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Volume 10 Issue 2 - October 2004

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  • Toronto
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This Time Jake Wilkinson

This Time Jake Wilkinson Independent Toronto trumpeter Jake Wilkinson is a musical musician, skilled in playing (three instruments that I know of) and composing. Now in his thirties with his apprenticeship served, Jake has finally released a representative album. Despite what may be believed in these days of so much pallid jazz music, not every player can create worthy material. Ninety percent of what I hear is instantly forgettable, and even the best don't hit the gong every time. That noted, I'd guess that Wilkinson has done some serious selecting for "This Time", a jaunty first release of mostly original compositions independently issued and available from www.jakewilkinson.com. This release would not have sounded out of place in the '50s, alongside some Horace Silver, or Cannonball or Jazz Messengers. It's catchy, funky, and swings. The front line of trumpet and trombone (the interesting Josh Brown, who never blares or overblows) is a little uncommon in itself, adding a touch of interest. The rhythm section is fine, anchored by the veteran Mark Eisen'man, with bassist Graig Earle and drummer Sean Abedin. I applaud Wilkinson's acknowledgement that a recording differs from a live performance, presenting 13 tunes over the CD's 64 minutes when a typical club set might get in 5. The variety offered by shorter tunes (around 5 to 6 minutes, on average) keeps this disc on my player longer than most. I wish some liner notes were on offer: this is for most buyers, an introduction to the players and the compositions. Some information (and a contact address) would be welcome - you're going to want the next record, too. Diggin' In Jake Langley; Joey Ted O'Reilly DeFrancesco; Terry Clarke Alma Records ADC14292 62 The classic "organ trio" in jazz is usually led by the organist, but the foreman for the heavy lifting on "Diggin' In" is the Toronto guitarist Jake Langley. In addition, he's probably the least-known member of the group: at the console is the American B3 specialist Joey Defrancesco, and the drummer is Terry Clarke who has hundreds of international recordings under his belt. No problem though, as Langley proves he can share the bandstand with anyone (and in fact, now tours with DeFrancesco's group). This is a straight-ahead blowing session, recorded in Toronto on a single day. It presents a nice mix of bluesy music from jazz artists such as Dexter Gordon (Cheesecake), Stanley Turrentine (Sugar), and even Billie Holiday (God Bless The Child). The waltz-time Blues For Jim-San (by Toronto master Don Thompson) was no doubt selected by Langley as a tribute to his one-time teacher Jim Hall. On this release, though, I'd say another Langley influence, Pat Martino, is more dominant, with an appropriate touch of Wes Montgomery on that man's O.G.D. DeFrancesco's punchy touch is firmly underpinned by a dancing pedal bass, and Terry Clarke's precise-yet-loose drumming is perfect, offering the groove needed, yet with some filigrees to keep it creat'ive. I think special note should be made of the recorded sound: Langley is himself the producer, and has achieved a clean, accurate recording that sounds good everywhere. I've played it in a car, on a good sound system, and through tiny computer speakers, and it's always sounded right. Ted O'Reilly Concert Note: Jake Langley is featured in Doug Riley's "B3 Quartet" at the Montreal Bistro October 12-16. Blues in Orbit Duke Ellington Columbia/Legacy CK 87041 Duke Elli9g!Q!l Piaoo in too Backgroond """ Jso!:!ll'-tt>'7 .. j !,. *'9'->1*' "'"""' :t,V«i.

Elvis Costello ' ' Costello has channelled his thematic material into simple, formal structures that he uses in the disciplined manner of a bona fide classical composer. '' ELVIS COSTELLO The Washington Post Orchestra Michael Tilson Thomas

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