Fingerprints/Dream Life (2010)

Pacific Coast Jazz label

Here’s a six piece band that you might not know yet. It veers between smooth and contemporary mainstream, sort of like The Crusaders and Spyro Gyra with an extra kick. The music centers around the writing of bassist Frederick Nichelson and keyboardist/programmers Richard Smith or Larry Davis, with lightly grooving tunes like “Acoustic Soul” and “What Were You Thinking” laying the groundwork for Shellyey Carrol’s tenor or Todd Parsnow’s guitar to lay down some slick work. What works best, however are the pair of hard bop tunes from way back when; Herbie Hancock’s “Tell Me A Bedtime Story” features some luscious flute work by Carrol, while Tadd Dameron’s chestnut “Lady Bird” is updated and polished like a Caddy with fins. Great updating of classics, and some fresh new stuff as well.

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