Playlist – 03 December 2014: exciting contemporary jazz

Click the Mix Cloud tab on this page to hear some new jazz, including from artists you may not have heard of before.

This week’s show began with some fierce blowing from a band with two sax players; band leader George Garzone accompanied by Jerry Bergonzi from the album Quintonic. Both are Boston USA born musicians, both are tutors at the Berklee School of Music and both have played with outstanding jazzmen. Garzone with Jack de Johnette, George Russell and Joe Lovano and Bergonzi with Dave Brubeck. More that that, their former students at Berklee include Joshua Redman and Mark Turner. The rest of the band comprises from Denmark Carl Winther on piano and Anders Mogensen on drums, and from Finland Johnny Aman. This is another highly recommended record available from

Carmen Lundy is a long-established Cosmic Jazz favourite. Her new album Soul to Soul does not disappoint. There is more of a nod towards soul than jazz compared to previous albums but this seems to only enhance the emotional intensity. On the two tunes this week she is accompanied by Patrice Rushen, of Forget Me Nots fame on piano. Rushen is, of course, a distinguished jazz musician in her own right having played with Joe Henderson and Herbie Hancock among others. Elsewhere on the album Geri Allen plays piano, Randy Brecker is there on trumpet and flugelhorn and Bennie Maupin pops up on tenor and alto saxophone. It’s an impressive line-up.

The list of exciting piano trios that we seem to come across these days seems endless and this week, again courtesy of Steve’s Jazz Sounds, we present the stunning Michael Wroblewski Trio from Poland with two tunes from their album Warsaw Blues.  Check them out. You can catch the trio below via YouTube playing with Terence Blanchard.

There was another tune from Norwich-based Mammal Hands and I also managed to slip in a Brazilian touch again this week from the Gilles Peterson directed Sonzeira album.

But the inclusion that might surprise some is that of Jarrod Lawson. His eponymous release on Dome Records – a soul/R’n’B label – is a current favourite of mine and one I picked up through his championing by Echoes, the monthly black music magazine produced in the UK. Jarrod Lawson is not strictly jazz, but he is also not strictly soul or R’n’B. He is made up of all of these categories. A sold-out night of two performances at Ronnie Scott’s this year is a sign that there is much for open-minded jazz fans to enjoy. Take a listen – it is truly in the spirit of our Cosmic Jazz playlists. The YouTube clip below of Jarrod Lawson also features trumpeter Farrnell Newton who played with him at Ronnie Scott’s.

  1. George Garzone –  Gorgonzola from Quintonic
  2. George Garzone –  The Gargoyle Returns  from Quintonic
  3. Carmen Lundy –  Kindred Spirits from Soul to Soul
  4. Carmen Lundy –  Soul to Soul from Soul to Soul
  5. Jarrod Lawson –  All That Surrounds from Jarrod Lawson
  6. Jarrod Lawson –  Redemption from Jarrod Lawson
  7. Michael Wroblewski Trio –  Warsaw Blues  from City Album
  8. Michael Wroblewski Trio –  Subway from City Album
  9. Sonzeira –  Xibaba (She-Ba-Ba) from Brasil Bam Bam Bam
  10. Mammal Hands – Tiny Crumbs from Animalia


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