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STEVE TURRE, trombone & seashells
BRUCE WILLIAMS, alto & soprano sax
XAVIER DAVIS, piano
GERALD CANNON, bass
WILLIE JONES III, drums
CHEMBO CORNIEL, congas on track 9 only
02. Lover Man
03. Funky Thing
04. Trayvon’s Blues
05. It’s Too Late Now
06. With a Song in My Heart
07. ’S Wonderful
10. Spiritman/All Blues
Steve Turre, one of the world’s preeminent jazz innovators releases, "Spiritman", his debut recording for Smoke Sessions Records. It’s something of a back-to-basics project for Turre who says, “It’s the first record I’ve done in a long time that really focuses on my trombone playing.” It also employs an ideal foil in saxophonist Bruce Williams whose timbre on soprano and alto is a perfect match for the trombone. "Spiritman" features several of Turre’s new compositions including "Trayvon's Blues" a poignant, moving, jazz tone poem; "Bu" the record opener dedicated to his mentor Art Blakey; "Funky Thing" written for the Saturday Night Live Band; and "Nangadef" written for Senegalese percussionist Abdou Mboup and featuring Chembo Corniel on congas. His spirited rendition of Miles Davis’ “All Blues” begins with his own mystical "Spiritman" played on shells. It’s a piece he performed to open the UN's International Jazz Day concert in Osaka, Japan in 2014. This “All Blues” introduction is also the first recording of a newly developed technique where Turre plays into a piano with the pedal down and the strings open. The shell’s sound vibrates the open strings creating an ethereal, mystical, but acoustic sound. The rest of the band, Xavier Davis, Gerald Cannon, and Willie Jones III, know just what Turre wants and needs from a rhythm section and they help deliver this unforgettable music that also includes swinging standards and classic ballads. It’s music designed to make you feel better. As Turre explains in his thoughts about this recording and music in general, “Music is about giving and about searching. Without spirit, music is just notes.” It’s a philosophy of life and music that continues to produce inspired results.