Jeb Patton – Tenthish, Live In New York – CellarLive CL040818 55:50***1/2
( Jeb Patton – piano; David Wong – bass; Rodney Green – drums)
There is no shortage these days of stylish, commanding, inventive jazz piano players. Regrettably not all of them are blessed with the attention they rightly deserve. Nevertheless, these individuals persevere in the belief that their talent will out. With his most recent release Tenthish on CellarLive Records, Jeb Patton demonstrates the melodic prowess of consistent new confidence which will add to his growing resumé.
Recorded live at Mezzrow in New York City on March 20, 2018 Patton and his sympathetic cohorts have delivered an engaging session that was built to showcase the piano trio tradition, and the talents of the group both collectively and individually. The recital starts with a Thad Jones composition called “Zec” which harkens back to the style of the Tommy Flanagan Trio. Strong single note lines are filled with a swelling spiritedness and intricate interplay among the band. Drummer Rodney Green has several robust interjections.
Jeb Patton’s own compositions are limited to the title track “Tenthish” and “Third Movement”. The former is a more complex work with a brawny tempo and slashing drum work from Rodney Green. The latter swings but with a laid back groove but filled with Patton’s erudition and strong toned bass solo from David Wong.
There are three numbers from the Duke Ellington-Billy Strayhorn songbook including “Reflections In D”, “Sophisticated Lady” and “Johnny Come Lately”. Each number gives Patton an opportunity to demonstrate his understanding and facility of ever changing harmonic forms and structures. Bassist Wong plays a prominent role in the middle number that he fulfills wth deftness and command. In the final tune, Patton is ever mindful of playing with clean expression yet maintaining a pulsating groove.
The penultimate and longest track is a double play of “Royal Garden Blues and Kelly Blue”. The former is done in solo piano form and takes the style of the period in which it was written namely, 1919 by Clarence Williams and Spencer Williams ( no relation). As a number, it gained most of its recognition from the 1927 recording by Bix Beiderbecke. “Kelly Blue” is both the title track and name of the 1959 release by pianist Wynton Kelly.
Patton keeps the blues feel of the original number, but imbues it with his own sensibility and rolling energy.
TrackList: Zec; Tenthish; Third Movement; This can’t be Love; Reflections In D; Sophisticated Lady; Johnny Come Lately; I’ll Never Stop Loving You; Royal Garden Blues/Kelly Blue; Overtime