D E N I S * P O O L E
‘You’ll Be Mine’ by Jonathan Fritzen from his latest release Diamonds. This soul drenched stunner features sensational vocals from Laila Adéle and is but one great cut in an album crammed full of them.
‘Sugar Free’ by The Jeff Lorber Fusion from the CD Now Is The Time. This, the best track on the album, has a jazzy soulful swagger, nice guitar from Paul Jackson Jr, killer bass from Jimmy Haslip and a vocal performance by Barcelona born and Florida based Irene B that is out of this world.
‘Tomorrow’s Promise’ by keyboard player Chris Geith from his fabulous new collection Island Of A Thousand Dreams. Geith’s music is full of glorious melodies and hugely accessible rhythms. It is as if every song tells a story and the inbuilt urgency of this selected tune really is something special.
‘Come Dancing’ by vocalist Lisa McClowry from her latest project Time Signatures. This hauntingly beautiful Jim Peterik composition is blessed with truly superb strings from Matt Mantell, Emily Mantell and Caroline Curtis. Indeed, it has all the attributes of being a real keeper.
‘The Road To Peace (A Prayer For Haiti)’ by Gerald Albright from his brand new CD Pushing The Envelope; Here, in magical companionship with the great George Duke, Albright delivers a groove that is entirely something to savor. Without doubt this is one of the coolest cuts you will find anywhere.
J E F F * D A N I E L S
Grover Washington Jr., Grover Live (Lightyear Records) (2010)
Eric Darius, On A Mission (Shanachie Entertainment) (2010)
Attila Molnar, Dreams (Catapult Records) (2009)
Kirk Whalum, The Gospel According To Jazz Chapter 3 (Rendezvous Records) (2010)
P E T E R * B O E H I
Chris Geith - Island Of A Thousand Dreams (2010)
This latest release by pianist Chris Geith sparkles with pretty melodies, cool grooves, top-notch musicianship and is definitely standing out from the crop of new releases. Very recommended!
Norman Brown - Sending My Love (2010)
This brand new album of guitarist Norman Brown delivers more of his trademark guitar playing, thankfully sticking to his tried formula of fluid guitar lines, warm, funky backdrops and catchy melodies. Quality throughout!
David Benoit - Earthglow (2010)
Pianist David Benoit is still going strong on his latest release which is full of memorable melodies, spirited playing and happy grooves, yielding a very satisfying piece of music. Thumbs up!
Eric Darius - On A Mission (2010)
Another corker of saxophonist Eric Darius who pulls all the stops on his newest release. Although the songs fusing jazz and hip hop don't work for me, his inclusion of Herbie Hancock's "Butterfly" featuring Rick Braun is a welcome highlight. One of the best young players on the scene!
Bob James - The Very Best Of (2009)
My nod to the past goes to this 2 CD set of Bob James which covers the whole career of this seminal pianist and arranger, starting out with his early CTI albums going to his current material featuring collaborations with David Sanborn, Earl Klugh and Kirk Whalum. The sound quality is not always stellar, but the music is simply ingenious!