Author Archives: hildy

Chuck Owen and the Jazz Surge-Whispers on the Wind [Mama Records]

A full array of sounds from composer/arranger Chuck Owen.  Harmonica, violin, accordion, hammered dulcimer, dobro – unusual instrumentation adds to the interest here.  Try #2,5 – try any.

Charles Thomas-The Colors Of A Dream [Sea Tea Music]

All songs but #5 are written by bassist Charles Thomas.  Good driving energy throughout here.  And even if they aren’t old, these are old pros at ease and enjoying themselves.  Play them all and enjoy!  The only vocal:  Charles Thomas singing “My Foolish Heart.”

Robinson Morse’s Sounds of Mind-Enough Is Plenty [Recombination Records]

Rich orchestral sound with a dose of fusion, ethnic stuff (2), .  Good title cut, also #1,8.

Dave Potter-You Already Know [Summit Records]

Drummer Dave Potter knows how to put together a great ensemble – full-bodied classic jazz, a tight sound with stop-on-a-dime precision.  Vibes add a nice touch (Jason Marsalas).  Check out cuts 3,6,7.

Markley And Balmer-Standards And Covers [Soona Songs, Inc.]

Lisa Markley and Bruce Balmer both play guitar.  Markley sings.  Her voice and style will grow on you – unaffected simplicity, no flashy gizmos.  Favorites:  #6,7,8,9.  Note:  #5 is another title? for “A Day in the Life of a Fool.”

Gerald Beckett-Oblivion [Summit Records]

Very Brazilian sounding and relaxed and hip.  Beckett is a great flute player.  Favorites:  cuts 2,3,5.

The U.S. Army Blues-Swinging in the Holidays [Summit Records]

Classic Christmas tunes, lush orchestral sound, dynamic arrangements and swinging in the right places.  Nice vocals (Christal Rheams).  Enjoy!

Stephanie Patton-A Breath of Spring [Summit Records]

Nice smoky quality in Patton’s voice and a great selection of classic jazz tunes.  Favorites:  cuts #7,5,6.

Keith Karns Big Band-An Eye on the Future [Summit Records]

Big band, good energy, outre arrangements by Karns.  Check it out!

Rick Davies – Rick Davies Thugtet

Davies, Rick  (Emlyn Music)  Rick Davies Thugtet.   Fourth CD of original tunes from this local Latin jazz musician who died in late 2015.  Great musicians from both sides of Lake Champlain.  Thugtet is based in Plattsburgh; Alex Stewart (sax) and Ray Vega (trumpet) from UVM sat in on the recording.  Great energy in the music […]

Guy Klucevsek – Teetering on the Verge of Normalcy

  Guy Klucevsek  (Starkland Records)  Teetering on the Verge of Normalcy.  This is not your polka party accordion.  The songs and performances are passionate (2,14,17) and Klesmeresque (15, etc.) and more in the European tradition of accordion.  Klucevsek, American-born, has performed internationally and has composed for the solo accordion as well as for music groups […]

Hyeseon Hong Jazz Orchestra with Rich Perry and Ingrid Jensen – EE‑Ya‑Gi (Stories) [Mama Records]

Hyeseon (pronounced Hay-Sun) is clearly on a journey of exploration with her debut album, incorporating diverse elements into this collection:  a slightly retro and Asian take (#1), a fusion feel at the start of #2, a Latin feel (#3), jazzifying a Korean folk melody in #4, the nonverbal choralizing in #5 evoking film scores from […]

Craig Fraedrich with Trilogy and Friends – All Through the Night [Summit Records]

Good, tight sound and focused energy from the group, great dynamic together. Christal Rheams is a no-nonsense singer who means what she sings with a rich contralto voice (nice take on “All Through the Night”).  The songs are heartfelt choices of the group.  Two originals by Fraedrich (5, 8) are instrumentals.

Randy Brecker, Dick Oatts, Latvian Radio Big Band – Big Band Minimalism: Works of Mats Holmquist [Mama Records]

Take No Prisoners! Holmquist goes all out with this album of original works.  A sharp clean big band with featured soloists Randy Brecker (trumpet) and Dick Oatts (a/s sax).  Wonderful-to-listen-to rhythmic flows, from the boisterous “Quick Ride…” to the plaintive “Ballade” to the ultimately joyous “Stevie R.”  Underlying all is a powerful energy.  Thoughtful, enjoyable […]

Scott Routenberg Trio – Every End Is a Beginning (Summit Records)

All but #9 are original compositions by pianist Routenberg. One sign of a good group is that musicians’ performances stand out but never “poke” out.  The smaller the group, the harder it becomes.  This trio is on the money.  Effortless and in command of the music.  Routenberg’s music offers a nice array of contemplitude (1,8), […]