Bob Bernotas, WNTI's host of Just Jazz, makes the following four CD recommendations:
Roni Ben-Hur: Fortuna (Motema): Along with his authoritative straight-ahead playing, the gifted guitarist Roni Ben-Hur displays his affinity for the music of Antonio Carlos Jobim and rarely played show tunes. Ben-Hur is joined on this 2007 session by a stellar group: pianist Ronnie Mathews, bassist Rufus Reid, drummer Lewis Nash, and percussionist Steve Kroon.
Bill Mays: Mays at the Movies (Steeplechase): On his latest trio CD Bill Mays, one of the most highly respected keyboard artists on today's jazz scene, explores classic movie themes by Mancini, Mandel, Legrand, and more, plus one original composition. Mays' insightful and refreshing treatments uncover previously hidden aspects of this familiar material.
Philly Joe Jones Dameronia:
Look, Stop and Listen Featuring Johnny Griffin (Uptown)
Rickey Woodard: Pineapple Delight (Wood and Wood): Tenor saxophonist Rickey Woodard, a veteran of the Ray Charles and Clayton-Hamilton big bands, and his quintet have produced a superb album of state-of-the-art hard bop - timeless, upbeat, and ever-swinging. Woodard's compositions are sunny and tuneful, and his playing exudes strength and confidence.
Philly Joe Jones Dameronia: Look, Stop and Listen Featuring Johnny Griffin (Uptown): In 1982 drummer Philly Joe Jones formed Dameronia, a band dedicated to preserving the legacy of the visionary composer-arranger, Tadd Dameron. Dameronia's second album, now remastered (by Rudy van Gelder) and reissued on CD, is required listening for anyone interested in Tadd Dameron's singularly beautiful music - and that should be everyone.
Purchasing any of these CDs using these links also supports WNTI: