LAVERNE BUTLER, LOVE LOST AND FOUND AGAIN

Seizing the opportunity to record with producer Wayne Winborne and pianist/arranger Bruce Barth (a superior soloist and leader) during a brief visit to NYC in May 2012, Butler calls on top-tier players -- bassist Ugonna Okegwo (Tom Harrell), drummer Rudy Royston and the irrepressible and very busy tenor saxophonist Houston Person, who collectively bring an exemplary depth of feeling and swing to a mix of standards and Broadway tunes. The bluesy “Any Place I Hang My Hat Is Home” sets the mood with a tempo that brings out the best in Butler’s voice, its deep, chocolate-like resonance carries plenty of authority. “The Bluest Blues” is a fun number on which Butler invites the boys in her band for a call and response exchange – surely a crowd pleaser in her live act.  Another track, “Travelin’ Light,” is a finger-popping delight with an arresting walking bass line, and Butler sounds equally as glorious on the unexpected ballad, “In My Own Little Corner,” from Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella. Her timbre and precise enunciation makes her a compelling chanteuse and certainly deserving of wide popularity.

A word about the saxophonist: with more than 75 solo records under his name, Houston Person has perfected that burnished honeyed-tone that sounds so fine, and he shows no sign of stopping that flow. His current recording is called “Naturally” (HighNote,) another first-rate in-the-pocket studio gig with pianist Cedar Walton, bassist Ray Drummond and drummer Lewis Nash. Person’s sideman role on “Love Lost And Found Again” adds the cherry to Butler’s playlist and turns this dinner-party album into an entertainment that’s as good as they come. (11 tracks; 52:17 minutes)

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JAZZ IN SPACE: LAVERNE BUTLER, LOVE LOST AND FOUND AGAIN

Thursday, November 15, 2012

LAVERNE BUTLER, LOVE LOST AND FOUND AGAIN

Seizing the opportunity to record with producer Wayne Winborne and pianist/arranger Bruce Barth (a superior soloist and leader) during a brief visit to NYC in May 2012, Butler calls on top-tier players -- bassist Ugonna Okegwo (Tom Harrell), drummer Rudy Royston and the irrepressible and very busy tenor saxophonist Houston Person, who collectively bring an exemplary depth of feeling and swing to a mix of standards and Broadway tunes. The bluesy “Any Place I Hang My Hat Is Home” sets the mood with a tempo that brings out the best in Butler’s voice, its deep, chocolate-like resonance carries plenty of authority. “The Bluest Blues” is a fun number on which Butler invites the boys in her band for a call and response exchange – surely a crowd pleaser in her live act.  Another track, “Travelin’ Light,” is a finger-popping delight with an arresting walking bass line, and Butler sounds equally as glorious on the unexpected ballad, “In My Own Little Corner,” from Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella. Her timbre and precise enunciation makes her a compelling chanteuse and certainly deserving of wide popularity.

A word about the saxophonist: with more than 75 solo records under his name, Houston Person has perfected that burnished honeyed-tone that sounds so fine, and he shows no sign of stopping that flow. His current recording is called “Naturally” (HighNote,) another first-rate in-the-pocket studio gig with pianist Cedar Walton, bassist Ray Drummond and drummer Lewis Nash. Person’s sideman role on “Love Lost And Found Again” adds the cherry to Butler’s playlist and turns this dinner-party album into an entertainment that’s as good as they come. (11 tracks; 52:17 minutes)

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