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1. Blow Top Blues

Blow Top Blues

BARBARA MORRISON I Love You, Yes I Do Savant Records SCD 2136 Barbara Morrison, vocals With Houston Person, tenor saxophone Stuart Elster, piano • Richard Simon, bass • Lee Spath, drums Track Listing: Save Your Love For Me • Canadian Sunset • I Had a Talk With My Man Last Night • Trust in Me • I Didn't Know What Time It Was • Who Can I Turn To? • If It's the Last Thing I Do • Black Eyed Blues • I Love You, Yes I Do • And I Love Him • For the Love of You • Blow Top Blues Barbara Morrison has been featured on over 20 recordings choosing her repertoire from a wide array of genres from traditional jazz and blues to gospel and pop. Her powerful voice, with its two-and-a-half-octave range, allows Ms. Morrison to belt out down-home, soul-stirring blues in a manner which places her firmly in the tradition of Etta Jones, Helen Humes, Irene Reid, and Dinah Washington. Her impassioned renditions of favorite torch songs reveal a consummate musicianship and a firm grasp of a song’s deepest meaning. Over the years, Ms. Morrison has performed with legends such as Gerald Wilson, Dizzy Gillespie, Ray Charles, James Moody, Ron Carter, Etta James, Esther Phillips, Jimmy Smith, Dr. John, Kenny Burrell, Terence Blanchard, Joe Sample, Cedar Walton, Tony Bennett, and Keb’ Mo. On “I Love You, Yes I Do,” Ms. Morrison is once again partnered by the soulful tenor saxophone of Houston Person who brings his own unique brand of bluesy exuberance to the proceedings.

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2. Black Eyed Blues from Barbara Morrison's I LOVE YOU, YES I DO

Black Eyed Blues from Barbara Morrison's I LOVE YOU, YES I DO

BARBARA MORRISON I Love You, Yes I Do Savant Records SCD 2136 Barbara Morrison, vocals With Houston Person, tenor saxophone Stuart Elster, piano • Richard Simon, bass • Lee Spath, drums Track Listing: Save Your Love For Me • Canadian Sunset • I Had a Talk With My Man Last Night • Trust in Me • I Didn't Know What Time It Was • Who Can I Turn To? • If It's the Last Thing I Do • Black Eyed Blues • I Love You, Yes I Do • And I Love Him • For the Love of You • Blow Top Blues Barbara Morrison has been featured on over 20 recordings choosing her repertoire from a wide array of genres from traditional jazz and blues to gospel and pop. Her powerful voice, with its two-and-a-half-octave range, allows Ms. Morrison to belt out down-home, soul-stirring blues in a manner which places her firmly in the tradition of Etta Jones, Helen Humes, Irene Reid, and Dinah Washington. Her impassioned renditions of favorite torch songs reveal a consummate musicianship and a firm grasp of a song’s deepest meaning. Over the years, Ms. Morrison has performed with legends such as Gerald Wilson, Dizzy Gillespie, Ray Charles, James Moody, Ron Carter, Etta James, Esther Phillips, Jimmy Smith, Dr. John, Kenny Burrell, Terence Blanchard, Joe Sample, Cedar Walton, Tony Bennett, and Keb’ Mo. On “I Love You, Yes I Do,” Ms. Morrison is once again partnered by the soulful tenor saxophone of Houston Person who brings his own unique brand of bluesy exuberance to the proceedings.

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3. Silhouettes - from WHAT TIME IS IT? Savant Records SCD 2157

Silhouettes - from WHAT TIME IS IT?  Savant Records SCD 2157

GIACOMO GATES - What Time Is It? Savant Records SCD 2157 GIACOMO GATES, vocals • Jerry Weldon, tenor saxophone • John di Martino, piano • Tony Lombardozzi, guitar • Lonnie Plaxico, bass • Vincent Ector, drums TRACKS: I Didn't Know What Time It Was • On a Misty Night • Somebody Buy Me a Drink • Silhouettes • In Cognito • Mr. Kick • A Few Bucks Ahead • I Can't Help It • Disappointed • Spinnin' (Speedball) • Too Many Things Being a good jazz vocalist isn't easy, and simply releasing a CD doesn't prove competence. More than some genres, a voice that's technically good is almost a requirement. There are exceptions, but in this particular genre you don't find too many with an instrument like Leonard Cohen's. There's also the question of material. When it comes to the Great American Songbook, it's hard to give a fresh spin to tunes that were already popular in the first half of the 20th Century and never faded into obscurity. Usually the fault lies in the interpretations rather than the choices, with musicians creating uninspired arrangements of obvious material in a sad effort to seem relevant. Giacomo Gates avoids all of these pitfalls. He has a warm, intimate sound with the technical chops to do whatever he wants to with his voice and benefits from tasteful and uncluttered arrangements that allow him to draw in the listener with ingratiating humor, emotional insight, subtlety and exemplary musicianship. With John di Martino at the piano and Jerry Weldon's tenor sax out in front, the results never feel stilted and in fact Gates comes across as one of the most distinctive singers on the scene. His unique sense of phrasing and insinuating manner of delivering lyrics to songs like "On a Misty Night," "I Didn't Know What Time It Was," and "A Few Bucks Ahead" help assure him a place among today's top vocalists.

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4. BARBARA MORRISON - September in the Rain - from I WANNA BE LOVED Savant Records SCD 2164

BARBARA MORRISON - September in the Rain - from I WANNA BE LOVED Savant Records SCD 2164

BARBARA MORRISON I Wanna Be Loved Savant Records SCD 2164 Barbara Morrison, vocals Houston Person, tenor saxophone Stuart Elster, piano Richard Simon, bass • Lee Spath, drums TRACKS: Perdido • I Wanna Be Loved • This Time the Dream’s On Me • I’ll Close My Eyes • Shiny Stockings • Skylark • Work • When Sunny Gets Blue • Please Send Me Someone to Love • September in the Rain • Make Me a Present of You Barbara Morrison, one of the world's most delightful and endearing jazz personalities returns to the recording studio and brings her good friend, tenor saxophonist Houston Person with her for her third recording on Savant Records. Her patented Music in the Morrison Manner, featuring blues, standards and even an occasional pop tune, has endeared her to audiences on both coasts and earned her a place among the most talented and skilled jazz vocalists working today. Morrison's delivery and vivaciousness has the ability to charm listeners while her timing and intonation are virtually flawless and the subtle perfection of her phrasing evokes the great vocalists of the past. The spirit of Dinah Washington hovers over this recording with many of the Great Lady's tunes receiving a Morrison Makeover while Houston Person weaves his husky-toned arabesques around the timeless melodies.

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5. Four In One from Pat Bianchi's "In the Moment" Savant SCD 2173

Four In One from Pat Bianchi's

PAT BIANCHI - In the Moment Savant Records SCD 2173 Pat Bianchi, organ Paul Bollenback, guitar • Byron Landham, drums TRACK LINTING & GUEST ARTISTS 1. Humpty Dumpty 3:41 w/ Joe Locke & Carmen Intorre, Jr 2. Blue Gardenia 7:20 w/ Peter Bernstein 3. Don't You Worry ‘Bout a Thing 7:31 4. Mr. PM 3:45 w/ Pat Martino & Carmen Intorre, Jr 5. Barracudas 7:47 6. Crazy 5:24 7. No Expectations 6:52 8. I Want to Talk About You 5:42 w/ Kevin Mahogany 9. Fall 7:10 w/ Joe Locke & Carmen Intorre, Jr 10. Four in One 4:28 w/ Joe Locke & Carmen Intorre, Jr Capable of everything from vibrato-laden intimate murmurings to sermonizing at a roaring volume, the jazz organ can sometimes be strangely dispiriting - like being stuck at a bar with a non-stop talker. PAT BIANCHI will have none of that, eschewing all the clichés and displaying the instrument’s versatility with a setlist that ranges from Chick Corea to Patsy Cline to Monk and Billy Eckstine. For this, Bianchi’s first recording on Savant, the leader has brought along a number of friends and colleagues including PAT MARTINO, JOE LOCKE, CARMEN INTORRE, JR. the late, lamented KEVIN MAHOGANY and others making for an extra-special debut recording.

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8. Confirmation from Frank Morgan and George Cables' "Montreal Memories" HighNote Records HCD 7320

Confirmation from Frank Morgan and George Cables'

FRANK MORGAN & GEORGE CABLES Montreal Memories HighNote Records HCD 7320 Frank Morgan, alto saxophone George Cables, piano TRACK LISTING 1. Now's the Time 6:30 2. All the Things You Are 7:02 3. A Night in Tunisia 7:46 4. ‘Round Midnight 5:31 5. Confirmation 4:59 6. Blues for Rosalinda 8:27 7. Helen's Song 8:24 8. Lullaby 5:03 9. Nefertiti / Billie's Bounce 7:23 Jazz duo recordings can provide an exceedingly wide range of musical expression including but not limited to, profundity, humor, tenderness, introspection, exuberance and a whole host of others which can all change at the drop of a flatted-fifth. This type of mercurial interplay is on full display on this live gig from the Théatre Port-Royal in Montreal, Canada. Morgan and Cables played together frequently and their improvising is imbued with an almost telepathic communication. Cables’ large piano tone is the perfect accompaniment to Morgan’s slightly dry, Bird-like sound. At the same time, their spontaneity and sheer joy of music making succeeds in even making the chestnut “All the Things You Are” sound fresh and newly wrought.

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9. Theme from Chico and the Man

Theme from Chico and the Man

RUSSELL MALONE - Time for the Dancers HighNote Records HCD 7305 UPC BARCODE: 6 32375 7305 2 9 Russell Malone, guitar Rick Germanson, piano Luke Sellick, bass Willie Jones III, drums Tracks: Time for the Dancers • Leave It to Lonnie • The Ballad of Hank Crawford • There'll Be Another Spring • Pocket Watch • Theme from “Chico and the Man” • And So It Goes • Little B's Poem • Flowers for Emmett Till With this, his third outing as a leader on HighNote guitar master Russell Malone returns with his talented quartet, featuring the potent pianism of Rick Germanson, the solid underpinnings of Luke Sellick on bass, and drummer-extraordinaire Willie Jones III. Malone possesses phenomenal technique, a warm luminous tone, an innate sense of swing, and his distinctive chording. The set consists of a wide range of songs including funk, ballads, uptempo hard bop performances and even a pop tune and a TV theme. Malone varies the instrumental textures and tone colors throughout to reveal his considerable inventive melodic art. This latest recording is further proof that Russell Malone is one of the top guitarists in jazz, here backed by a superb trio of masterful musicians.

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10. The Spin Doctor

The Spin Doctor

BLACK ART JAZZ COLLECTIVE - Armor of Pride HighNote Records HCD 7313 Black Art Jazz Collective Wayne Escoffery, tenor saxophone Jeremy Pelt, trumpet • James Burton III, trombone Xavier Davis, piano Vicente Archer, bass • Johnathan Blake, drums Track Listing: 1. Miller Time 7:25 2. Armor of Pride 6:52 3. Awuura Amma 6:47 4. The Spin Doctor 4:56 5. And There She Was, Lovely as Ever 3:16 6. Pretty 5:19 7. When Will We Learn 5:18 8. Black Art 5:26 The Black Art Jazz Collective's mission statement celebrates African-American cultural and political icons. At the core is a modernism that conjures up the classic bands of Art Blakey and acoustic Miles Davis. But with the contemporary soul-fuelled solos and locked-in rhythm the band is more likely to launch into a counterpoint riff or the spacious funk of hip-hop than the svelte lines of a classic walking bass. The Black Art Jazz Collective delivers strong original tunes and purposeful, form-hugging improvisation that keeps things looking forward rather than back. And with trumpeter Jeremy Pelt on ebullient form, and saxophonist Wayne Escoffery's muscularity contrasting with the tenderness of James Burton III's trombone, the focus never becomes diffuse or wavers.

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11. 6. Mr. Kicks

6. Mr. Kicks

GIACOMO GATES - What Time Is It? Savant Records SCD 2157 GIACOMO GATES, vocals • Jerry Weldon, tenor saxophone • John di Martino, piano • Tony Lombardozzi, guitar • Lonnie Plaxico, bass • Vincent Ector, drums TRACKS: I Didn't Know What Time It Was • On a Misty Night • Somebody Buy Me a Drink • Silhouettes • In Cognito • Mr. Kick • A Few Bucks Ahead • I Can't Help It • Disappointed • Spinnin' (Speedball) • Too Many Things Being a good jazz vocalist isn't easy, and simply releasing a CD doesn't prove competence. More than some genres, a voice that's technically good is almost a requirement. There are exceptions, but in this particular genre you don't find too many with an instrument like Leonard Cohen's. There's also the question of material. When it comes to the Great American Songbook, it's hard to give a fresh spin to tunes that were already popular in the first half of the 20th Century and never faded into obscurity. Usually the fault lies in the interpretations rather than the choices, with musicians creating uninspired arrangements of obvious material in a sad effort to seem relevant. Giacomo Gates avoids all of these pitfalls. He has a warm, intimate sound with the technical chops to do whatever he wants to with his voice and benefits from tasteful and uncluttered arrangements that allow him to draw in the listener with ingratiating humor, emotional insight, subtlety and exemplary musicianship. With John di Martino at the piano and Jerry Weldon's tenor sax out in front, the results never feel stilted and in fact Gates comes across as one of the most distinctive singers on the scene. His unique sense of phrasing and insinuating manner of delivering lyrics to songs like "On a Misty Night," "I Didn't Know What Time It Was," and "A Few Bucks Ahead" help assure him a place among today's top vocalists.

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12. Miller Time

Miller Time

BLACK ART JAZZ COLLECTIVE - Armor of Pride HighNote Records HCD 7313 Black Art Jazz Collective Wayne Escoffery, tenor saxophone Jeremy Pelt, trumpet • James Burton III, trombone Xavier Davis, piano Vicente Archer, bass • Johnathan Blake, drums Track Listing: 1. Miller Time 7:25 2. Armor of Pride 6:52 3. Awuura Amma 6:47 4. The Spin Doctor 4:56 5. And There She Was, Lovely as Ever 3:16 6. Pretty 5:19 7. When Will We Learn 5:18 8. Black Art 5:26 The Black Art Jazz Collective's mission statement celebrates African-American cultural and political icons. At the core is a modernism that conjures up the classic bands of Art Blakey and acoustic Miles Davis. But with the contemporary soul-fuelled solos and locked-in rhythm the band is more likely to launch into a counterpoint riff or the spacious funk of hip-hop than the svelte lines of a classic walking bass. The Black Art Jazz Collective delivers strong original tunes and purposeful, form-hugging improvisation that keeps things looking forward rather than back. And with trumpeter Jeremy Pelt on ebullient form, and saxophonist Wayne Escoffery's muscularity contrasting with the tenderness of James Burton III's trombone, the focus never becomes diffuse or wavers.

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13. 12 Turkish Rondo

12 Turkish Rondo

CYRUS CHESTNUT - Kaleidoscope HighNote Records HCD 7317 Cyrus Chestnut, piano Eric Wheeler, bass Chris Beck, drums TRACKS 1. Golliwog's Cakewalk 5:02 2. Darn That Dream 5:06 3. Gymnopedie No. 1 6:15 4. Entre cloches 5:44 5. Jimbo's Lullaby 5:26 6. Father Time 5:29 7. Lord I Want to Be a Christian 4:28 8. Son binocle 4:04 9. Smoke on the Water 4:33 10. Gnossienne No. 1 6:57 11. Gymnopedie No. 3 4:07 12. Turkish Rondo 3:37 13. Prayer for Claudine 5:13

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14. Time for the Dancers

Time for the Dancers

RUSSELL MALONE - Time for the Dancers HighNote Records HCD 7305 UPC BARCODE: 6 32375 7305 2 9 Russell Malone, guitar Rick Germanson, piano Luke Sellick, bass Willie Jones III, drums Tracks: Time for the Dancers • Leave It to Lonnie • The Ballad of Hank Crawford • There'll Be Another Spring • Pocket Watch • Theme from “Chico and the Man” • And So It Goes • Little B's Poem • Flowers for Emmett Till With this, his third outing as a leader on HighNote guitar master Russell Malone returns with his talented quartet, featuring the potent pianism of Rick Germanson, the solid underpinnings of Luke Sellick on bass, and drummer-extraordinaire Willie Jones III. Malone possesses phenomenal technique, a warm luminous tone, an innate sense of swing, and his distinctive chording. The set consists of a wide range of songs including funk, ballads, uptempo hard bop performances and even a pop tune and a TV theme. Malone varies the instrumental textures and tone colors throughout to reveal his considerable inventive melodic art. This latest recording is further proof that Russell Malone is one of the top guitarists in jazz, here backed by a superb trio of masterful musicians.

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15. Nardis from CYRUS CHESTNUT - "There's a Sweet, Sweet Feeling"

Nardis  from CYRUS CHESTNUT -

Cyrus Chestnut, piano • Buster Williams, bass • Lenny White, drums • Steve Nelson, vibraphone AVAILABLE IN JULY 2017

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16. Blues for DP - from HOUSTON PERSON & RON CARTER -- Remember Love

Blues for DP - from HOUSTON PERSON & RON CARTER -- Remember Love

HOUSTON PERSON & RON CARTER Remember Love HighNote Records HCD 7315 Over twenty-five years ago, this duo began their first collaboration with an album entitled Something In Common. Six releases later they remain committed to the format, but with time on their side they have become empathetic and open-minded colleagues. In this session of standards, the tunes have been culled from the American Songbook with the intention of providing unabashed look at life, love youth and beauty. Person's tenor tone is smooth, warm and easygoing, and the duo format brings out his romantic side. Carter, meanwhile, is in complete charge of the music's harmony and rhythm, well aware of the manifold accompaniment possibilities each tune presents, and able to move seamlessly between an astounding number of those possibilities. So if you want to hear two masters at work, playing off and for each other, this is the place to be.

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17. Obama Samba

Obama Samba

Bill O'Connell BILL O’CONNELL - Jazz Latin Savant Records SCD 2172 Bill O’Connell - piano, Fender Rhodes Lincoln Goines, electric bass • Robby Ameen, drums Special Guests: Randy Brecker, flugelhorn • Craig Handy, saxophone • Conrad Herwig, trombone • Andrea Brachfeld, flute • Dan Carillo, guitar TRACKS: Obama Samba • Just One of Those Things • It's OK • Footprints • Goodbye My Friend • Quicksand • Tip Toes • Puttin’ on the Ritz • Mom's Song • Zingaro • What Is This Bill O’Connell’s pianism has always been known for its razor-sharp rhythmic sense, clean articulation and phrasing which is as affectionate as it is unfussy. And although the idiom often demands fire and verve one must never lose sight of O’Connell’s graceful dynamics which give his lines interesting twists and turns that dart and swerve with spontaneous freedom. With friends like Randy Brecker, Craig Handy, Conrad Herwig, Andrea Brachfeld and Dan Carillo on hand, Jazz Latin is more than a release, it is an event.

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18. Frenesi - From Charlie Sepúlveda - Songs for Nat

Frenesi - From Charlie Sepúlveda - Songs for Nat

Charlie Sepúlveda and the Turnaround Songs for Nat HighNote Records HCD 7316 Puerto Rican trumpeter Charlie Sepúlveda has been a fixture of the Latin jazz world since the late 1980s when he played in the band of pianist and composer Eddie Palmieri. During the 1990s, a renaissance period for el jazz Latino, the brassman toured and recorded with an array of great artists including Tito Puente and the Golden Latin Jazz All Stars, Dizzy Gillespie and the United Nation Orchestra, Wynton Marsalis, Hilton Ruiz, Steve Turre, Dave Valentin, Danilo Pérez, and Paul Simon among others. He launched his own group, The Turnaround, 25 years ago, and has been turning the tables on the traditional Latin jazz format ever since.

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