What We're Listening To ** August 2011

P E T E R * B O E H I

Cindy Bradley - Unscripted (2011)
This is an absolute standout album by trumpet player Cindy Bradley, her tone is warm and soulful, while on the muted trumpet she delivers some sharp lines. The production is top notch, the players are excellent, and the material covers a lot of ground, from the catchy house track "Massive Transit" to her contemporary rendition of "Footprints" to my favorites, the introspective "You Don't Know What Love Is" and the slow burning "Inevitable". Gorgeous stuff!

Neamen - So Free (201)
Newcomer Neamen Lyles on sax delivers a great upbeat smooth jazz album full of catchy melodies, beautiful playing and excellent production. This is another standout album and I expect to hear a lot more from this gifted player in the future. Pure smooth jazz bliss!

Jessy J - Hot Sauce (2011)
Lovely sax player Jessy J comes up with another release which was produced by mentor Paul Brown, as expected it is a smooth, sexy, sultry and laid-back affair with the typical latin vibe, her playing reminds me of John Klemmer and Gato Barbieri at times, she is supported by some heavy weights like Joe Sample and Harvey Mason. Style and quality!

Brian Hughes - Fast Train To A Quiet Place (2011)
Guitarist Brian Hughes is often compared to Pat Metheny, but his music is definitely his own. This latest release is a very satisfying album with excellent guitar solos, beautiful melodies and top notch musicianship. The vibe is airy and the styles covered go from funky to latin to straight. Truly excellent!

Noriki - Dream Cruise (1984)
My nod to the past goes to Japanese keyboardist Soichi Noriki who did this classic album back in 1984 with an all Japanese cast, the music sounds like Stuff and Tom Scott, being in line with the Japanese tradition of perfect emulation of their US idols. Still a valid album I always love to return to.

J E F F * D A N I E L S

Pat Metheny, What's It All About (Nonesuch) (2011)

Andy Snitzer, Traveler (Native Language) (2011)

Joep Van Leeuwen, It Could Happen To You (iM Jazz EU) (2011)

Duane Parham, Motor City Sax Appeal (SaxVille Avenue Records) (2011)

Marcus Anderson, Now (Anderson Music, LLC) (2011)

D E N I S * P O O L E

�I Think About Amy�, the new maxi-single from sax-man Michael J Thomas. With both vocal and instrumental versions, this is a tune that blends the best elements of contemporary jazz and R&B with more pop orientated flavorings. Not only that, given Michael writes, plays alto and (on the vocal version) sings throughout, this memorable recording is a wonderful showcase for his undoubted versatility.

The shuffling, understated �Marseille� by Andy Snitzer, from his latest album Traveler. This is the best from what is a really wonderful collection and with a guitar solo from the currently ubiquitous Chuck Loeb, delivers sophisticated contemporary jazz of the very highest order.

�Midnight And You� by Nick Colionne from his blockbuster new release Feel The Heat. Sultry in a quiet storm kind of a way and with Colionne his usual immaculate self on both guitar and vocals, this is a song that is sure to make it into the list of top tracks for 2011.

�Rainbow Gold� by Jessy J from her current CD Hot Sauce. Written by Jessy and the legendary Joe Sample, this choice cut finds her on both on sax and vocals. Not only that, the piano induced intensity that Sample routinely generates is out of this world.

�It�s Tough In Here� by keyboard player Mike Di Lorenzo from his latest album Bring It Back. This joyously rhythmic cut sublimely defines the music of Di Lorenzo and in so doing serves as a metaphor for the entire collection.