I recently read in a publication of note where Wayne Shorter was the greatest living jazz composer...
Sorry...I'm a Dave Brubeck guy.
Don't get me wrong, I love Wayne Shorter. As a tenor player myself if I don't like Wayne Shorter they come take my tenor away. Back to the subject at hand, The Brubeck Brothers Quartet have released LifeTimes which is a more than fitting tribute to the 92 year old Dave Brubeck as well as an eclectic tune up of some of the senior Brubeck's most loved compositions. LifeTimes includes two honorary Brubeck "brothers" in Mike DeMicco on guitar and Chuck Lamb on piano.
What makes a Dave Brubeck composition special is the challenging chord progression and evocative melodies. Timeless. To start things off we find a tune which is a Brubeck tribute to the great Duke Ellington, "The Duke" was composed in 1955 and aside from a fitting tribute keeps with the theme of the extended family both musical and otherwise. "My One Bad Habit" was a tune written for the first lady of jazz Ella Fitzgerald with the title originating as a response to Dave Brubeck asking her how she was doing. Fitzgerald's response was "my one bad habit is falling in love." Been there done that. Closing the set is perhaps the quintessential Brubeck tune of all time "Take Five" which seems to absorb a second line New Orleans style groove in 5/4.
The Brubeck Brothers Quartet is far from a cover band. From Chris to brother and drummer Dan Brubeck there is an organic originality that seems to have been passed down from father to sons. Mike DeMicco and Chuck Lamb more than earn the title of honorary brothers as their contributions to this release fit seamlessly into the mix. Jazz is indeed the Brubeck family business. A thriving business built on talent, originality and an indescribable gift from a higher power to make music that is sure to last for generations to come.
According to Chris Brubeck his father is all smiles when he hears how his sons are not only keeping his music alive but placing their own stamp on it as well.
A stellar recording. A must for a Brubeck fan!
Tracks: The Duke; Jazzanians; Kathy's Waltz; Go Round; Prezcence; The Girl From Massapequa; My One Bad Habit; Take Five.
Personnel: Chris Brubeck: electric bass, bass trombone; Dan Brubeck: drums; Mike DeMicco; guitar; Chuck Lamb: piano.