FreeWheelin' Music Safari


DEC 24, 2016 – From Earlier in the Week- Jimmy Smith and More..

DEC 24, 2016 – What You Missed Earlier in the Week (Thanks to Me not Writing About It!)

So Wednesday my  granddaughter Zoe and I ran some errands. The trip included: Walmart, the library and Lowe’s. For the trip to the library was an album that ‘i picked up at the Princeton Record Exchange a while back. It is a compilation album of tracks from albums that Jimmy Smith recorded on the Milestone label, during his brief tenure with the label. The album is titled Milestone Profiles: Jimmy Smith.

Milestone Profiles: Jimmy Smith.

Jimmy Smith has always been a jazz favorite of mine. My first exposure to jimmy Smith’s dynamic organ playing was the album The Dynamic Duo, he recorded with Wes Montgomery. Eventually Jimmy Smith’s Greatest  Hits album  became a favorite in my music rotation. That album introduced me to Jimmy’s  hits like “The Champ” and “The Sermon” Through the years many Smith albums have been added to my music library!!

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Melvin Rhyne – Jazz Organ – Born October 12, 1936

Melvin Rhyne an Original Member of the Wes Montgomery Trio and More!

One of my favorite things to do is to scroll down the daily list of birthdays at All About Jazz. I always check for names I am unfamiliar with and/or musicians who play instruments that I enjoy! Today as I looked over the list I noticed a Hammond B-3 Organ player Melvin Rhyne.  I didn’t recognize Melvin’s name. However, after reading the following synopsis of the early years Rhyne’s career, I do believe I probably have heard his Hammond B-3 before……


Melvin Ryne was born on October 12, 1936 in Indianapolis, Indiana. Her starte playing piano at an early age. He became a part of the city’s jazz scene at the age of 19 whenwhen…..

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Marquis Hill – The Way We Play

The Way We Play – Marquis Hill puts his own spin on some jazz classics

I first discovered the music of Marquis Hill back on 2013, around the time of the release of his album The Poet. At the time, I couldn’t find The Poet at any of my usual listening spots, so I listened to his album Sounds of the City . IK quickly became a fan! The sounds of the city emanated from Marquis’ home town of Chicago and the album was outstanding.

After the release of  The Poet, Marquis won  the 2014 THELONIOUS MONK INTERNATIONAL JAZZ COMPETITION. The winner of that competition also wins a recording contract with Concord Records. The Way We Play is the first album of the contract.The result may be a long and award-winning collaboration between the two! Jazz Times says this about Marquis’s playing

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Terceto Kali hits the Flamenco-Jazz Scene

Terceto Kali – Terceto Kali

One of the albums that has been in my music rotation this past week while on vacation on Long Beach
Island in NJ was the latest the self-titled debut album from a three-man trio Terceto Kali. The trio led by virtuoso flamenco guitarist Jason McGuire “El Rubio, plays a blend of flamenco, Latin and jazz rooted in a variety of musical genres. Prior to the release of this debut album the band was billed as The Jason McGuire Trio. Either way, if you are a fan of flamenco guitar, oh hell, if you are a fan of guitar playing, you are going to love this album! Throughout the album, “El Rubio” lives up to his billing as a virtuoso guitarist!

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A Playlist for a Thursday Morning Commute

Some Jazz, Blues and Prog Make for a Fine Commute Playlist

This morning I put the iPod on playlists recently played and for my commute to and from work at Target the soundtrack was a mix of new music added to my music library. Some the tracks are from the albums that I bought at the Princeton Record Exchange a couple of weeks ago and some are just new albums. So here’s the twelve track playlist…

  1. “Little Niles” – In the Vanguard – Bobby Hutcherson
  2. “No Good Place for the Lonely” – Blues of Desperation – Joe Bonamassa
  3. “Scorpio” – Shock Value – Live at Smoke- Jeremy Pelt .
  4. “Cause” – Shock Value – Live at Smoke- Jeremy Pelt .
  5. “This Train” –  Blues of Desperation – Joe Bonamassa”
  6. “Just In Time” (Take 11)  – Expoobedient – Lee Morgan
  7. “Quik” – Have You Heard – Javon Jackson
  8. “Somewhere in Dreams” – Project X  Dark Moor
  9. “Suspicion” – Shock Value – Live at Smoke- Jeremy Pelt .
  10. “Hightime” – Dark Blue – Jim Rotondi
  11. “The Valley Runs Low” –  Blues of Desperation – Joe Bonamassa”
  12. “Nevermore”  Project X – Dark Moor

The following is a breakdown of the albums on the playlist and the number of tracks from each album. Let’s see the list is composed of tracks from five jazz albums, one blues album and a prog rock album…….

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Jason Marsalis – Vibes the Marsalis Way!!

Jason Marsalis :Vibraphone Born: March 4, 1977

So a while back I came across the album In a World of Mallets by Jason Marsalis. I listened to the album because the lead instrument was a vibraphone and not because of the name Marsalis. In fact I didn’t even make the connection until today, when I was reading about Jason, who is celebrating birthday thirty-ninth (39) Soon, ,when I read that Jason was in fact the youngest of the famous Marsalis family led by father Ellis and includes brothers Wynton, Bradford and Delfeayo! I felt a little better when I read at All About Jazz that…..

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Cal Tjader – Latin Vibes from California!

Cal Tjader – Vibraphone – (July 16, 1925 – May 5, 1982)

Cal Tjader was born on July 16th in 1925 in Saint Louis, Missouri and that fact surprises me! See I thought that Tjader was Latin! I discovered Tjader’s music, because he plays vibraphone and Gary Burton’s album For Hamp. Bags, Red and Cal, led me to it! As “I listened to his Latin influenced music I just assumed that he was Latin. But in fact he is the son of touring Swedish American vaudevillians! His father tap danced and his mother played piano, a husband-wife team going from city to city with their troupe to earn a living.His father taught him to tap dance. He performed around the Bay Area as “Tjader Junior,” a tap-dancing wunderkind. He performed a brief non-speaking role dancing alongside Bill “Bojangles” Robinson in the film The White of the Dark Cloud of Joy!

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Aaron Diehl – Space Time Continuum

Aaron Diehl Joins Generations on Space Time Continuum

Aaron DiehlWhen I first started to listen to jazz it was mostly the guitar of Wes Montgomery and the Hammond B3 of Jimmy Smith, but through the years I started adding other artists. Pianist like Thelonious Monk and Oscar Peterson were added to my music library, along with Miles, Gary Burton and Milt Jackson. One night a few years ago I put on The Bespoke Man’s Narrative from Aaron Diehl, while I was reading. After a few minutes I stopped reading and listened to some unbelievable piano! Along with Diehl’s piano on that album I also loved the vibraphone of Warren Wolf on the album. Anyway, a few weeks ago Diehl’s new album Space,Time, Continuum joined my music rotation and it’s another outstanding outing from a great pianist. What surprised me was the presence of some fine saxophone and trumpet, which I hadn’t heard on Diehl’s previous albums.

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Hank Mobley….exploring his music

Hank Mobley – Tenor Saxophone – Composer 

 (July 7, 1930 – May 30, 1986)

I first discovered the saxophone of Hank Mobley one night in 2014 when I was exploring some jazz. That night I explored the music of Blue Mitchell, Wynton Kelly and Hank Mobley. One that night Hank Mobley’s album Soul Station was my favorite of the night!! You can read about it in- A Jazzy Night with Music from Blue, Wynton and Hank and friends!! Here’s some background information about Hank Mobley from Wikipedia:

Henry “Hank” Mobley (July 7, 1930 – May 30, 1986) was an American hard bop and soul jazz tenor saxophonist and composer. Mobley was described by Leonard Feather as the “middleweight champion of the tenor saxophone”, a metaphor used to describe his tone, that was neither as aggressive as John Coltrane nor as mellow as Stan Getz, and his style that was laid-back, subtle and melodic, especially in contrast with players like Sonny Rollins and Coltrane. The critic Stacia Proefrock claimed he is “one of the most underrated musicians of the bop era.”

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Terence Blanchard – Breathless

Terence Blanchard

Terence Blanchard’s – Breathless – leaves me just that way!

One of the  albums that has spent considerable time in my music rotation over the last few weeks is Breathless the latest release from Terence Blanchard and the E-Collective. Terence Blanchard’s music career started in the 1980s first touring with Lionel Hampton and then replacing Wynton Marsalis in Art Blakey‘s Jazz Messengers. Since then he has been a prominent force in the jazz community.with 5 career Grammys out of his 13 career Grammy nominations, Terence has released twenty albums since his debut in 1984. Blanchard has probably reached his widest audience through his work as a film composer. His trumpet can be heard on nearly fifty film scores; with more than forty of the films scores were composed by Blanchard. As if all that was not enough to do, since 2000, Blanchard has served as Artistic Director at the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz.and in August of 2011, he was named the Artistic Director of the Henry Mancini Institute at the University of Miami Frost School of Music! Some people can do it all!.

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