Embrace the moment when two harp traditions meet! Widely recognized for their individual harp talents, Olov is a nyckelharpa master who drives the Swedish harp boldly forward while Catriona, a Celtic harper like no other, is known for playing her Scottish harp to 'sound like an orchestra'. Catriona's creative arrangements and innovative rhythmic use of her harp together with Olov's striking nyckelharpa tunes creates a remarkable musical whole . It's the meeting of two harps but most significantly, two fine musicians who give life to this unique world of music known as 'The Auld Harp'.
Alto saxophonist/composer McPherson has been playing masterful bop and its extensions for several decades. He shows no signs of slowing down with this extraordinary set of eight compositions, half that he wrote, split into two bop or bop-informed standards, two low-key numbers, two in the mid-rhythmic range, and two modal ostinato-based figures as vehicles for improvising. All are spiced by the bubbling conga playing of Bobby Sanabria and solidly reinforced by the battleship dense musings of pianist Mulgrew Miller, bassist Ray Drummond, and drummer Victor Lewis, an undeniably brilliant backing ensemble. Listen to the fluidity of McPherson's on any of these cuts, and you'll know why he remains the eminent extension of Charlie Parker.
Bebop is the thing on this excellent outing as altoist Charles McPherson and pianist Barry Harris do their interpretations of Charlie Parker and Bud Powell. With trumpeter Carmell Jones, bassist Nelson Boyd and drummer Al "Tootie" Heath completing the quintet, the band romps through such bop classics as "Hot House," "Nostalgia," "Wail" and "Si Si" along with an original blues and "Embraceable You." A previously unissued "If I Love You" is added to the CD reissue. McPherson and Jones make for a potent frontline on these spirited performances, easily recommended to fans of straightahead jazz.
For the second of his three Mainstream sessions (one that has been reissued on CD), the bebop altoist Charles McPherson pays tribute to Billie Holiday; in fact, "Siku Ya Bibi" means "Day of the Lady" in Swahili. The emphasis is mostly on ballads, with "Miss Brown to You" and "Lover Come Back to Me" being exceptions. Four of the eight selections find McPherson backed by ten strings arranged by Ernie Wilkins, while the remainder of the date has the altoist joined by a rhythm section that includes pianist Barry Harris. Although not quite up to the level of his upcoming, more freewheeling Xanadu sessions, this is a fine outing. Highlights include the two aforementioned cooking pieces, "Lover Man," "Good Morning Heartache," and "I'm a Fool to Want You."
JD McPherson presents what he calls "A truly romantic garage rock record". Undivided Heart & Soul produced by Dan Molad (Lucius) & McPherson, and developed largely in the studio (that studio being the historic RCA Studio B in Nashville), carries a sense of immediacy and irreverence. "In writing this record, I threw several handfuls of caution to the wind. Lyrically, I was allowing myself to be exposed in a way I never have before. Concurrently, maybe as some sort of a self defense mechanism, the guitars got fuzzier and louder. The first day at RCA was like being in church… by the second day, it was a high school band's rehearsal space."
Charles McPherson is an American jazz alto saxophonist born in Joplin, Missouri, and raised in Detroit, Michigan, who worked intermittently with Charles Mingus from 1960 to 1974, and as a performer leading his own groups.