, Les Brown, Cannonball Adderly, Count Basie, George Shearing and many more. 

Gibbs indicates that  “for the longest time, I wanted to do a tribute to him while he was still here. He is getting ready to turn 97 this year and still in great shape. He is, of course, known for being one of the last original BeBoppers alive and innovators of the vibraphone. As you will hear, he composes in many different ways making it a lot of fun to reimagine his music through these 8 true giants in music - his melodies inspired some incredible solos from all 9 of us.”

During the process of recording, a huge tragedy occurred with the untimely and completely unexpected passing of Chick Corea. Gibbs notes “I, like everyone that’s my age, grew up learning from and idolizing Chick. For the last 5 months of his life we spoke weekly on the phone. Sometimes it was about future plans to do more music together, sometimes it was to talk about new music he or I was working on. Sometimes it was just to say hello. What an honor to have had those last 5 months becoming friends with him.” Songs From My Father is the last recording Chick Corea played on, a testament to Corea’s stellar creative output right up until the very end.
Gerry Gibbs by Joan Carroll

Disc 1 of Songs From My Father features Chick Corea and Ron Carter on “Bopstacle Course”, composed in 1974 and “Sweet Young Song of Love” composed in 1985, and arranged by Gibbs and Corea. The first disc’s final track, “Hey Chick”, is a special homage to the memory of Chick Corea. Conceived and compiled by Gerry Gibbs, this monumental performance features every musician from all four iterations of the Thrasher Dreams Trio as well as the audio from Terry Gibbs’ original 1961 recording of the composition, then titled “Hey Jim” (which also included pianist Pat Moran bassist Max Bennett and Mike Romero on drums). The melody of the piece is first stated by a trio with Geoff Keezer, Ron Carter and Gibbs on drums, seamlessly transitioning into the track’s first solo which features a recording of several choruses from Terry Gibbs’ solo from the original 1961 recording, which Gerry Gibbs fused with overdubbing from Larry Goldings on organ, and himself on drums. The piece then transitions through five additional solos featuring various trios with Gerry Gibbs alongside Larry Goldings and Ron Carter; Kenny Barron and Buster Williams; Patrice Rushen and Larry Goldings; Geoff Keezer and Christian McBride; and Ron Carter, Buster Williams, Larry Goldings and Christian McBride respectively. Upon listening to this special compilation of masterful performers, Gerry and Terry discussed the matter and decided to retitle the tune “Hey Chick” as a dedication to the late musical titan. The Thrasher Dream Trio iteration with the inimitable Kenny Barron and Buster Williams is featured on the album opener “Kick Those Feet” and “Take It From Me” both composed in 1964. “Smoke Em Up” (1968) and “Lonely Days” (1955) both feature Gibbs alongside pianist Patrice Rushen and organist Larry Goldings. Gibbs performs with pianist Geoff Keezer and bassist Christian McBride on 1955’s “Nutty Notes”, and 1958’s “The Fat Man”.

Disc 2 provides audiences with further arrangements of timeless Gibbs compositions including 1949’s “T & S” and 1955’s “Lonely Dreams” featuring Barron, Gibbs and Williams; 1978’s “Townhouse 3”, 1961’s “Hippie Twist” and 1958’s “Pretty Blue Eyes” featuring Rushen, Gibbs and Goldings; 1978’s “4 A.M”, 1961’s “For Keeps” and 1955’s “Gibberish” featuring Keezer, Gibbs and McBride; and 1964’s “Waltz For My Children”  featuring and arranged by Chick Corea, alongside Gibbs and Carter as well as the final piece on the album - “Tango For Terry” written and performed by Corea for his old friend Terry Gibbs.

After 10 months and 15,000 miles of car travel to assemble the recordings for this masterpiece, Gerry Gibbs’ newest outing will finally be in the hands of listeners. Songs From My Father acts as a document to the memory of the fallen jazz titan who graces many of its tracks, Chick Corea, and the legacy of the luminary whose work the album reflects, bebop architect Terry Gibbs. With this monumental new recording, Gerry Gibbs cements his standing as one of the most creative and forward-thinking musicians on the contemporary jazz scene.

TRACKS – Disk 1
1. Kick Those Feet
2. Smoke 'Em Up
3. Bopstacle Course
4. Nutty Notes
5. Take It From Me
6. Sweet Young Song Of Love
7. The Fat Man
8. Lonely Days
9. Hey Chick

TRACKS – Disk 2
1. Townhouse 3
2. T & S
3. 4 A.M.
4. Waltz For My Children
5. Hippie Twist
6. Lonely Dreams
7. For Keeps
8. Pretty Blue Eyes
9. Gibberish
10. Tango For Terry


Thrasher Dream Trio #2
disc 1 – tracks 1,5 / disc 2 – 2,6

Gerry Gibbs / drums, percussion

Chick Corea/ acoustic piano, minimoog

Ron Carter/ acoustic bass

Thrasher Dream Trio #2
disc 1 – tracks 1,5 / disc 2 – 2,6

Gerry Gibbs / drums, percussion

Kenny Barron/ acoustic piano

Buster Williams/ acoustic bass

Thrasher Dream Trio #3
disc 1 – tracks 2,8 / disc 2 – 1,5,8

Gerry Gibbs / drums, percussion

Patrice Rushen/ acoustic piano

Larry Goldings/ Hammond B3 organ

Thrasher Dream Trio #4
disc 1 – tracks 4,7 / disc 2 – 3,7,9

Gerry Gibbs / drums

Geoff Keezer/ acoustic piano

Christen McBride/ acoustic bass

"Brian Jackson JID008" | Brian Jackson, Ali Shaheed Muhammad & Adrian Younge | August 6 via Jazz Is Dead

Jazz Is Dead’s Ali Shaheed Muhammad and Adrian Younge
Tap the Esteemed Brian Jackson for his
First Full Album Released in 20 Years with
Latest Jazz Is Dead Installment

Brian Jackson JID008
Available August 6, 2021 via Jazz Is Dead

One happy thing to be grateful for during otherwise trying times is finally getting to hear and enjoy new work by a man whose music is familiar to millions even if his name is less so. Indeed, Gil Scott-Heron continues to cast such a wide shadow that even many of his biggest fans often seem to forget that there's another name next to his on the bulk of his albums, the name of a man teamed up with Gil as a teenager and proceeded to ride out the decade as his writing partner, keyboardist, arranger, and bandleader for their Midnight Band. That man's name is Brian Jackson.
His considerable backlog of unheard material reveals a still-energetic and still-vital icon of the music wing of the Black Liberation movement. Prepare to hear from a musician whose work has contributed to the enhancement of all our lives in some form or another with the latest installment of the Ali Shaheed Muhammad and Adrian Younge’s Jazz Is Dead series.
“Brian Jackson is the first album we recorded for Jazz Is Dead. He set the tone for the entire label,” reflects Younge. “He turned our aspirations global. We never knew what this could all be, but with his inspirational character and musicianship, he led us on the right path. We are forever indebted to this icon.”
Brian Jackson JID008, available August 6, is the first full album released by the great man in 20 years (with the exception of Evolutionary Minded, an homage to Gil released eight years ago) and it's a testament to his multifaceted talents that while there are moments throughout that hint at his game-changing history and track record, for the most part it reveals a musician who pulls from lessons garnered over a 50+ year career only to keep his eyes firmly fixed on the future. “When we got together, the sounds flowed effortlessly,” recalls Jackson.
“As Dru, Adrian, Adam and I were charting a course for Jazz Is Dead from outside of our imaginations to a destination of wonder and possibilities, in walks legend and fellow Brooklynite Brian Jackson,” says Shaheed Muhammad. “We let the impact be our guide, fully capturing the moment in this recording. Brian’s smile and free flowing style takes us to the place where groove meets chill. This is the dawning of JID recordings.”
Brian Jackson JID008 serves as a masterclass in unbridled and open-minded creativity, no different from what Jackson did half a century ago. The ease and comfort with which his ideas integrate with those of musicians a generation younger than him bears this out. To listen to this album is to hear a hot up-and-coming musician who also happens to be a major jazz-funk legend.
Jackson really earned the equal billing on that string of classic Arista albums he and Gil made together because he went a long way towards keeping the musical ship of Gil Scott-Heron, Brian Jackson, and the Midnight Band's musical ship afloat. Many of the classic tracks on those albums bear Jackson’s name alongside Gil's in the writing credits and his distinctive musical signature brought all of it to life. Jackson has kept a considerably lower profile over the last few decades since those halcyon days but those fortunate enough to have caught him live playing and singing the GSH/BJ classics he was so central in creating (as well as tantalizing glimpses of newer material) know that his music, chops, wisdom, and charm are fully intact and in fact even better than ever, like a bottle of fine jazz-funk wine.
“It wasn’t until Ali Shaheed Muhammad, Adrian Younge and I joyfully completed the sessions at Linear Labs in February of 2019 that I remembered my favorite song of my former writing partner Gil Scott-Heron’s post-70s tracks, ‘Don’t Give Up,’ was produced by Ali,” remembers Jackson. “Adrian had already made an impression on me for his soundtrack work on Black Dynamite, Luke Cage and his authentic ‘70s music feel.”
"Nancy Wilson" is an elegiac tribute to the recently departed jazz-R&B icon, hinging on the combination of Jackson’s magical flute sound and a simple-yet enchanting piano motif playing against a funky rimshot/kick drum pattern. Even devoid of lyrics, the sincerity of this tribute to the already much-missed chanteuse comes through loud and clear in every bar of this wonderful and effortlessly melodic track.
A dramatic Rhodes intro from one of the true masters of the instrument, soon joined by drums, bass and mini-Moog, heralds "Mars Walk," which is a kind of sonic equivalent of bouncing around the surface of our neighboring Red Planet in a space suit. Think of this track as a jazz-funk Rover.
“’What’s this,’ I inquired as I opened the case to the alto flute Adrian had laying around the studio amid the myriad other instruments he had collected,” recalls Jackson. “Within minutes, I was recording with it. A few more tracks in, and I had jumped on the Minimoog to add some melodies and piano to tracks Adrian and Ali had penned. The next day, we went in and wrote a song together on the spot, with Malachi Morehead holding the rhythm down tight.
The first several bars of "Ethiopian Sunshower" simultaneously recall the essence of both post-bop and early fusion, but they quickly give way to a delicious Ethio-Jazz-inspired Afro groove on which Jackson’s flute once again makes an appearance in the role of a funky snake charmer over percolating percussion. It all adds up to an album highlight sure to inspire many remixes.
"Bain De Minuit" was inspired by Jackson’s wife, who happens to be French, and is the album's longest and most reflective track, reminiscent of some of the mellow-yet-deep classics he wrote or co-wrote with Gil such as "A Very Precious Time" or "A Prayer for Everybody." The influence that their recently departed close collaborator Malcolm Cecil had on Jackson’s music can also be felt in some of the synth tones heard throughout the track.
“If for some reason the respect and love we have for each other is not evident in the sounds here, let me tell it straight,” declares Jackson. “From the first minute, we could feel that our musical roots made us all a part of the same tree. This album is the offshoot of that notion. It is my hope these sounds also nourish the roots of your spirit.”

1) Under The Bridge
a. Musicians:
i. Brian Jackson: Fender Rhodes piano, Alto flute, Monophonic synthesizer
ii. Adrian Younge & Ali Shaheed Muhammad: Electric bass guitar, Electric guitar, Clarinet, Percussion
iii. Malachi Morehead: Drums
b. Written by: Brian Jackson, Adrian Younge & Ali Shaheed Muhammad

2) Mars Walk
a. Musicians:
i. Brian Jackson: Fender Rhodes piano, Monophonic synthesizer
ii. Adrian Younge & Ali Shaheed Muhammad: Electric bass guitar, Electric guitar, Clarinet, Percussion
iii. Malachi Morehead: Drums
b. Written by: Brian Jackson, Adrian Younge & Ali Shaheed Muhammad

3) Young Muhammad
a. Musicians:
i. Brian Jackson: Clavinet
ii. Adrian Younge & Ali Shaheed Muhammad: Grand piano, Electric bass guitar, Electric guitar, Clarinet, Percussion
iii. Malachi Morehead: Drums
b. Written by: Brian Jackson, Adrian Younge & Ali Shaheed Muhammad

4) Nancy Wilson
a. Musicians:
i. Brian Jackson: Alto flute
ii. Adrian Younge & Ali Shaheed Muhammad: Grand Piano, Electric Bass, Electric guitar, Clarinet
iii. Malachi Morehead: Drums
b. Written by: Brian Jackson, Adrian Younge & Ali Shaheed Muhammad

5) Baba Ibeji
a. Musicians:
i. Brian Jackson: Fender Rhodes
ii. Adrian Younge & Ali Shaheed Muhammad: Electric Bass, Electric guitar, Clarinet
iii. Malachi Morehead: Drums
b. Written by: Brian Jackson, Adrian Younge & Ali Shaheed Muhammad

6) Duality
a. Musicians:
i. Brian Jackson: Fender Rhodes piano
ii. Adrian Younge & Ali Shaheed Muhammad: Grand Piano, Electric Bass, Electric guitar
iii. Malachi Morehead: Drums
b. Written by: Brian Jackson, Adrian Younge & Ali Shaheed Muhammad

7) Bain de Minuit
a. Musicians:
i. Brian Jackson: Fender Rhodes piano, Monophonic synthesizer
ii. Adrian Younge & Ali Shaheed Muhammad: Electric Bass, Electric guitar, Clarinet
iii. Malachi Morehead: Drums
b. Written by: Brian Jackson, Adrian Younge & Ali Shaheed Muhammad

8) Ethiopian Sunshower
a. Musicians:
i. Brian Jackson: Fender Rhodes piano, Alto & C Flute
ii. Adrian Younge & Ali Shaheed Muhammad: Electric Bass, Electric guitar, Alto saxophone, Monophonic synthesizer
iii. Malachi Morehead: Drums
b. Written by: Brian Jackson, Adrian Younge & Ali Shaheed Muhammad

Pete Rodriguez - Obstacles (August 6, 2021 Sunnyside Records)

Life is a journey filled with ups and downs. The trials and tribulations the traveler encounters shape his or her personality and relationships, determining the kind of person he or she is. It is healthy to measure both the positives and the negatives, as even bad things can eventually work for the good.

Trumpeter/composer Pete Rodriguez has had an eventful life. Born in New York and raised in the Bronx and Puerto Rico, Rodriguez, son of the famed salsero Pete “El Conde” Rodriguez, has been ensconced in music since birth. His love for music set him on a path to make it his life’s work, whether through performing or teaching. Rodriguez’s new recording, Obstacles, was recorded as a way to confront his obstacles and working through them in a healthy way, by channeling his emotions and feelings into art.

Before college, Rodriguez spent four years in the army and then moved to New Jersey, where he attended Rutgers University in the 1990s to broaden his musical base into the realm of jazz music. Instructors like bassist Larry Ridley, pianist Kenny Barron, guitarist Ted Dunbar, trumpeter William Fielder, and saxophonist Ralph Bowen were instrumental in building both his love for jazz and his chops. At the same time, Rodriguez began to perform professionally in the vibrant salsa scene, which he had already become well immersed in because of his father and his Godfather, Johnny Pacheco.

While living in New York, Rodriguez familiarized himself with many of the local jazz players, but it wasn’t until he was on his first tour with Eddie Palmieri that he met pianist Luis Perdomo. It would be a couple years until he and Perdomo became fully acquainted in the City. It was Freddie Hubbard who had told Rodriguez that the most important thing in picking a band would be to have a good rhythm section. Having already found a great pianist, he asked Perdomo who else he would suggest.

Perdomo suggested drummer Rudy Royston, a true monster behind the kit, and they also brought in bassist Ricky Rodriguez, who the trumpeter already knew could handle any music put in front of him. Already familiar with the rest of the group, saxophonist John Ellis fit in perfectly as a counter voice to the leader’s trumpet. From there, Pete Rodriguez never needed to look to other musicians for his ensemble and made a number of recordings featuring derivations of this group.

Growing up in the City presented many challenges for a Latino; Rodriguez was regularly profiled by police. In 2000, his father passed away, which led Rodriguez to stop playing trumpet for three years. His work as a physical therapist assistant led him to meeting high level runners and bicyclists, activities that he would adopt and that would bring him out of his depression. The birth of Rodriguez’s daughter led to fluctuations in his family’s life and his practice routine, something that was difficult to adapt to. Rodriguez and his family moved to Austin, Texas ten years ago. He took a teaching job at a local State University, where he faced a number of hurdles and individuals who got in the way of his success and eventually led to his dismissal.
All of these events could have taken a real toll on Rodriguez, but he decided to use them as inspiration. He began to compose pieces that conveyed his feelings about situations and individuals who stood in his path. The resulting pieces were composed and presented to knock down another stigma he faced as a Latin American jazz player, frankly, that he could only play Latin jazz. Obstacles is a straight-ahead jazz album that swings with the best of them.

Recording was its own challenge, as Rodriguez had to fly the band to Texas and put them up locally. The group was only able to rehearse briefly before they put the music to tape. Rodriguez’s trust in, and the incredible ability of, these musicians insured the beauty and strength of the music they put down.

The recording begins with “50,” a contrafact of John Coltrane’s “Moment’s Notice” that Rodriguez wrote to celebrate his 50th birthday and that shows his penchant for visualizing his playing in line with that of a tenor saxophonist. The modal “Abraham” takes its name from the work of inspirational speaker Esther Hicks, who promotes positive thinking to reach goals. Rodriguez is hot and cold in his estimation of this model, he reflects that in the piece by remaining meditative and allowing the other members to solo, including a lovely turn on Rhodes by Perdomo. The snappy “El Proceso” came about when Rodriguez challenged himself to write a tune a week for six weeks while hosting a local jam session. The piece was built upon and built upon, until during one performance, Ellis suggested to play the melody up an octave, thus continuing the composing process.

The brief “Academic Backstabbing 101” is written with the character of a former mentor turned backstabber in mind, done here by eschewing improvisation (the individual in question can’t) and lithely playing over a piece inspired by Chuck Wayne’s “Solar” (a tune the individual believed was the most difficult in the jazz lexicon to play). “Mi Ritmo” is a lively attempt to make Thelonious Monk proud without being imitative over set rhythm changes. The lovingly composed “Triple Positive” is a tribute to a close family friend who passed away from breast cancer, her positive and loving spirit living on in Rodriguez’s warm trumpet melody.

The title track is based on Gigi Gryce’s “Minority” as played by Rodriguez’s hero, Clifford Brown. Melodies on top of melodies maintain the intensity on “Obstacle,” a reflection of tension and message of the tune’s inspiration. The warm tones of Perdomo’s Rhodes set the scene for Rodriguez’s “Someone Else,” a lovely, winding ballad. The aggressive “Mary Dick Ellen” is a musical smudge on a former colleague who used racist tropes when dealing with Rodriguez, so he uses her musical limitations in response. Rodriguez uses the same method on the quasi-blues, “FU Jon,” the unrelenting bassline chasing the detractor while Rodriguez abstains.

Pete Rodriguez has found a perfect, therapeutic method to get beyond the troubles that he faces. He makes music to confront it. Obstacles is a tremendous example of putting negative energy to use to generate positive (and extremely listenable) results. 

1. 50
2. Abraham
3. El Proceso
4. Academic Backstabbing 101
5. Mi Ritmo
6. Triple Positive
7. Austin & Ally
8. Obstacles
9. Someone Else
10. Mary Dick Ellen
11. FU John

Pete Rodriguez - trumpet
John Ellis - tenor & soprano saxophone
Luis Perdomo - piano & keyboards
Ricardo Rodriguez - bass
Rudy Royston - drums

Trineice Robinson with Don Braden / Cyrus Chestnut / Kenny Davis / Vince Ector on "All or Nothing" (August 6, 2021)

Vocalist Trineice Robinson releases her long-overdue debut after making her mark as a renowned educator, researcher, author and scholar

All Or Nothing, due out August 6, 2021 via 4RM Music Productions, brings together a lifetime of experience and influences from jazz, R&B, gospel and classical music with an all-star band featuring Don Braden, Cyrus Chestnut, Kenny Davis and Vince Ector

With the August 6, 2021 release of All Or Nothing, vocalist Trineice Robinson crosses off a major item on her bucket list, finally releasing her debut album at the age of 40. Belated though her emergence into the spotlight may be, Robinson does so with the confidence and dazzling range of a performer who’s invested a lifetime in her craft.
It also must be one of the last unfulfilled dreams on that bucket list: she’s already enjoyed a career as a renowned educator and researcher, developing her pioneering Soul Ingredients® teaching methodology to remedy the lack of Black music traditions represented in the field of voice pedagogy; and she’s raised two children, both of whom sing along with her on All Or Nothing.
“My focus on academia ended up superseding my ability to really nourish myself as an artist,” Robinson says. “With Soul Ingredients®, I teach concepts like ‘sing your soul’ and ‘music your story.’ Now it’s my turn to do that.”
Robinson finds herself in stellar company for her debut. She’s joined throughout the album by an all-star group featuring saxophonist Don Braden, who also contributed many of the arrangements; pianist Cyrus Chestnut, bassist Kenny Davis and drummer Vince Ector, along with guest appearances by pianist Phil Orr, guitarist Joe “Stretch” Vinson, percussionist Kahlil Kwame Bell and the horn section of Ian Kaufman, John Meko and Nils Mossblad.
Robinson’s path has crossed these musicians at a variety of junctures throughout her career as an educator and performer. Some of them are colleagues from Princeton University, where she is a member of the Jazz faculty; others have been connections made through her travels as a scholar and researcher; others are longtime collaborators on the local music scene where Robinson has plied her trade while focused on her teaching. And of course there are her children, Laura-Simone Martin and Lindsay Martin Jr., who lend a sweetness and charm to Robinson’s gospel-inspired original, “Let It Shine.”
“I tried to engage people that are a part of my journey,” she explains. “Whether it's my family or my colleagues, these are all people that I felt understood my vision and could help me be better at me being me. I got people that helped me shine.”
The music on All Or Nothing, a blend of standards, jazz classics, R&B/soul favorites and original songs, reflects Robinson’s diverse tastes and interests. In fact, it was her restless desire to explore beyond the narrow confines of a single defined genre that led her down the circuitous path to All Or Nothing.
“One of the subconscious reasons that I didn't push forward in my own artistry was the recognition that I fit in so many categories,” she says. “The industry makes you choose: if you're going to be a jazz singer you have to sound a certain way; if you're going to be a gospel singer or an R&B singer or a classical singer, you have to sound a certain way. What happens if I'm all of those? My mission was to find answers for myself as I tried to understand who I was as a performer.”

Her entire career in academia was a result of not being able to find those answers when vocal pedagogy was decidedly focused on the European classical tradition. She eventually remedied that with Soul Ingredients®, which encourages vocalists to find their own personal blend of influences and autobiography in their approach to singing. “The ingredients I talk about are the components that people use for self-expression,” Robinson explains. “When you understand how ingredients are used in a dish, you can create whatever dish you want.”
Robinson’s own passion for music began in Oakland, California, where she came from generations of clergy. Though she began singing in church, she resisted following in those footsteps, instead starting college as an engineering major. The urge to sing wasn’t quelled for long, however, and she eventually earned her master’s in jazz studies at Indiana University-Bloomington, where she studied with Dr. David Baker, and her doctorate in music education at Teachers College Columbia University.
The wholeheartedness with which she attacks every aspect of her career is reflected in the title of All Or Nothing, taken from the standard that opens the album. Braden’s forceful, abbreviated arrangement underlines the fervency of Robinson’s attitude as she takes on this next challenge. The singer’s take on Wayne Shorter’s “Footprints,” with lyrics by former student Nandita Rao, focuses on the crucial idea of legacy. “I'm always talking about legacy,” Robinsons says. “What are you leaving behind? Do you realize you have the power and the responsibility to make a difference?”
Robinson’s love of classic soul shines through on her silken rendition of Marvin Gaye’s “What’s Going On?” The subtle addition of “hoodies” to the lyric updates the song’s lament to the current day. “We're still singing the same songs and telling the same stories,” Robinson says tersely regarding the racial struggles that remain relevant a half century after the original song’s release. Some respite from that pain is provided by Duke Ellington’s revered “Come Sunday,” an intimate duet by Robinson and Chestnut that, she says, “definitely brings out my church influences… The concept behind it is that no matter what's going on, on Sunday things are going to make sense, even for a couple of hours.”
Robinson’s “mini-song,” “If This Is Love,” leads into “The Very Thought of You,” on which she and Braden alternate burnishing the melody. Both that and especially “Save Your Love For Me” were chosen in homage to Robinson’s favorite singer, the great Nancy Wilson, who passed away as she was working on the album. Another hero, Carmen McRae, is echoed on the Thelonious Monk tune “You Know Who (I Mean You).” She showcases her transfixing way with a ballad on the McCoy Tyner/Sammy Cahn collaboration “You Taught My Heart To Sing,” and a tropical soul feel on Natalie Cole’s sunny “La Costa.” The album ends with the brassy gospel of “Let It Shine,” save for a brief, heartwarming coda from 10-year old Lindsay Martin Jr.
Jazz, gospel, R&B, classical – Robinson combines ingredients from all of this music into the rich, expressive stew that makes All Or Nothing a bountiful feast for the listener. Combine all of that with her vivid emotional delivery and the unapologetic way she makes every lyric so deeply personal makes this a stunning debut well worth waiting for.
Trineice Robinson
Dr. Trineice Robinson-Martin has dedicated her career to performing and developing resources for teaching jazz, gospel/Christian, R&B, rock, country, and pop singing styles in an applied/private voice lesson setting. In addition to releasing her debut album, All Or Nothing, she maintains a busy schedule as a singer in a variety of styles while holding a faculty position at Princeton University as the jazz voice instructor, lecturer, and director of the Jazz Vocal Collective Ensemble. She serves on the National Faculty in the academic division of Gospel Music Workshop of America, serves as the Executive Director of the African American Jazz Caucus, Inc., serves as a Board of Director for the Jazz Education Network, serves on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Singing, and is a member of the distinguished American Academy of Teachers of Singing. Dr. Trineice created Soul Ingredients®, a teaching methodology for developing a singer’s musical style/interpretation in African American folk based music styles (i.e. jazz, gospel, R&B, blues, etc.). This methodology shows students how to take their personal experiences, musical influences and models, and execute the different components in a manner that is personal to the singer/performer’s own personal expression.

Trineice Robinson – All Or Nothing
4RM Music Productions – 4RM-20210806 – Recorded Dec. 17-19, 2018
Release date August 6, 2021

Come Sunday – Single from Trineice Robinson & Cyrus Chestnut

Adi Meyerson - I Want to Sing My Heart Out in Praise Of Life (August 6, 2021)

My journey with this album started in December 2017, when A friend of mine invited me to go see a Yayoi kusama exhibit. After reading her artist statement while waiting in line to get in to the gallery, I was deeply moved by the message even before seeing the art - all this art was created to provide an alternate universe for people (and the artist herself) to mentally and spiritually exist in, with nothing but love and compassion for each other and for nature.

The art itself resonated with me as well - I have synesthesia, a neurologic condition in which two senses overlap and trigger one another. In my case it relates to colors, and kusama's color palette used on her paintings were almost identical to some of the colors I see when I hear pitches.

After that day, the idea to write a piece of music inspired by Kusama's art was born. Fast forward a few years later, after getting a little push from my grad school professor Dave Leibman, I started to put down notes on paper.

I chose to use the word journey because a lot has happened from the time I started thinking about and writing this music to the time I finished it and released it to you. We have since entered a global pandemic, which has effected every single one of us in one way or another. We were forced to not only stay home, but also face many issues we were always running from and too busy to face, both as individuals and as a society.

The music on this album and the message behind it took a new shape and form, and became a personal exploration of mental health, womanhood and identity in our currant society. Inspired by kusama's story and my own personal experience with depression and anxiety, I really wanted to create a work that will let the listener fall into that utopian world for its entire duration, and take them on their own personal journey.

I know that as an artist, if I wanted to create that for my listeners, I would have to take a deep and honest look inside myself in order to understand what that means to me - what are some things that need to change in order to actually create that kind of world?

- Adi
About the Music -

Album opener “Prelude” establishes the mood with spoken word artist Eden Girma leading the charge. Treating the celestial melodic theme as if it were a drone, the emotional charge builds swiftly as new colors and vibrant textures envelop the listener, setting the stage for what’s to come. Track two is “Kabocha”, which features a counterpontal melody presented over Meyerson’s groovy ostinato bass line. The pitch material for this track, which takes inspiration from Kusama’s fantastical installation of the same name and means “pumpkin” in Japanese, was derived from the colors Meyerson sees in the work, and the rhythmic pattern comes from a well-known recording of Kusama reciting her poem “On Pumpkins”. Both Lucas Pino, on bass clarinet, and flutist Anne Drummond take particularly affecting solos on this dynamic musical odyssey, which opens with Kush Abadey’s masterful drumwork.

Marquis Hill features prominently on “Follow the Red Dot”, which like its predecessor, utilizes the pitches that coincide with the bandleader’s synesthesia. The driving energy of the piece mimics the “simultaneous feeling of chaos and perfect organization I felt when standing in Kusama’s Red and White Polka Dot Room,” shares Meyerson. This tune is also an ode to the artist’s provocative 1965 work “Phalli’s Field”, which is a favorite of Meyerson. Lined with mirrors and carpeted with a plethora of polka-dotted fabric protrusions that Kusama called ‘a sublime, miraculous field of phalluses’, the installation was an important moment for the artist. Next up is “Caged Bird”, a brilliant feature for Camille Thurman who sings and scats a compelling ode to the “perfect world” and what we’d have to change as a people to get there. In composition and lyric, Meyerson paid tribute to two of her favorite literary pillars: Angela Davis and Maya Angelou.

Part V, “Infinity”, is once again directly inspired by Kusma – in this case, her famous Infinity Mirror Rooms. Opening with an exceptional solo by Meyerson and prominently featuring Sabeth Perez’s ethereal wordless vocals, this contemplative tune is written from the perspective of one looking in the mirror, and examining oneself. It is also an homage to Meyerson’s native Israel, and a nod to its infinite complexities – both as a place, and in relation to her own identity. The poignant and moving title track closes the album, and is a thoughtful parting gift from the bandleader. ““I Want to Sing My Heart Out in Praise of Life” is meant to be a prayer for those who feel they cannot live their life to the fullest,” says Meyerson. “It’s also a reminder for all humans that being alive is a gift and worth celebrating.” This emotional closer is made even more powerful by it’s pared down instrumentation – Thurman’s soulful voice is accompanied only by Sam Towse’s gorgeous accompaniment.

I Want To Sing My Heart Out in Praise of Life is an important new addition to Adi Meyerson’s impressive musical canon. Her debut album, Where We Stand, was released in 2018 to widespread acclaim. Bob Doerschuk of Downbeat Magazine awarded the album a coveted four and a half stars and called it “intuitive and perspicacious…displays a musical maturity that belies her newcomer status.” Since arriving in New York in 2012, Meyerson has established herself as a first-call bassist – she performs regularly throughout the city’s top jazz venues, and has played with a who’s who of jazz greats including Joel Frahm, Joe Magnarelli, Steve Nelson and Charli Persip, among many others. With her own group and as a side musician, Meyerson has performed all throughout the United States, Latin America and Canada.

Track listing:
Part I – Prelude
Part II – Kabocha
Part III – Follow The Red Dot
Part IV – Caged Bird
Part V – Infinity
Part VI – I Want To Sing My Heart Out In Praise of Life 

1. Marquis Hill - trumpet
2. Anne Drummond - Flute
3. Lucas Pino - Bass Clarinet & Saxophone
4. Sam Towse - Piano, Fender Rhodes, Synthesizers
5. Kush Abadey - Drums
6. Sabeth Perez - Vocals (Track 1 & 5)
7. Camille Thurman - Vocals (Track 4 & 6 )
8. Spoken Word - Eden Girma (Track 1)
9. Adi Meyerson - Bass, Composition, Lyrics (except for track 1)

Additional personnel:
Miki Yamanaka - Japanese spoken word & original poem (Track 2)

Produced by Adi Meyerson
Additional co-production - Willerm Delisfort
Recorded & Mixed by Dave Stoller at Samurai Hotel studio in Queens, NY
Additional vocal & spoken word on "Prelude" recorded by Eden Girma in London, UK
Additional spoken word on "Kabocha" recorded by Adi Meyerson in NYC
Mastered by Michael Perez-Cisneros at Big Orange Sheep studio in Brooklyn, NY
Cover Photo by Ronald Steward
Cover art and design by Adi Meyerson

Jean-Jacques Rojer - Soko (August 6, 2021 Sunnyside Records)

Jazz is an expression of the African diaspora, a music shaped by the movement of African culture over generations, utilizing cultural elements from wherever it happens to pass. The small Dutch-governed island nation of Curaçao is a meeting place for many cultures. European, Latin, and Afro-Caribbean people comprise a unique population with an eclectic musical culture.

Guitarist Jean-Jacque Rojer hails from Curaçao. Born into a family of musicians and composers, music was an important facet of life from his earliest days. Naturally, the folkloric music of Curaçao crept into Rojer’s musical expression but he soon began to invest in the rich roots that informed that culture, from other Afro-Caribbean sources and the main stem itself, Africa. Rojer’s new recording, Soko, presents the culmination of those explorations and how they informed the young guitarist’s compositions and playing.

Rojer is the latest composer in his family’s long line of composers that spans over six generations. His great, great, great grandfather Jan Gerard Palm was the father of classical composition in Curaçao. His great grandfather Jacobo Palm and father Roberto Rojer continued the classical legacy for the family. When his father tried to pass down the piano tradition, Jean-Jacque rejected it, preferring to apply his musical pursuits to the guitar and rock music.

Upon discovering jazz, Rojer was hooked and invested himself fully in its study. He studied at the University of Netherlands Antilles before he eventually matriculated to The Royal Conservatory of Music in the Hague. Since then, Rojer has been a regular in the Amsterdam and Curaçao jazz scenes.

It was during the North Sea Jazz Festival Curaçao that Rojer met New York based producer Brian Bacchus. The two were mutually interested in recording a project that could condense Rojer’s wide-ranging musical esthetic with the aid of an incredible New York based band. The ensemble highlights the diversity the project demanded and included Nuyorican bassist John Benitez, vibraphonist Warren Wolf, Curaçaoan percussionist Pernell Saturnino, and drummer Jeff “Tain” Watts.
The music of Soko shows Rojer’s balanced approach to the music of his home. His compositions show the guitarist’s command of idioms that make up his musical background, from the classical inspirations of his father and grandfather to the Latin tinge stemming from his mother’s Venezuelan heritage.

The recording begins with the dynamic “Zumbi,” a piece written based on Curaçao’s ancient muzik di zumbi musical style that features Wolf’s dynamic vibes and Rojer’s guitar over a percussive background and subtle strings over a bed of percussion. The grooving “Guiambo”’s title comes from a gumbo like dish from the island and the ensemble utilizes a New Orleans bounce to spice it up. The lovely “Roce” is a laidback bolero that takes more than a hint from the smooth sounds of the 1970s. With a baião rhythm straight from the streets of Brazil, “Ruas” is a snappy and swinging piece that shows off Rojer’s bright guitar and Watts’s flexibility behind the kit.

A tribute to one of music’s greatest cultural fusers, Creole composer Louis Moreau Gottschalk’s “O ma charmante, épargnez-moi!” is modernized with a new reharmonization and percussive accompaniment by Saturnino. Rojer’s Latin chops are on full display on “Dindin,” an attractive descarga named for a regular Curaçao meeting place for musicians, here providing a wonderful meeting of soloists Wolf and Rojer. The title track “Soko” takes its name from the Swahili word for marketplace, the music echoing a market’s activity with layers of percussion and different instrumental characters.

Simón Díaz’s “Caballo Viejo” is a popular folk tune from Venezuela that Rojer steers into a more Afro-Caribbean vibe, switching the typical joropo rhythm with a 7/4 clavé. Kurt Weill’s standard “Speak Low” takes on a new character with 6/8 pulse and driving Benitez bass. The difficult “Saliña” is a unique fusion of mazurka and zouk rhythms, Eastern Europe meeting French Caribbean in a winding, dancing composition. The recording concludes with “Brua,” a tricky, Lennie Tristano inspired piece that takes the famed pianist’s rhythmic freedom and applies it to a Latin rhythm.

It is inspiring when a mix of such unique elements comes together in such an inspiring way. Jean-Jacques Rojer takes musical elements from the broad swath of the African diaspora to create his unique take on jazz, a swinging mix of Afro-Caribbean, Latin, and swinging pulses, on his new recording, Soko. 

1. Zumbi
2. Guiambo
3. Roce
4. Ruas
5. O ma charmante, épargnez-moi
6. Dindin
7. Soko
8. Caballo Viejo
9. Speak Low
10. Saliña
11. Brua

Jean-Jacques Rojer - guitar & percussion
Warren Wolf - vibraphones
John Benitez - acoustic bass
Jeff "Tain" Watts - drums
Pernell Saturnino - percussion

Golden Ashes - A Lightless Christ Shuns The Crown Of Divinity (August 10, 2021 Improved Sequence)

From the man that brings you Gnaw Their Tongues here comes Golden Ashes, the atmospheric Black Metal/Drone one-man project by Mories. Drones, keyboards, synths are the foundation for this celestial album that almost veers towards symphonic ambient.

1. A Lightless Christ Shuns The Crown Of Divinity
2. The Spectral Catatonia Of Unbearable Despondency
3. The Day Of His Glorious Wrath
4. Our Skins Hanging At The Gates Of Ctesiphon
5. Bewildered We Watched The Christ Ascend
6. In Agony Beneath The Stars
7. The Essence Of Your Body Became Celestial
8. The Twilight Pilgrims

Martin Sjöstedt - Walk Tall (August 8, 2021)

This album is recorded in a "live" environment to catch everything that is jazz. All tracks are recorded direct, no edits or cuts has been made in the postproduction.

1. What Now 06:20
2. Con Alma 05:00
3. Whoop-de-doo 05:49
4. Mulgrew
5. Round midnight
6. Evidence
7. Hotep
8. Soppin the Biscuit

Karl Olandersson - trumpet
Per Ruskträsk Johansson - alto saxophone
Leo Lindberg - Hammond B3 Organ & Piano
Moussa Fadera - drums
Martin Sjöstedt - bass

David Boykin Expanse - Progenitor (August 6, 2021)


1. Empowerment (We Are Sunlight) 11:17
2. Omni-intervallic 08:25
3. Progenitor 16:53

Recorded Live in concert at Hereafter Fest 2018

Joey van Leeuwen - Retrospect (August 9, 2021)

Retrospect to me is first about documenting an aspect of my musicianship that I had been developing for about five years and was realized in these recordings: my particular style of jazz which was influenced by my childhood heroes as well as the many musicians that I know and have worked with and my encounters with the New Orleans-based modern jazz composers, especially James Black, Ellis Marsalis, David Bode, and the music of the Silver Book.

This album is meant to be a guided journey through mysterious known and unknown places. Good images to pair with this are:

Jaya: Ho Chi Minh, Che Guevara, and other heroes of the revolutions of the 1960’s.

Black Narcissus: jellyfish, deep ocean trenches, and the “Air Loom” drawings of James Tilly Matthews.

Late Bloomer: flowers, couples in love, and the life cycles of living things.

Time Remembered: photos of those who have gone from your life, silent films played backwards and in slow motion, the Selma March and March on Washington.

Reflection: lone canoers paddling slowly through empty swamps, violent rainstorms, distant mountains.

Heyoke: photos of Black Elk, Crazy Horse, the Thunder Beings, ball lightning, Kenny Wheeler’s album cover for Gnu High.

I have been blessed to be able to work with some of the best musicians in New Orleans and the world as part of this project. Thank you to Erin Demastes, Oscar Rossignoli, Chris Alford, Ben Fox, Olas Ortwein, Alexander Geddes, Cyrus Nabipoor, Ricardo Pascal, Xavier Molina, Peter Gustafson, Gregg Molinario, Martin Masakowski, David Bode, and Arséne DeLay for your amazing contributions. You are not only amazing musicians but also friends whom I value greatly. I also want to thank Ricky Sebastian, Brian Seeger, Victor Atkins, Khari Allen Lee, Steve Masakowski, Yotam Haber, Charles Taylor and the rest of the University of New Orleans not only for the supreme wisdom which I was able to partially absorb but also for connecting me with many of these great musicians. I would also like to give a special thanks to Gio Blackmon, one of my dearest friends and someone who has been like a father to me. Gio not only recorded and produced this album, but has been there for me time and time again when I have needed him most.

1. Jaya
2. Black Narcissus
3. Late Bloomer
4. Time Remembered
5. Reflection
6. Heyoke

The Royal Krunk Jazz Orkestra - The Sirius Mystery opus 4 no​.​1 (August 6, 2021 Ropeadope Records)

Born In Chicago and raised in East St Louis Illinois, Russell Gunn is a Pan-African Composer, producer and Trumpeter. While his initial musical interest was American Hip-Hop, he has been celebrated as a Jazz trumpeter from his early years to this day. In High School Gunn was named best all around trumpet player in the country, in a field that included college and professional players. Gunn declined scholarships from major universities, including Berklee School Of Music, to attend Jackson State University, a historically Black University.

In 1993 Russell moved to New York, performing as a member of the Wynton Marsalis Big Band, Known now as Jazz At Lincoln Center. He was in the trumpet section with Marcus Printupo and Roger Ingram on the Pulitzer Prize winning Jazz Oratorio ‘Blood On The Fields’ (composed By Marsalis). His first recording was with the great alto Saxophonist and St Louis native Oliver Lake on the album ‘Tribute to Eric Dolphy’.

Russell Gunn has performed with the best in contemporary music: Oliver Lake, Branford Marsalis, Jazz at Lincoln Center, Maxwell, DʼAngelo, Angie Stone, Jimmy Heath, Roy Hargrove big band, Lou Reed, Cee Lo Green, Ne-Yo, Marcus Miller, Benny Golson, Young Jeezy, Joi, Les Nubian, and Harry Connick Jr. and many more. He has achieved two Grammy nominations for the albums Ethnomusicology Vol 1 and Vol 2

Gunn is the founder, composer, and director of contemporary big band ‘The Royal Krunk Jazz Orkestra’, with two releases to date - Get It How You Live, and Pyramids. Get It How You Live introduces us to the band, expressing their contemporary style and leading us toward Gunn's seminal work, a trilogy that represents the artist’s search to tell the expansive story of the African diaspora and the rich history it carries. Pyramids is the first in a three album set that carries us further into Gunn's world of discovery and expression. Pyramids delves (musically) into the true splendor of the Kemetic and Nubian peoples, whose accomplishments have been buried through years of rewritten European history.

In the second album, titled 'The Sirius Mystery'. Russell Gunn goes further into the concept of oral tradition that has been overwritten by the European technology. Following an ancestry tracing, Gunn found his roots in Mali, which piqued his interest in the country and specifically the Dogon (Kaado) people. People whose knowledge of space and planetary positions has stunned other African peoples, and has brought forth the ire of Euro-centric scholars eager to dispute that any knowledge could have pre-dated theirs. The intent is serious; Gunn is on a mission to contribute his knowledge, through art, to our further understanding for the world we have inherited. 
1. Sirius B - The Unseen Absolute (Intro)
2. The Dogon - Primordial Permanence
3. Amma's Egg - The Structure Of Matter
4. The Nummo Fish - Natatory Astronauts
5. (Bonus Track) Amma's Egg - The Structure Of Matter (Alternate Version)

Composed, Arranged, Orchestrated and conducted by - Russell Gunn
Special Guest - Wynton Marsalis (trumpet)

Vocals :
Dionne Farris
Dashill Smith

Trumpets :
1 - Lee King
2 - Melvin Jones
3 - Terence Harper
4 - Dashill Smith

Trombones :
1 - Derrick Jackson
2 - Derrick White
3 - Will Williams
4 - Tom Gibson

Saxophones :
Alto 1 - Mike Burton
Alto 2 - Marquinn Mason
Tenor 1 - Mike Walton
Tenor 2 - Fareed Mahluli
Baritone - Jamel Mitchell
Flute - Rasheeda Ali
Bass Clarinet – Dashill Smith

Rhythm Section :
Keyboards – Phil Davis
Piano - Kevin Bales
Bass - Tres Gilbert
Drums - Lil John Roberts (Left Channel)
Drums - Terreon Gully (Right Channel)
Guitar - Rod Harris Jr.
Percussion - Ali Barr

Additional Musicians (from original small group session)
Louis Heriveaux - Piano
Brian Hogans - Alto Sax
Morgan Guerin - EWI
Darren English - Trumpet
Delbert Felix - Acoustic Bass
Kebbi Williams - Tenor Sax

Produced by – Russell Gunn
Recorded By Michael Schenck and Phil Davis
Recorded in Atlanta Georgia, December 2020
Mixed By Russell Gunn and Dave Darlington
Mastered By Dave Darlington in New York City, January 2021
Cover art and design by Russell Gunn
Executive producer – Russell Gunn