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This Week at CaféJazz.ca

February 8, 2003
Edition #278 Previously Next

Thanks for joining me on this edition as we showcase A Thousand Stories. That's the latest from Turning Point and we'll be hearing some selected tracks from the Arizona based band throughout the show. As well, I do hope that you will be able to stay with us for the Fresh Trax segment. On today's installment, as part of our customary five pack, we have Chieli Minucci, Spyro Gyra and Gato Barbieri while rounding it out are Larry Gittens and Darrell Diaz !

Showcase CD
A Thousand Stories - Turning Point :
The group now has six excellent releases to their credit and tours extensively, appearing in over 200 live performances each year. Their passion for music and the desire to share that passion has brought Turning Point to the cutting edge of jazz and world music. A Thousand Stories is the latest from the Arizona based band and a release that offers up a wide variety of rhythms and styles. It’s apparent from the first bars of the opening track that this cd is special. The musicianship is of the highest calibre, with melodies, arrangements & production to match. Indeed this is a rare find and most deserving of our musical spotlight on this occasion.

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Fresh Trax: Part One

Last tango - Gato Barbieri :
One of the elder statesmen in contemporary jazz, Gato recently celebrated his 70th birthday. The Shadow of the Cat is Barbieri’s Peak Records debut and 50th album overall. On the cd, Gato skilfully blends his soulful Latin sensibilities with a contemporary jazz vibe, all under the guidance of Grammy winning producer Jason Miles. One of the best tracks is the fresh treatment given to Last Tango, Gato’s classic theme to the movie, Last Tango in Paris and that’s the one that we’ve chosen for this edition of the show.

Gato Barbieri

Joe's Sample - Larry Gittens & Media :
Gittens is an award winning musician, composer and producer. Self-taught on trumpet, Larry went on to study at Berklee before landing a gig with Stevie Wonder. He appeared on 6 of Wonder’s most successful recordings and most recently has performed with Kool & the Gang. In the midst of a heavy schedule of session dates, he also found time to record Dual Identity, his debut effort as a solo artist. And a very nice cd it is, one that is an early favourite to make the Café Jazz Best Releases of 2003. This one is packed with great melodies and the type of the energy that is often associated only with live performances. The track we've selected features Najee on flute and Abe Fogel on drums.

*A Café Jazz pick-of-the-week; recommended listening. *

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Fresh Trax: Part Two

Las Guardias - Darrell Diaz :
After a period at the Berklee College of Music, Diaz landed his first gig with none other than jazz giant Herbie Hancock. The association resulted in Darrell’s appearance on 7 of Hancock’s projects. Other experiences included work with Doc Powell and soul-sensation Maxwell, among others. As with all artists that feel the creative urge, Diaz’s desire to express himself needed a more personal outlet. This resulted in the release of Devotion, his debut .


Foolin' Around Again - Chieli Minucci :
The new one is titled Night Grooves and is Minucci’s follow up to Butterfly, his highly successful project as leader of Special EFX. This cd is now Chieli’s fifth release under his own name and on it the gifted guitarist continues to demonstrate his versatility as a musician. In a phrase, this is typically great Minucci. So, if you're a fan, you'll want to get it, and if you aren't yet a fan, get it any way, and you'll soon be one.

Cape Town Love - Spyro Gyra:
The fruits of this latest project are to a large extent a reaction of group leader Jay Beckenstein to the fragmenting of the jazz world into the smooth and traditional camps. Being uncomfortable with a label that would confine their playing to just one or the other of the two worlds, Beckenstein and the other band members purposely chose to create songs that would dispel any preconceptions about the music or the group. As their career quickly closes in on the 30 year mark, the unit has always been known for their brilliant blending of soul, jazz, pop, and world beat. Now add to that a sense of mission and discovery, and the result is Original Cinema, a cd that could easily rank among their best. From that effort we'll be hearing Cape Town Love, a track that features guests Andy Narell on steel drums and Dave Samuels on vibes.

* Another pick-of-the-week and a shoo-in for the Café Jazz Best of 2003 year end review.*

Spyro Gyra

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