Reeds And Deeds – Tenor Time (2011)

FrontCover1Reuniting for their third outing under the Reeds and Deeds banner, tenor saxophonists Eric Alexander and Grant Stewart lock horns once morein a spirit of mutual admiration. While their collaborative ethos makes ‘Tenor Time’ the thoroughly musical affair that it is, Eric and Grant bring to the date that unmistakable charge of friendly rivalry as well. Joined by the formidable roster of David Hazeltine (piano), John Webber (bass), and Joe Farnsworth (drums) – Eric’s band mates in the all-star sextet One For All – this two-tenor front line means business. The program, rich in standard repertoire (‘Tenderly’) and post bop classics (Donald Byrd’s ‘Omicron’), also includes a cutthroat tenor battle on the burning ‘Rise and Shine,’ made famous by John Coltrane. (Press release)

This is a wonderful blowing session, an updated version of the bluesy, swinging Gene Ammons – Sonny Stitt quintet sound. Grant Stewart takes the Ammons role, favoring the tenor’s lower register and playing with a rich, throaty burr on broad, relaxed lines that never quite leave the melody behind. Eric Alexander’s lines are busier, higher in the tenor’s register, and more apt to stray into quasi-Free sound effects; together, their sound is as potent as a bottle of blended Scotch. It’s a joy to listen to.

David Hazeltine, John Webber, and Joe Farnsworth are the first-rate rhythm section on this program of swingers. The two ballads are “Tenderly,” a lovely duet for Alexander and Hazeltine, and “Isn’t It a Lovely Day,” a quartet feature for Stewart. (by Roochak)

Recorded June 3, 2010 in Brooklyn, New York

BackCover

Personnel:
Eric Alexander (saxophone)
Joe Farnsworth (drums)
David Hazeltine (piano)
Grant Stewart (saxophone)
John Webber (bass)

GrantStewart+Eric Alexander01Tracklist:
01. Omicron (Byrd) 8.25
02. Crying Blues (Harris) 7.03
03. Tenderly (Gross) 6.49
04. Make Someone Happy (Styne) 8.47
05. Amsterdam After Dark (Coleman) 9.45
06. Isn’t It A Lovely Day (Berlin) 6.21
07. R & D Bossa (Hazeltine) 7.20
08. Rise ‘N’ Shine (Youmans) 5.45

GrantStewart+Eric Alexander02

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