Tim Ray - Fire & Rain - Whaling City Sound

Tim Ray’s new release Fire & Rain features his jazz piano trio with John Lockwood on bass and Mark Walker on drums. The ensemble showcases their harmonically rich and balanced sound, playing uncommon yet effective choices such as Oliver Nelson’s “Stolen Moments” and Antonio Carlos Jobim’s “Mojave,” as well as newer material including three original pieces and the collective “Improv #1 (for Chick).” This collection pays tribute to Ray’s heroes, including Monk’s “Bye-Ya” and Jarrett’s “The Windup,” while also featuring works by overlooked composers such as Carla Bley and Dave McKenna. The album includes a track from the singer-songwriter genre, James Taylor’s iconic “Fire and Rain,” which builds to an inexorable group climax. Also in the collection, is a family portrait piece, “The Meeting,” alternatively titled “The Jbug and the Kman” and a groovy track called “NO Worries,” which has a hint of electric keyboard and New Orleans-style rhythm.

Nanny Assis - Rovanio, The Music of Nanny Assis - In+Out Records

Singer-Percussionist-Guitarist Nanny Assis presents a panorama of Brazilian & Jazz musical styles on Rovanio: The Music of Nanny Assis, on In+Out Records. Nanny Assis’s 40-year career as a bossa/jazz vocalist, percussionist, and guitarist was well established, but for the Bahia, Brazil native (now based in New York and south Florida) that was only part of the story. On his new album, Rovanio: The Music of Nanny Assis, he showcases a remarkable kaleidoscope of styles, textures, ideas, and even languages in collaboration with 20 acclaimed jazz artists, including bass legend Ron Carter, Randy Brecker, Chico Pinheiro, Lakecia Benjamin, and vocalist Janis Siegel.

Ute Lemper - Time Traveler – Jazzhaus Records

Iconic chanteuse and dancer Ute Lemper steps away from her historical repertoire and embraces her inner songwriter, producing an album that spans genres and time periods. The album includes ten original songs that merge various genres, including jazz, soul, R&B, and chanson. Together with her partner Todd Turkisher, Ute Lemper takes risks in terms of production and sound, luring the listener onto a completely unexpected path in some pieces. “Life is a song, and it wants to be sung,” said Ute Lemper, the New York-based singer and performer who has gained worldwide recognition as an interpreter of the Weimer repertoire of the 1920s, including the works of Brecht and Weill, and Marlene Dietrich. Despite her success in this genre, Ute’s artistic palette has expanded over time, and she now presents her own creativity with her latest album, Time Traveler.

Judith Owen - Unapologetically - Twanky Records

Unapologetically, the 5 song EP from Judith Owen highlights 5 of the best tracks from her recently released album Come On & Get It. On the new album, vocal provocateur Judith Owen celebrates the music of the “unsung badass” ladies of jazz and blues. Delicious, delightful, bodacious, brave, insightful, seductive and fun – just some of the many adjectives one might use to describe Judith Owen’s fascinating and alluring new album, “Come On & Get It,” set to be released via London’s Twanky Records. Featuring a cornucopia of New Orleans finest musicians.

Dave Bass - The Trio vol 3 - Dave Bass Music

THE TRIO – VOL.3, the newest recording by pianist and composer DAVE BASS, is a lyrical, freewheeling buffet of solid originals to-gether with an eclectic assortment of compositions ranging from the American Songbook to the jazz songbook to a Piazzolla tango.  This is Bass’ sixth CD as a leader and follows The Trio – Vol. 2The Trio – Vol. 1No BoundariesNYC Sessions, and GoneGlide Magazine calls Vol. 2, “an unending exposition on imagination, with consummate grace and alacrity.” Bass adopted the trio format in 2021. “In jazz, the piano trio is one of the most demanding and revealing disciplines – perhaps the ultimate challenge for a jazz pianist,” says Bass. “There is nowhere to hide, and all is revealed. When successful, the trio format allows for a wonderful telepathy between the players, and I am delighted that this has happened with bassist Kerry Kashiwagi and drummer Scott Gordon.” Kashiwagi and Gordon also appeared on Vol.1 and Vol. 2. They have played many trio gigs with Dave, resulting in the profound musical intimacy of VOL. 3Guitarist Barry Finnerty, who recorded with the likes of Miles Davis, Brecker Brothers, Hubert Laws, and Ray Barretto, appears as a guest artist on three of the 12 tracks on VOL. 3. The trio once again displays the deep empathy of a band that sounds like they have been playing together for decades. Bass’ interpretations breathe new life into the standards while avoiding novelty-for-novelty’s sake. Bass and company are superb musicians, and the music on THE TRIO – VOL. 3 is by turns whimsical, swinging, soulful, eloquent, and always adventurous.

Oscar Peñas - Chicken or Pasta - Musikoz

Coming on the heels of 2022’s Almadraba, his deeply evocative suite drawing on Andalusian culture and brimming with Iberian, classical, and flamenco flavors, Oscar Peñas’ latest finds him returning to his jazz roots. Once again accompanied by 6-string electric bassist Moto Fukushima and drummer Richie Barshay, his regular rhythm tandem for the past 14 years, and violinist Sara Caswell, a member of his working quartet since 2013, the Catalan-American guitarist-composer is also joined by two special guests — guitarist Mike Stern and pedal steel guitar ace Greg Leisz — who help elevate the proceedings on  Chicken or Pasta, Peñas’ sixth recording as a leader. “My last project was more involved in terms of composition,” he said of Almadraba. “I arranged everything for a string quartet. Now it’s back to the lead sheet format and minimal arrangements where the idea is, ‘Let’s just play and have some fun.’” You get that sense of fun right out of the gate with the swinging title track. Peñas introduces his warm-toned guitar signature in tight unisons on the buoyant head with violinist Caswell, who swings in a giddy, syncopated Stuff Smith mode on her solo. Oscar’s fluid legato solo over the relaxed midtempo 4/4 pulse laid down by Fukushima and Barshay is melodic and tasty in a Jim Hall vein.

Kevin Toney - An Evening w/ Kevin Toney & Friends: Jazz Legacy - K-Tone Enterprises

On his new album, An Evening With Kevin Toney and Friends – Jazz Legacy, award-winning piano master Kevin Toney celebrates 50 acclaimed years in music with an expansive solo plus concert that captures his spirited legacy of Acoustic Jazz! He honors the genre’s early pioneers by playing jazz classics by Duke Ellington, Billy Strayhorn, Fats Waller, and Dave Brubeck. Two of his songs and two by his daughter, Dominique, showcase his extensive versatility. Kevin, a two-time Grammy nominee, exclaims, “I’m entirely uninhibited and freely pursue numerous musical avenues.” Grammy-winning producer Don Mizell, executive creative producer of the album, sums it up best, proudly proclaiming, “This Kevin Toney piano album is nothing short of a tour de force! He doesn’t really need anybody…but he’s got some stellar friends.” Recorded Live at the North Coast Repertory Theater in San Diego, the album indisputably places Toney within a setting and repertoire that solidifies his direct connection and lifelong dedication to America’s African-American-rooted indigenous musical art form. Accompanying Toney are his daughter, singer-songwriter Dominique Toney, high school friend Kamau Kenyatta playing soprano sax on one selection, and the incomparable Azar Lawrence playing tenor sax on another selection.

Rodrick Harper – 2702 - RHM Entertainment

Roderick Harper has been singing almost as long as he has been speaking. Since that time, he has worked with Clarinetist Alvin Batiste, Pianist Ellis Marsalis, The Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra and numerous others. His recordings are as follows: Beautiful Beginnings, produced by Delfeayo Marsalis and The Essence Of… produced by Grammy Award Winner, Nicholas Payton, and a self-produced CD, Perfect Imperfections, E-VOL-VING, featuring, Ellis Marsalis and Saxophonist Donald Harrison. His first recorded EP of original R&B music, Back To Love, became an top charting project overseas. It spawned a #1 single, Got To, #3 Make It Last Forever and #5 Back To Love. His voice was a part of the HBO Soul of the Game, the BET BlacKout, and UMC series, Terror Lake Drive, a featured vocalist on Kent Jordan’s CD, Out of this World, as well as, a Folgers Coffee and McDonalds Commercial. He is releasing his most personal jazz to date entitled, “2702”, produced by Grammy Award Nominee, Vocalist and Drummer, Jamison Ross.

Katriona Taylor - Daring Dreams - Diva Doll Records

Katriona Taylor has a warm and attractive voice, is a skilled and sensitive songwriter and infuses her originals with honest emotion. Katriona’s voice is mature, with power, delicacy and color. Katriona first practiced as a lawyer and left her UK legal career to concentrate on singing & songwriting. The albums Precious Time, Blind Passion & Daring Dreams are her latest three world-wide releases, all on Diva Doll Records label. Amongst her many concerts, she toured in Europe with the legendary George Benson and with The James Taylor Quartet, she performs at top jazz venues such as London’s Ronnie Scott’s Club and has worked with War of the Worlds composer Jeff Wayne amongst others. Katriona Taylor is the daughter of former UK tennis champion Roger Taylor and is legally blind.

Jazz Defenders – Scheming - ITI Music

ITI Records is privileged to bring to America, THE JAZZ DEFENDERS. Led by one of the UK’s most formidable jazz pianists, George Cooper, The Jazz Defenders are a group born from a deep love of Blue Note jazz, drawing on a wealth of inspiration to craft their own raw and vibrant compositions. The hard bop recordings of Horace Silver, Hank Mobley, Lee Morgan, and Art Blakey were highly regarded for a reason – catchy horn lines and incredible musicianship combined with Rudy Van Gelder’s engineering skills mean they will forever be regarded as classics of the genre. The Jazz Defenders are a group that defends the legacy of those recordings whilst creating its own original identity and distinction. The music they produce together is a modern soul jazz slant on this classic hard bop, effortlessly channeling the spirit of the golden Blue Note era of jazz. Personnel: George Cooper – Piano/Keyboards, Will Harris – Bass, Ian Matthews – Drums, Nick Malcolm – Trumpet, Jake McMurchie – Tenor Sax