Yao's quintet, now dubbed "Triceratops" (you'll understand why in a moment) has a new recording. "How We Do" (See Tao Records). The long-extinct beast that gives the band its name is known for its three big horns; the "front line" includes Yao with Billy Drewes (alto saxophone, soprano saxophone) and long-time associate Jon Irabagon (tenor saxophone - he's appeared on each one of the trombonist's four albums). The solid and exciting "back line" features bassist Peter Brendler and drummer Mark Ferber.
|Photo: Peter Koloff|
For my money, there's not a weak moment to be heard in the 49-minute program. The music swings, saunters then struts (dig "Doin' The Thing"), soothes (the lovely "Circular Path", a track that features an emotional soprano sax solo with counterpoint from trombone), and closes with sly pizazz of the afore-mentioned "Tea for T." John Yao's Triceratops makes the kind of music that will never go extinct – it's fun, interactive, and crackles with creativity!
For more information, go to www.johnyao.com.
Here's the delightful opening cut:
|Photo: Sara Pettinella|
|Photo: Sara Pettinella|
John Lewis's bebop masterwork "Milestones", composed for Miles Davis's All-Stars with Charlie Parker, brings the program to a close on a springy set of steps. The composer played on the 1947 version; the original is not played at that frantic pace that other bebop tunes of the day were. It certainly fits Miles style of playing and there is no solo from Bird. On the Dease album, the pace is similar but the beat is a bit looser, more buoyant. Delightful solos all around from Ms Rosnes, the trombonist, Wilson (alto sax), Brendler, and Ferber. It's certainly a sweet take on a classic.
"Never More Here" is a fine edition to the discography of Michael Dease. It feels just right on a cold Autumn evening – check it out!
For more information, go to www.michaeldease.com.
Here's that opening track:
"Selfish Shellfish" takes the program out in a quirky and quite thumping fashion. The Bates Brothers rhythm section set the pace, one that leads to a rapid-fire bass solo and a John Bonham-style drum solo. The song ends with the Quartet vocally riffing on the title and a bit more.
Keratonus, the progressive eye disease, is not contagious but "Keratonus", the JC Sanford Quartet album, is often quite infectious. Much of the music is filled with humor plus the feeling that these four musicians are having a great time making music. Even the one "standard", "All The Things You Are", moves in a jaunty manner. Life is short, why not have fun? Umm, Yeah!
For more information, go to www.jcsanford.com.
Here's a taste and the opportunity to purchase the album: