CD Mini-Reviews: Tim Ray, NOJO, Mike Pachelli, Jeff Rupert/George Garzone

(Slightly tweaked mini-reviews of new and recent CDs, originally posted on Twitter — Please follow me at @pboothmedia)

Tim Ray, “Excursions and Adventures” (Whaling City Sound, 2020) – Pianist Ray leads a better-known rhythm section – bassist John Patitucci and drummer Terri Lyne Carrington – on refreshing originals and spiky versions of Billy Preston’s “Nothing From Nothing,” the Stones’ “Paint it Black” and Monk’s “Trinkle Tinkle.”


New Orleans Jazz Orchestra (NOJO), “Songs — The Music of Allen Toussaint” (Storyville Records, 2019) — Stylish, tangy takes on Toussaint gems from New Orleans’ finest big band. Standout: “It’s Raining, with singer Dee Dee Bridgewater on pianist Victor Atkins’ arrangement.

Mike Pachelli, “High Standards” (2019) — Known as a blues-rocker, the adept France-based guitarist (my old friend & occasional gig mate) is joined by Tony Levin (ex-King Crimson) on upright & ex-Pat Metheny drummer Danny Gottlieb for a comfort-jazz set:”There Will Never Be Another You,” “Sweet Georgia Brown,” more.

Jeff Rupert/George Garzone, “The Ripple” (Rupe Media, 2019) — 2 tenor sax men play unison, harmonize & trade bars famously on warmly recorded standards. Rupert, pianist Richard Drexler and drummer Marty Morell are affiliated with the jazz program at UCF in Orlando. Jeremy Allen is on bass. Picks: “The Shadow of Your Smile,” “Alone Together”


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