Friday, July 20, 2012

Eric Reed - The Swing and I

Eric Reed may be one of the most rapidly maturing of the young generation of jazz pianists, as his most recent recording attests. The self-assurance, conviction and stylistic breadth he brings to this release far surpass his earlier work, which was promising. In this trio recording, Reed draws on a remarkably wide range of musical influences and comes up with a more personal language than he ever hinted at before. Though there's no mistaking the sources of his inspiration-hard-charging church piano, early 20th Century classical keyboard, vintage blues styles-Reed effectively shapes these elements for his own musical purposes. Whether offering programmatic portraits in "The Gemini Suite," an atmospheric setting in "A Spoonful of Sugar" or exquisitely expressive playing in "Ahmad's Blues," he firmly establishes himself as a major, emerging voice in jazz piano. - by Howard Reich, Chicago Tribune

Pianist Eric Reed is one of a growing number of talented musicians who have emerged from Wynton Marsalis' bands to pursue rewarding solo careers in their own right. Born in Philadelphia in 1970, Reed's first exposure to music came through his father, a minister and local gospel singer; he began playing piano at age two and soon discovered jazz, quickly developing into a musical prodigy. He entered music school at age seven, and resisted classical training in favor of jazz, inspired early on by Dave Brubeck, Ramsey Lewis, Art Blakey, and Horace Silver. Four years later, he moved with his family to Los Angeles, where he digested enough jazz history that he was able to begin playing around the city's jazz scene as a teenager, both as a leader and a sideman for the likes of Gerald Wilson, Teddy Edwards, John Clayton, and Clora Bryant. He first met Wynton Marsalis at age 17, and toured briefly with the trumpeter the following year (his first and only at Cal State-Northridge). In 1989, Reed officially joined Marsalis' band as the replacement for Marcus Roberts; the following year, he issued his debut album as a leader, A Soldier's Hymn, on Candid, with backing by his regular trio of bassist Dwayne Burno and drummer Gregory Hutchinson. Over 1991-1992, Reed worked with Freddie Hubbard and Joe Henderson as a sidelight, returning to Marsalis' group by the end of 1992. He cut a pair of well-received albums for MoJazz, It's All Right to Swing and The Swing and I, during 1993-1994, and in 1995 embarked on his first tour as leader of his own group. - from Amazon website

Artist: Eric Reed
Album: The Swing and I
Year: 1994
Label: MoJazz (1995)
Runtime: 68:11

1.  The Swing And I (Eric Reed) 4:38
2.  The Gemini Suite: The First Man - "Scotty" (Eric Reed) 7:03
3.  The Gemini Suite: The Second Man - "Frank Marshall" (Eric Reed) 2:24
4.  The Gemini Suite: The Fourth Man - "Holden Caulfield" (Eric Reed) 3:18
5.  Felix The Cat (Eric Reed) 3:50
6.  Ahmad's Blues (Ahmad Jamal) 8:52
7.  Ka-Boose (Eric Reed) 4:40
8.  Frenzia (Eric Reed) 0:49
9.  A Spoonful Of Sugar (Eric Reed) 7:21
10.  Listen Here (Eddie Harris) 3:56
11.  Uncle Lucius' Interlude (Eric Reed) 0:27
12.  Old Flame (Eric Reed) 5:33
13.  Healing Hand (Eric Reed) 3:42
14.  Evergreen (Eric Reed) 2:34
15.  Big Dogs (Eric Reed) 3:21
16.  Let Us Go Into The House Of The Lord (Traditional/arr. Eric Reed) 3:12
17.  Acknowledgement (John Coltrane) 0:58
18.  Praise #1 (Eric Reed) 1:25

Eric Reed (Piano)
Ben Wolfe (Double Bass) - 1-4,6-9,14,15,18
Rodney Whitaker (Double Bass) - 5,10-13,15-17
Greg Hutchinson (Drums)
Eddie Bailey (Vocals)
Denise Morgan (Backing Vocals)
Suzzane Williams (Backing Vocals)
Beverly Taylor (Backing Vocals)



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