Monday, May 15, 2017

CD Review: Celebrate 60 Years Of "The Art Pepper Quartet" & John Pizzarelli Pays Tribute To Frank Sinatra and Antonio Carlos Jobim

Sixty years ago, 1957 was a landmark year for jazz musician Art Pepper. Her released two monumental albums, "Art Pepper Meets The Rhythm Section" and "The Art Pepper Quartet." For it's 60th anniversary, Omnivore Recordings revisited the latter album for a new release on April 22nd. The original 7-song album has almost doubled in size thanks to five bonus tracks from the sessions for "The Art Pepper Quartet" album.

The album featured five Art Pepper originals and two cover songs. The band played tight and safe on the opener "Art's Opus" as Pepper wove his way around his rhythm section. The band seems most excited about performing the cover songs "I Surrender Dear" and "Besame Mucho" as they sound like they add an extra jolt of energy to their delivery of these two songs. The bonus tracks deliver alternate takes of Art Pepper's originals "Pepper Pot" and "Blues At Twilight," but the greatest addition to this new release are the first six takes of "Val's Pal." You feel as if you are in the studio with the band as they work up this great, energetic tune. To find out more about the newly released "The Art Pepper Quartet," please visit

American Jazz guitarist and singer John Pizzarelli is paying homage to two of his greatest influences with his new studio album. The new release titled "Sinatra & Jobim @ 50" showcases Pizzarelli's love for Frank Sinatra and Antonio Carlos Jobim, who joined forces fifty years ago to record an iconic album together. John's new 11-song release begins with the bossa nova groove of "Baubles, Bangles And Beads" as John invites Jobim's grandson to duet on the classics "Agua de Beber" and "Dindi." John does an amazing job combining the Cole Porter original "I Concentrate On You" with Jobim's song "Wave" as the vocals are so smooth and flowing. John includes his tribute to the Jobim and Stan Getz collaboration of "The Girl From Impanema" at the end of "Antonio's Song," before John wraps up his new album with the medley of "If You Never Come To Me/Change Partners," which leads to the bossa nova rhythm of "Canto Casual."

The new album will be released on July 28th through the Concord Music Group's Concord Jazz label. He is currently on the road, promoting his new album with shows running into October. For a complete list of his live dates and to find out more about his new album "Sinatra & Jobim @ 50," please visit

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