Monthly Mixtape

February 2024

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  1. “The Cell” by Peter Evans from the album “Being & Becoming: Ars Memoria” features Evans’ avant-garde trumpet playing. Known for his experimental approach to jazz, Evans uses extended techniques to explore the sonic possibilities of the trumpet, creating a complex and engaging soundscape. The track showcases Evans’ ability to push the boundaries of traditional jazz, supported by a talented ensemble including Joel Ross (vibraphone, and percussion), Nick Jozwiak (bass), and Michael Shekwoaga Ode drums). More info: https://peterevansmusic.bandcamp.com/album/ars-memoria
  1. “Debussy: Children’s Corner, L. 113: 4. The snow is dancing” performed by Jacques Février from the album Colors of Classical – Impressionism captures the delicate and whimsical nature of falling snow through light, fluttering piano passages. Février, a renowned French pianist, is celebrated for his interpretations of Debussy’s works, bringing out the nuanced textures and colors in this impressionistic piece.
  1. “Sherbet (Just to Be Certain That the Doubt Stays on Our Side of the Fence)” by Gregg August from the album Dialogues on Race is a contemporary jazz composition exploring themes of social justice and racial equality. August, a bassist and composer, blends traditional jazz elements with modern sensibilities.
    The track features:
    John Ellis -Soprano Saxophone
    Bruce Williams-Alto Saxophone
    JD Allen-Tenor Saxophone
    Ken Thomson-Bass Clarinet
    John Bailey-Trumpet/Flugelhorn
    Rafi Malkiel-Trombone/Euphonium
    Marcus Rojas-Tuba
    Luis Perdomo-Piano
    Gregg August-Bass/Composer
    Donald Edwards-Drums
    Mauricio Herrera-Congas/Shekeré/Castanets

    More Info: https://www.greggaugust.com/

  1. “Prélude à l’après-midi d’un faune, CD 87, L. 86” performed by Paul Tortelier and Susan Milan from the album Debussy: Clair de lune and Other Masterpieces is a symphonic poem by Claude Debussy. This performance features Tortelier on cello and Milan on flute, creating an ethereal and dreamy atmosphere. Both musicians are renowned for their expressive interpretations and technical skill, bringing Debussy’s vision to life.
  1. “Debussy: Children’s Corner, L. 113: 5. The little shepherd” performed by Jacques Février from the album A Night of Classical: French Composers evokes pastoral scenes with its gentle, flowing melodies and impressionistic harmonies. Février’s sensitive touch and deep understanding of Debussy’s music create a captivating and intimate performance.
  1. “Madness” by Miles Davis from the album The Complete Columbia Studio Recordings Of The Miles Davis Quintet January 1965 To June 1968 features Davis’ innovative trumpet playing. Known for his contributions to modal jazz and jazz fusion, Davis is joined by Wayne Shorter on tenor saxophone, Herbie Hancock on piano, Ron Carter on bass, and Tony Williams on drums. This lineup, known as the Second Great Quintet, is celebrated for its groundbreaking approach and cohesive interplay.
  1. “Riot” by Miles Davis from the album The Complete Columbia Studio Recordings Of The Miles Davis Quintet January 1965 To June 1968 is an energetic and rhythmically complex piece. Davis’ quintet, featuring Wayne Shorter, Herbie Hancock, Ron Carter, and Tony Williams, delivers a powerful performance, pushing the boundaries of post-bop jazz with their innovative and collaborative approach.
  1. “Riot” by Herbie Hancock from the album Speak Like A Child is a different interpretation of the same composition. Hancock, a pioneering jazz pianist and composer, brings his unique style to the piece. The track features Ron Carter on bass, Mickey Roker on drums, and a horn section including Thad Jones on flugelhorn, Peter Phillips on bass trombone, and Jerry Dodgion on alto flute, creating a rich and textured sound.
  1. “Eternal One” by Wallace Roney from the album “Village” showcases Roney’s virtuosic trumpet playing. Influenced by Miles Davis, Roney blends traditional jazz elements with contemporary sounds. The track features an impressive lineup, including Antoine Roney (saxophone), Geri Allen (piano), Robert “Baabe” Irving III (synthesizer), Clarence Seay (bass), Lenny White (drums), and Steve Berrios (percussion), delivering a performance that is both soulful and innovative.
  1. “Trane” by Lakecia Benjamin from the album Phoenix is a tribute to John Coltrane. Benjamin, a talented saxophonist, channels Coltrane’s spirit through her powerful and expressive playing. The track features Victor Gould (piano), EJ Strickland (drums), Ivan Taylor (bass), providing a strong rhythmic foundation that complements Benjamin’s dynamic saxophone lines.
  1. “Countdown” by Roberto Tarenzi, from the album Roberto Tarenzi Trio Live is a high-energy jazz piece. Pianist Roberto Tarenzi, bassist Dario Deidda, and drummer Roberto Pistolesi display their tight interplay and technical proficiency, creating an engaging and dynamic live performance that highlights their individual and collective talents.
  1. “The Peacocks” by Herbie Hancock from the album ‘Round Midnight – Original Motion Picture Soundtrack is a beautiful, lyrical piece featuring Hancock’s sensitive piano playing. The track captures the essence of the jazz ballad with its lush harmonies and expressive melodies. It features Wayne Shorter on saxophone, Pierre Michelot on bass, and Billy Higgins on drums, delivering a performance full of emotional depth and nuance. Beautiful stuff.
  1. Red River Revel” by Brian Blade from the album Brian Blade Fellowship showcases Blade’s exceptional drumming and compositional skills. The piece blends elements of jazz, folk, and gospel, creating a rich and evocative sound. Blade is supported by an ensemble including Jon Cowherd on piano, Myron Walden on alto saxophone, Melvin Butler on tenor saxophone, and Chris Thomas on bass, creating a cohesive and immersive musical experience.
  1. Give Blood” by Pete Townshend from the album White City: A Novel is a rock track featuring Townshend’s powerful guitar playing and socially conscious lyrics. Known for his work with The Who, Townshend brings his signature style to this solo piece, supported by a talented band including Simon Phillips on drums, Pino Palladino on bass, and David Gilmour on guitar, and John “Rabbit” Bundrick on keyboards. When Townshend was asked about the song he said:
    “Give Blood was one of the tracks I didn’t even play on. I brought in Simon Phillips, Pino Palladino and David Gilmour simply because I wanted to see my three favourite musicians of the time playing on something and, in fact, I didn’t have a song for them to work on, and sat down very, very quickly and rifled threw [sic] a box of stuff, said to Dave, “Do one of those kind of ricky-ticky-ricky-ticky things, and I’ll shout ‘Give Blood!’ in the microphone every five minutes and let’s see what happens.” And that’s what happened. Then I constructed the song around what they did.”

    Pino kills on this.

  1. “Glassworks: I. Opening” by Philip Glass and the Philip Glass Ensemble from the album Glassworks – Expanded Edition is a minimalist composition. Glass’s repetitive and gradually evolving patterns create a hypnotic and meditative atmosphere. The Philip Glass Ensemble, featuring key members like Jon Gibson on woodwinds and Michael Riesman on keyboards, delivers a precise and compelling performance.
  1. “Chanela” by Paco de Lucía from the album Entre Dos Aguas is a flamenco piece showcasing de Lucía’s virtuosic guitar playing. Known for his technical brilliance and emotional depth, de Lucía blends traditional flamenco with jazz and classical influences. The track features contributions from musicians such as Ramón de Algeciras on second guitar and Rubem Dantas on percussion, enhancing the rich, rhythmic texture.
  1. “Smells Like Teen Spirit” by Niels Lan Doky, Bill Evans, Harvey Mason, and Darryl Jones from the album “Modern Standards” is a jazz interpretation of Nirvana’s iconic grunge anthem. Pianist Niels Lan Doky, saxophonist Bill Evans, drummer Harvey Mason, and bassist Darryl Jones bring a fresh perspective to the piece, transforming it into a sophisticated and engaging jazz composition.
  1. “Heart Shaped Box” by Yaron Herman Trio from the album “Follow the White Rabbit” is another jazz reinterpretation of a Nirvana song. Herman’s piano playing, combined with the trio’s dynamic interplay, creates a compelling and emotional rendition of the grunge classic. The trio, featuring Chris Tordini on bass and Tommy Crane on drums, delivers a performance that is both innovative and respectful to the original.
  1. “Riot (Live at Konigin Elizabethzaal, Antwerp, Belgium – October 1967)” by Miles Davis from the album Miles Davis Quintet: Live In Europe 1967: The Bootleg Series, Vol. 1 captures a live performance of the earlier mentioned piece. The quintet’s lineup, featuring Wayne Shorter on saxophone, Herbie Hancock on piano, Ron Carter on bass, and Tony Williams on drums, showcases their raw energy and spontaneity, making this live recording a powerful and historic jazz performance.