Jeb Patton - New Strides

album review


Release date: November 17th 2009

Availability: CD, MP3 Download

 Jeb Patton: New Strides cover

'New Strides' is Jeb Patton's debut as a leader on the MaxJazz Piano Series. Yet his depth of experience and understanding of the music immediately comes through.

After studying at Duke University and then at the Aaron Copland School of Music (where he studied with pianist Sir Roland Hanna and Jimmy Heath) he has been the pianist in the Heath Brothers Band for over ten years in addition to continuing to pursue classical music directions and his own jazz trio work such as this.

Bassist David Wong (a New Yorker, a graduate of Julliard School who has played with Roy Haynes, Clark Terry, Illinois Jacquet, Wynton Marsalis, Christian McBride, David Hazeltine and Jim Rotondi, amongst many others) is from the same band and the understanding developed over time with Jeb Patton is apparent.

The principal drummer is Pete Van Nostrand (also a Julliard School graduate busy on the New York jazz scene since 2000, playing with Aaaron Parkes, Jim Rotondi, Kenny Baron and Mike LeDonne amongst many others) who is regularly appearing in line-ups featuring Jeb Patton and David Wong. As a trio, their playing is tight and empathetic.

Jimmy Heath on saxophone and drummer Albert "Tootie" Heath on drums put in guest appearances. This is the line up of the Heath Brothers album 'Endurance', released just over three months before 'New Strides'.

It is a well chosen programme which features the Jeb Patton originals 'The Music Goes On' and 'Street Song', Jimmy Heath's 'Cloak And Dagger' and three standards - 'If Ever I Would Leave You' (Lerner/Lowe), 'Dream Dancer' (Cole Porter) and the Robin/Chase/Whiting composition 'My Ideal', established as a jazz standard by John Coltrane on the album 'Bahia'.

The E.Y. Harburg/Harold Arlen ballad 'Last Night When We Were Young' is played as a piano/ sax duet between Jeb Patton and Jimmy Heath and is one of the album stand-outs.

Albert 'Tootie' Heath takes over the drum spot on 'Street Song and 'Cloak And Dagger'.

Another stand-out is the Monk-ish uptempo blues 'Sir Roland', a dedication to mentor Sir Roland Hanna and a further Jeb Patton original. Somewhere out there is an unreleased album 'Jeb Patton plays Sir Roland Hanna,' made for the Rmi label.

There is much to enjoy in this hour of intelligent and uplifting music from a trio that should rightly become established as leaders in the highly competitive jazz trio field.

Highly recommended.

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