Guitarist Adam Rogers continues his longtime association
with alto saxophonist David Binney. Rogers is known for his fret work
with Chris Potter and the late Michael Brecker. Rogers and Binney have chosen a collection of well-known standards as vehicals on their latest Criss
Cross release entitled, R & B. The co-lead a lean and
hard-swinging quartet with bassist Reuben Rogers (no relation) and drummer
In a departure from their usual focus on original material,
Rogers and Binney aim straight for bebop, ballads and classics by: Thelonious
Monk, Freddie Hubbard and Wayne Shorter, Miles Davis, among others. The result
is a fresh new sound for these well-known vehicals of improvisation.
Rogers tone is unique and warm, his fretwork and musical
color and range are intelligent and bring a new perspective to the guitaristic
lanugage when approaching standards. The re-working of the standard
repertoire could have been a contented blowing date on cruise control. However,
Rogers and Binney dig deep into each selection to find subtle twists of harmonic
motion and colorfull counterpoint, but no matter how far the boundaries are
pushed, fragmented or colored, there remains an umbilical connection to the
tradition of the jazz lanuguage.
Great music with some fresh ideas on standard tunes.
Absolutely worth getting, as is most of the music on the Criss Cross label.
Tracks: Ah-Leu-Cha (Charlie Parker) 6:49; Introspection (Thelonious Monk) 7:38; In Love In Vain (Jerome Kern) 6:38; Africaine (Wayne Shorter) 7:08; Don't Misunderstand (Gordon Parks) 7:24; Sippin' At Bell's (Miles Davis) 9:05; Skydive (Freddie Hubbard) 7:25; My Ship (Kurt Weill / Ira Gershwin) 7:18; I Feel A Song Coming On (Jimmy McHugh) 7:55.
Players: Adam Rogers (G); David Binney (As); Reuben Rogers (B); Gerald Cleaver (D)