Showing posts from June 1, 2009
Artist: Matt Criscuolo
CD Title: Melancholia
Label: Self-Releases

Personnel: Matt Criscuolo: alto saxophone; Larry Willis: piano, string arrangements; Billy Drummond: drums; Phil Bowler: bass; Dave Teggar: cello; Rachel Golub: violin; Whitney LaGrange: violin; Julie Goodale: viola.

Reviewed By: Jeff Becker
Melancholia, Matt Criscuolo’s third CD embraces the jazz genre sprinkled with contemporary seasonings. Criscuolo self-titles it as top shelf progressive, but I would have to disagree. The CD is way too subdued and introspective for the progressive entitlement.

His credits include work with David Murray, and Etta James, and he counts among his influences Murray, Charlie Parker and Ornette Coleman. For Melancholia, named for a Billy Eckstine composition covered here, Criscuolo is accompanied by pianist Larry Willis, bassist Phil Bowler and drummer Billy Drummond. A small string ensemble joins the quartet on a few selections.
"Pensivity" is one of two Criscuo…

A Teardrop of Sun Creates a Bright Light

Artist: L'Tanya Mari
CD Title: A Teardrop of Sun
Label: Falconeye Records
Personnel: L'Tanya Mari (vocals), Harry Appelman (piano), David Jernigan (bass), Tony Martucci (drums), Alejandro Lucini (drums/percurssion), Paul Wingo (guitar), Lyle Link (tenor, soprano sax).

Reviewed By: Jeff Becker
Purchase Link: iTunes and

With a plethora of jazz vocalist CDs being released everyday especially lately, how does one go about choosing a worthwhile CD to add to their collection. This brings me to my introduction of a Virginia based vocalist by the name of L’Tanya Mari’. You know so many times there is an assumption that because a vocalist is on a major label that somehow that CD will be head and shoulders above the rest of the pack. That is completely not the case in many circumstances and especially not lately. The major labels keep throwing CDs out to the industry and seeing what sticks and what doesn’t. Well, this lady sticks, so much so, you will find her sticking to each rib …