REVIEW: Antoinette Montague – Behind The Smile

If you're like most of us you're starting to get extremely tired of Winter, and if you're located somewhere in the snow belt you might even be suffering from a touch of cabin fever and could use a liberal application of something warm and soothing. How about some mellow vocals from a singer at the … Continue reading REVIEW: Antoinette Montague – Behind The Smile

REVIEW: Nilson Matta & Brazilian Voyage – Copacabana

Let's get this out of the way first: sorry, Barry Manilow fans, but the title song of this album is not the one made famous by your idol. It is instead one of the best of the original compositions provided for the album by its featured star, Brazilian bassist Nilson Matta, who named it for … Continue reading REVIEW: Nilson Matta & Brazilian Voyage – Copacabana

REVIEW: Tierra Negra & Muriel Anderson – New World Flamenco

Flamenco music is one of those instantly recognizable genres, the kind that immediately takes the listener to a familiar place. In this case, it inspires in me a mental image of a beautiful dancer with flashing eyes, clicking castanets, and a rose in her teeth; backed by a dark, brooding guitarist. A new album on … Continue reading REVIEW: Tierra Negra & Muriel Anderson – New World Flamenco

REVIEW: Pablo Menendez & Mezcla – I’ll See You In Cuba

As someone who has reviewed his share of Cuban music, I have to confess that I jumped to a premature conclusion when I received my review copy of the latest album from Pablo (Paul) Menéndez. I pretty much expected I'll See You In Cuba, coming out in early January on the Zoho label, to be … Continue reading REVIEW: Pablo Menendez & Mezcla – I’ll See You In Cuba

REVIEW: Kelley Suttenfield – Where Is Love?

I would think that an artist would encounter a lot of obstacles in generating a debut album. First of all, they're almost certainly not well-known, so even getting the album made is an accomplishment. But even beyond that, they still have to get the album exposed to music fans, who will hopefully find that the … Continue reading REVIEW: Kelley Suttenfield – Where Is Love?

REVIEW: Eddie Allen – Jazzy Brass For The Holidays

Eddie Allen is a busy man these days. Last month I reviewed the veteran jazz trumpeter's new album as the leader of a large band called the Aggregation. That effort was a solid collection of big-band music, and the band was -- well -- big, with something like 17 members. Now Eddie is fronting a … Continue reading REVIEW: Eddie Allen – Jazzy Brass For The Holidays

REVIEW: Wayne Toups & Zydecajun – Live 2009

For a lot of years, one of the hottest tickets in Cajun/Zydeco music has been the live show of Wayne Toups and Zydecajun. Toups himself is almost worth the price of admission, not only for his flamboyant shirts, flowing hair, and lively squeeze-box play, but also for his searing vocals. He's backed by an outstanding … Continue reading REVIEW: Wayne Toups & Zydecajun – Live 2009

REVIEW: The Aggregation – Groove’s Mood

I've always been partial to the music of the big-band era, even though its heyday was a little before my time. I sometimes even feel a little envy for anyone who was around in those days to experience the music first hand, but I always have to remind myself that even today there are still … Continue reading REVIEW: The Aggregation – Groove’s Mood

REVIEW: Ramsey Lewis – Songs From The Heart; Ramsey Plays Ramsey

One of the things I enjoy about reviewing new albums is that it sometimes opens my eyes to artists who might be a little unfamiliar to me. But it's also a pleasure when I rediscover a legendary three-time Grammy winner who is still a vibrant and active force in music. That would be Ramsey Lewis. … Continue reading REVIEW: Ramsey Lewis – Songs From The Heart; Ramsey Plays Ramsey

REVIEW: Buckwheat Zydeco -Lay Your Burden Down

Stanley Dural, Jr.   November 14, 1947 - September 24, 2016 It's probably an overused expression, but it's difficult to avoid the label of "living legend" when describing someone like Stanley "Buckwheat" Dural, Jr. The Louisiana native, whose stage name is also the name of his group -- Buckwheat Zydeco -- is still going strong after … Continue reading REVIEW: Buckwheat Zydeco -Lay Your Burden Down