sax; Bill Charlap, piano; Peter Washington, bass; Kenny Washington,
drums) – Concord Records CCD 2274-2, 68:26 ****1/2:
Pairing Scott Hamilton, journeyman tenor sax stylist, with the Bill
Charlap Trio, is an act of marketing genius. Charlap has been more than
prodigious over the last ten years, recording for several labels as a
leader and being a first choice accompanist. Both jazz fans and critics
consider him a piano virtuoso, wise beyond his years and a future jazz
master in the vein of Hank Jones, Tommy Flanagan, and Barry Harris.
Charlap’s long time partners, Peter Washington, on bass; and Kenny
Washington, on drums are so simpatico with Bill, that it is almost a
disappointment when you find Charlap recording with any other bassist
Hamilton, himself, was a young prodigy years ago, recording ballads in
a Ben Webster/Zoot Sims style while still in his 20’s. Scott stood out
from the modernist tenor crowd back then much as Harry Allen is doing
today. No wonder that Concord teamed Hamilton and Allen in a Concord
release awhile back.
Hamilton’s Concord discography is quite extensive, but this CD stands
out in the upper echelon of his recordings due to the class of both his
rhythm section here as well as the wonderful arrangements found on this
release. The seemingly effortless interaction between Hamilton and the
Charlap trio make picking out highlight songs a real effort. A review
of the track list below can help you pick out your favorite standards.
Mine include: Blue N’ Boogie, a romantic I’ve Grown Accustomed to Your
Face, Lullaby of the Leaves, and a sumptuous This is Always.
Track list: What is This Thing Called Love, Wonder Why, Blue N’ Boogie,
I’ve Grown Accustomed to Her Face, Lullaby of the Leaves, Find and
Dandy, Bouncing with Bud, Love Letters, This is Always, I’ve Just Seen
– Jeff Krow