Virtuosi Tasmania: Spirit of the MJQ

Virtuosi Tasmania: Spirit of the MJQ
Title: Spirit of the MJQ
Label: CD Baby

Virtuosi Tasmania's double bass player and founder Stephen Martin contends that jazz was "the chamber music of the 20th century". These musicians have explored the music of a number of jazz greats in concerts over the last few years. Since 2012 they have been presenting their tribute to the music of the Modern Jazz Quartet. The original MJQ featured pianist John Lewis and vibraphonist Milt Jackson. They exemplified the "cool jazz" style that emerged in 1950s New York. On this album Martin, along with Kelly Ottaway (vibraphone), Daniel Sulzberger (piano) and Matthew Ives (drums) present ten tracks featuring well-known MJQ compositions, including three original pieces by Ottaway and Ives composed "in the spirit of the MJQ". An elegant and sophisticated recreation of the original MJQ sound, the players lead off with a very cool take on Milt Jackson's "Bags' Groove", led by Ottaway and Ives with fine keyboard playing from Sulzberger and Martin's swinging bass line. Sulzberger's imaginative playing is much on display in John Lewis' "Django", with Ottaway's vibraphone work always superb throughout. The original compositions - Ottaway's "Cool Thing for Attractive People" and "Flow", as well as Ives' "Mr. Schifrin" - a tribute to Lalo Schifrin - are a definite bonus, adding considerably to the attractions of this CD. The recorded sound is vivid and well balanced, making this a must for jazz devotees, and others as well. Peter Donnelly, The Mercury, April 28 2014.

1.1 Bags' Groove
1.2 Skating in Central Park
1.3 Cool Thing for Attractive People
1.4 Blues in C Minor
1.5 Flow
1.6 Rise Up in the Morning
1.7 Mr Schifrin
1.8 Afternoon in Paris
1.9 Django

Virtuosi Tasmania: Spirit of the MJQ

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