START THE COUNTDOWN CLOCK!

18 Aug

Turntable For One returns to the air on August 30th at 10:00 PM (E.D.T.)

Click on the link below to hear the latest Turntable For One promo. 

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/43068547/TurntablePromo2014.mp3

Meanwhile, I’ve been listening to some interesting new music.  

  • Swing Fever – Grand Masters Of Jazz – For more than three decades, Swing Fever has been a fixture and the #1 swing band of the San Francisco  Bay Area. Okay, maybe it’s not as well-known as Coit Tower but this band swings harder than any Bay Area landmark you can name. On this 1-CD, 2-DVD compilation, the band has pulled together some of the great moments when it was joined by such jazz legends as Clark Terry, Buddy DeFranco, and Terry Gibbs. Plus, as an added and delightful bonus, a number of songs by Jackie Ryan. Culled from performances in the late 1990s and the early 2000s, Terry, DeFranco, and Gibbs performances are at full maturity. Jackie Ryan’s understanding of songs and singing would deepen even more after these appearances and with each of her solo CDs since then. Best surprise for me: Body And Soul with Jackie Ryan and Terry Gibbs. Seven minutes of magic!
  • Chiara Izzi – Motifs –  This is another Dot Time Records CD and another total winner. This is a label which takes chances on artists who need to be heard. Chiara and her trio of musicians are Italian, although they travelled to Switzerland to record this CD (better chocolate?). English is obviously not her first language. Yet she certainly must have found an incredible Rosetta course in swing. Her voice is sweet and strong, her trio doesn’t shrink behind her for a beat. Amidst some swinging standards (you gotta hear My Shining Hour!) and a jazz standard or two are several songs Chiara has written, just lyrics for two, music and lyrics for one. Best surprise for me: A ballad with Ciara’s lyrics in Italian called Signi del tempo. I can’t understand a word she sings, but I really don’t care. It’s charming and lovely. 
  • The John La Barbera Big Band – Caravan – Did the La Barbera brothers – John, Pat, Joe – have lots of fights when they were growing up? If this CD is any indication, life for the La Barbera boys must have been pretty harmonious. (I’m expecting a ton of complaints about that pun. Stay tuned to see if I ever express remorse.) This is just an old-fashioned Big Band Jazz album and they shout that loud and proud. Arranged by John with a third of the tunes written by him, there are also tunes by Kenny Barron, McCoy Tyner, and others, plus, of course, the Ellington and Tizol title tune. Plenty of solos by drummer/brother Joe and Tenor/soprano sax/brother Pat, but every seat in the band seems to be filled by stars, even if their names are not well known.  I first became aware of John and Pat with a Buddy Rich Big Band. Joe worked in Bill Evans’s last trio, worked with Tony Bennett, and with a list of other jazz luminaries as long as your arm – unless maybe you’re Kareem Abdul Jabar. Best surprise for me: Caravan – not because I’ve not heard the song before, but because John lets two of his trombonists stretch out like Gumbys. And I am a sucker for trombone solos. 

 

Remember: Turntable For One returns August 30th at 10:00 PM (E.D.T.) on WMNR Fine Arts Radio and wmnr.org.  You got that, right? 

If you want to get up to speed, why not try a Turntable For One podcast on PRX, the Public Radio Exchange? No pressure. I just didn’t want you to feel left out. 

http://www.prx.org/series/33284-turntable-for-one

 

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