GARY WILLIAMS – AT THE MOVIES
At The Movies celebrates five decades of Hollywood classics, including hits from Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, Love Actually, Toy Story, Saturday Night Fever and Jungle Book. Dipping into jazz, bossa nova, pop and swing there are four lesser known gems from Elvis Presley movies and original takes on standards from Joni Mitchell, Fred Astaire and The Bee Gees. Hot on the heals of last year’s Christmas album Big Band Wonderland, AT THE MOVIES features some of the UK’s finest musicians: Matt Regan (piano), Joe Pettitt (bass) and Elliot Henshaw (drums) with original arrangements from Phil Steel, Paul Campbell and New York’s Caleb Collins. Marking a departure for Gary, who made his name singing the songs of Frank Sinatra, you'll hear hints of Michael Franks, Nora Jones and Michael Bublé on this contemporary classic. Gary made his name as a soloist with big bands and concert orchestras, including the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, the Melbourne Symphony, the BBC Concert Orchestra, Ireland’s RTE and the Lahti Sinfonia Finland. He’s performed for The Prince of Wales at Buckingham Palace, the LA Jazz Institute and Ronnie Scott’s. As a broadcaster he’s presented for BBC Radio 2, Jazz FM and The Wireless. Playbill called his book ‘Cabaret Secrets’ “an invaluable guide”. He’s recorded 15 albums, including 3 at Abbey Road and a Jazz FM album of the week.
STANLEY COWELL – NO ILLUSIONS
A nicely fresh setting for pianist Stanley Cowell – a record that moves past his more frequent trio format, to feature the longstanding genius in a quartet with Bruce Williams on alto and flute! Williams has a laidback, lyrical tone that seems to bring out a different side in Cowell's music – especially as the album mostly features the pianist's own compositions – a way of building up his sound slowly, with a more quiet-burning version of the spiritual energy of Stanley's youth – yet still with end results that are equally redemptive, and very beautiful overall. The rest of the group features Jay Anderson on bass and Billy Drummond on drums – and Cowell also plays a bit of thumb piano and kyma too. Titles include "Celestial Women", "No Illusions", "Miss TE & O", "Sunlight Shifting", "B Minor Folksong", and "Nostalgia For Homelands". ~ Dusty Groove
ESTRADA ORCHESTRA - JAZZBEATJAATIS
A fantastic full album from this ultra-cool group – a funky combo from contemporary Estonia – with ties to the Misha Panfilov Sound Combo that you might know from a sweet selection of recent 45s! Misha's in this group on bass, and also produced the record – with a raw sound that makes the whole thing a fantastic criss-crossing of deep funk and some freer jazz energy – all at a level that makes the whole thing completely fresh, and one of the hippest underground records we've heard in a while! These guys aren't really spiritual jazz, but they clearly get that energy – and although they play hard, they're not straight funk either – as they spin out on longer tracks and really know how to take solos – serving up excellent sounds on flute, tenor, alto, and a range of great keyboards – all set to nicely heavy drums, on titles that include "Nite City", "Envelope", "Garden Of Pleasures", "Queens", and "Troubled Mind". (Limited edition of 500!) ~ Dusty Groove