Danny Bacher being featured in “Big Band to Bebop and Beyond” concert in NJ

“Big Band to Bebop and Beyond” – The New Jersey Jazz Society is celebrating its 45th anniversary!

When: Sunday, October 22, 3-6pm

Where: Dorothy Young Center for the Arts at Drew University in Madison, NJ.

Who: The line-up includes entirely New Jersey-based jazz musicians, such as Whaling City Sound’s Vocalist Danny Bacher.

Tickets: $30 in advance and $35 at the door for NJJS members; and $35 in advance and $40 at the door for non-members.

The proceeds from the concert are benefitting the NJ Jazz Society’s scholarships and its educational program, Generations of Jazz.

Purchase tickets here. Find out more about the event here and here.

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Wood and Strings is “Seventy minutes of clever, subtle, inventive music”

By: Leonid Auskern

For many years I have been listening to American guitarist John Stein (all his CDs are on Whaling City Sound and invariably fall into our “CD-Reviews”) and he never ceases to amaze with every new work. This time it’s a duet album, where bass player Dave Zinno is John’s partner.

The story of this project is told in the liner notes to the album by Stein himself (besides his notes, there is also a great text from John Thomas, not the first time commenting on Stein’s work). In 2016, Stein signed a contract for a month of performances at a restaurant in New Bedford, Massachusetts (the city where the Whaling City Sound label is based). John’s friend and label owner, Neal Weiss, recommended Dave Zinno as a duet partner. The two musicians “fused” so successfully, that the idea to record a joint album was born. Some of it was recorded live at the restaurant, in the morning before its official opening. Then a few weeks later, the musicians moved to Stein’s home studio, where they finished the work with the help of the classy sound engineer Antonio Oliart Ros. So the album “Wood and Strings” was born.

 
“Wood and strings” – that’s what John and Dave called it, meaning their instruments: guitar and double bass. I would call it “Strings and Fingers” rather: it was the touch of the sensitive, understanding, and able fingers of the musicians that gave birth to the magic miracle of this wonderful music. The album contains 14 songs: a few of Stein’s compositions, some standards, and one song of Zinno’s. The album can be savored as a delicious dish, if mainstream jazz is the “kitchen” you like. Stein has long been considered one of the foremost guitarists in this genre. In Dave Zinno, he found a worthy partner. “Up and at ‘Em” and “Switch-a-roo” (composed by Stein), and “Beatrice” by Sam Rivers are highlights. Of course, there was a place in the program for Brazilian jazz, a type of music for which Stein has very warm feelings: “Modinha” from de Moraes and Jobim fit the bill. Seventy minutes of clever, subtle, inventive music is “Wood and Strings,” at your service!
Image result for john stein wood and strings
To read the full review, translated click here 
To buy Wood and Strings, click here
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Alma Micic’s That Old Feeling has a “bold repertoire and compelling performance”

By: C. Michael Bailey

Serbian vocalist Alma Micic‘s 2014 Tonight (CTA Records) was a welcome addition to the jazz vocals discography because of its bold repertoire and compelling performance. Micic returns with a decidedly more focused and refined recording that mixes the new and old with her own original “Ne Zaboravi me” and Neil Young’s “Harvest Moon” with durable standbys, “That Old feeling” and “Blue Moon.” Micic is joined by guitarist and husband Rale Micic, bassist Corcoran Holt, drummer Jonathan Blake and vibraphonist Tom Beckham, the latter whose presence provides the recital a playful sepia patina. Both Micics and Beckham tear it up on “Moonglow” and then, “Cry Me a River” and “Honeysuckle Rose” in a triptych highlighting the first half of the 20th Century. Micic’s voice is red-wine complex with subtle notes of Eastern Europe. The best selection on the recording, easily, is “Estate” which the Micics perform as a duet. That Old Feeling is a fine follow-up to Tonight and precedes some doubtlessly fine.

To read the rest of the article click here

To buy That Old Feeling, click here

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O’s Place reviews Stein’s ‘Wood and Strings’ as “fresh and enjoyable”

John SteinWood and Strings  5/4

O’s Notes: This is a duo between guitarist John Stein and bassist Dave Zinno. It’s a combination of Wood & Strings that comes together really, really nicely. Whether they are playing proven standards or originals, it is fresh and enjoyable. The pair work well together finishing off each other’s phrases almost like a seasoned couple. Just sit back and enjoy the ride, it’s delightful!
Purchase the album here.
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Donahue plays alto, sax, and flugelhorn on his new album- review

By: Jack Bowers

People who have an aversion to bugs (do you know any?) may hesitate to purchase (or even review) an album whose title epitomizes the very thing they abhor. But even though multi-instrumentalist Miles Donahue‘s new album does nod to that often-despised creature and even includes a song by that name, there is more to it than that; one might even say that Donahue removed the most of the “bugs” from the studio before he and his colleagues started recording.

One of the reasons that Donahue, who plays alto sax, trumpet and flugelhorn on The Bug, isn’t more widely known is that he chose to raise a family in his native New England rather than seek his fame and fortune in a wider arena, although he did spend time in Europe almost two decades ago before resuming a career in education with performance as a sideline. As this album marks his debut for Whaling City Sound, Donahue helped assure its merit by assembling a blue-ribbon supporting cast that includes guitarist Mike Stern, pianist Tim Ray and drummer Ralph Peterson. Going one step further, Donahue asked one of his college classmates if he would be able to make the gig, and Jerry Bergonzi said yes, he would. Miles Donahue: The Bug

To read the full review, click here

To buy Miles Donahue’s new album, click here

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