Mike LeDonne, B-3, & The Groover Quartet – That Feelin’ – Savant

by | Jan 16, 2017 | Jazz CD Reviews

Keeping the classic organ/sax quartet format vibrant…

Mike LeDonne & The Groover Quartet – That Feelin’ – Savant SCD 2159, 59:38 ****:

(Mike LeDonne – Hammond organ; Eric Alexander – tenor sax; Peter Bernstein – guitar; Joe Farnsworth – drums. With special guest, Vincent Herring –  alto sax on # 1, 5, & 6)

Living in New York City with its unique seven-day-a-week jazz scene, provides the opportunity for Hammond B-3 organist, Mike LeDonne, to keep his Groover Quartet tight. Fellow band members Eric Alexander (tenor sax), Peter Bernstein (guitar), and Joe Farnsworth (drums) are all active with various projects and recording dates. Yet they can play with LeDonne often, usually at the jazz club Smoke. Mike has kept the soul jazz sax/organ/guitar front line format alive and kicking on his new CD, That Feelin’. It is a grouping that can re-conceptualize pop and soul charts like “La La Means I Love You” and “This Will Be an Everlasting Love” as well as the Broadway tune, “A Lot of Living to Do.” Straight-ahead jazz is covered by Donald Byrd’s “Fly Little Bird, Fly” and the standard, “At Last.”

The quartet expands to a dual sax quintet with altoist, Vincent Herring, joining in on “I’d Never Change a Thing About You,” written for Mike’s daughter, Mary; a tribute to Lou Donaldson, “Sweet Papa Lou”; and the groovalicious “Gravy Blues,” penned by bassist Ray Brown. The tenor/alto blend just ups the groove quotient.

For fans of the Hammond with saxophone with rock solid guitar and drum accompaniment, this is the ultimate soul comfort food music for the heart. Certainly it will bring on “that feelin.”

TrackList: I’d Never Change a Thing About You, That Feelin’, La La Means I Love You, Fly Little Bird Fly, Gravy Blues, Sweet Papa Lou, At Last, This Will Be an Everlasting Love, A Lot of Livin’ to Do

—Jeff Krow

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