Jazz Institute of Chicago

Reviews

Famoudou Don Moye/Tatsu Aoki: A Symphony Of Cities

amoudou Don Moye/Tatsu Aoki: A Symphony Of Cities

Percussionist Famoudou Don Moye's claim to fame comes from his long tenure with the Art Ensemble of Chicago. Although not a founding member, his contributions grew more substantial over the years as the last AEC performances in Chicago bore witness. Unfortunately, he has rarely been given the opportunity to record under his own name, which makes the release of A Symphony Of Cities all the more welcome.

Ryan Cohan: Here and Now

Ryan Cohan's recording debut as a leader is an impressive one on his CD Here and Now. Cohan has been an active participant on the jazz scene since his graduation from DePaul in 1993.

Nicole Mitchell:/Black Earth Ensemble: Vision Quest

Nicole Mitchell:/Black Earth Ensemble: Vision Quest

The Black Earth Ensemble is a work-in-progress, a constantly evolving project flautist Niki Mitchell started a couple years ago with a core group composed of bassist Darius Savage and violinist Savoir Faire who is also featured on the viola. As such, it is also a project which brings the next generation of the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (AACM) to the forefront.

Tatsu Aoki: The Miyumi Project

Tatsu Aoki: The Miyumi Project

Frank Catalano: Pins 'N' Needles

Frank Catalano: Pins 'N' Needles

Hinda Hoffman: Moon and Sand

Hinda Hoffman: Moon and Sand

In today's climate of over-praised "Divas" who are long on style and short on substance, Hinda Hoffman is a welcomed fresh breeze. Hoffman's easy phrasing and sincere, unaffected approach sustain your interest over a 65 minute program. Hoffman chooses a program that plays to her strengths (there is no obligatory blues here) and the medley of two Strayhorn songs is a highlight—featuring new lyrics by the late Gene Esposito.

Paul Wertico Trio: Don't Be Scared Anymore

Paul Wertico Trio: Don't Be Scared Anymore

A versatile drummer, Paul Wertico summarizes his various musical experiences on "Don't Be Scared Anymore", a trio date with guitarist John Moulder and bassist Eric Hochberg. Despite the variety of styles and the fact that compositional duties are shared, Mr. Wertico must be credited for making a coherent record with a unique sound. Paying tribute to the power trios of the late sixties-early seventies was surely on Mr. Wertico's mind, but he manages to avoid the pitfalls of the genre: no purposeless solo or battle of the egos.

Mike Ferro: Django by Ferro

Mike Ferro: Django by Ferro

This album was a complete surprise and an absolute gem. Mike and Linda Ferro were so captivated by the music and legend of Django Reinhardt that they wrote lyrics to his music. So the music is both fresh and respectful to Django's "Hot Club of Paris."

Sergio Pires: Umbigo

Sergio Pires: Umbigo

Sergio Pires is the other Brasilian guitarist/vocalist troubadour that now calls Chicago home. This is an adventurous album of original music that incorporates the samba, bossa, baiao, a little reggae and many other MPB ("musica popular brasileira") drum grooves that are becoming more familiar to the jazz and world audiences.

Joan Hickey: Soulmates, featuring Buster Williams

Joan Hickey: Soulmates, featuring Buster Williams

This is an interesting album from pianist Joan Hickey with two equally strong trios and trumpeter Jeff Helgesen rounding it out to a quartet on two tracks. Dennis Carroll and George Fludas on bass and drums respectively open the program. NYC bassist Buster Williams guests on five of the eleven tracks along with Joel Spencer on drums.

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