KIRK WHALUM - #LOVECOVERS
In the spirit of Grammy Award winner Kirk Whalum's most popular cover album, For You (1998), he returns with a gospel inspired jazz album called #LOVECOVERS, featuring covers of gospel music's most inspirational hits, along with some newly reimagined popular songs. Inside are time-honored gospel selections from The Clark Sisters' You Brought The Sunshine to Donnie McClurkin s "Speak To My Heart," seamlessly paired with the likes of Stevie Wonder s Have A Talk With God," Beyoncé s Love on Top, and Marvin Gaye s God Is Love. #LOVECOVERS also includes Whalum s first ever studio recording of Dolly Parton's I Will Always Love You since his appearance on Whitney Houston s 1992 recording from the film, The Bodyguard.
CHRIS THILE & BRAD MEHLDAU - CHRIS THILE & BRAD MEHLDAU
Nonesuch Records labelmates mandolinist and singer Chris Thile and pianist Brad Mehldau, longtime admirers of each other’s work, first toured as a duo in 2013. At the end of 2015, they played a two-night stand at New York City’s Bowery Ballroom before going into the studio to record Chris Thile & Brad Mehldau, a mix of covers and original songs that Nonesuch released on January 27, 2017, on two CDs / LPs. A US tour will be announced at a later date. The two musicians first performed together in September 2011 as part of Mehldau’s residency at London’s Wigmore Hall. The Guardian said of that performance, “Mehldau struck up his signature rocking chord vamp over which lightly struck motifs swell to sensuous extended melodies. Thile kept cajoling him with percussive snaps, flying runs, and chords strummed fast enough to sound as seamless as a purring strings section, inducing Mehldau … to bat back the playful provocation with stinging rejoinders.”
EERO KOIVISTOINEN & UMO JAZZ ORCHESTRA - ARTIC BLUES
Beautiful work from Finnish saxophone genius Eero Koivistoinen – a player who blew our minds with his experimental records at the start of the 70s, and continued to amaze us as the years go on! This set has Eero at the head of the larger UMO jazz orchestra – directing the group, but also taking off on plenty of solos as well – really richly-blown tenor lines that carve out a majestic space next to the deep colors of the group – a perfect blend, and one that's much better than some of the usual European albums of this nature. There's a few other great reed players in the lineup, and quartets of trumpet and trombones, too – and some other musicians get a chance to solo as well. The whole thing's got a sense of icy soul that almost feels like a tenor-based version of the Gil Evans experiments with Miles Davis – and most of the set was recorded in 2016, but the package also features a few bonus tracks from 2005. Titles include "Arctic Blues", "Meat Meat Blues", "Oshumare", "Nodiskt Samarbete", "2000 Fi", "Halling", "Northern Dimension", "Pictures In 3 Colors", and "Hallanvaara". ~ Dusty Groove