Reference: FSRCD 5064
Bar code: 8427328650649
In February and March 2020, just before the pandemic, we did the second European tour with this quintet, for me truly a dream-team on and off the bandstand, bringing together five musicians from different parts of the world who share the same love: classic swinging “New York Blue Note Jazz.” New York has been the world capital of jazz since decades, I still remember the last days of August 2007 when I first got there and had the chance to listen to my idols such as Cedar Walton, Jimmy Cobb, Louis Hayes, and many more. One of them was Joe Magnarelli who I first heard with the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra on a Monday night, back then I never thought that I would play music with him more than 10 years later.
Joe Magnarelli has been one of the world’s leading trumpeters for three decades. He moved to New York in 1986 and has worked since then with the Lionel Hampton Big Band, Toshiko Akiyoshi, the Buddy Rich Band, Maria Schneider, the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra, and many more. Born in St. Petersburg, Dmitry Baevsky moved to New York in 1996 to study at the famous New School and has since become an integral part of the New York jazz scene. Jeb Patton is one of the outstanding pianists of the younger generation. He studied with Sir Roland Hanna and Jimmy Heath and is a permanent member of the “Heath Brothers” and the “Jimmy Heath Generations Quintet” since then. Further, he worked with Etta Jones, Peter Washington, Lewis Nash, Steve Nelson, Jimmy Cobb, Jackie McLean, Frank Wess, James Moody... His personal, swinging style, presents the entire history of jazz piano from Art Tatum through Phineas Newborn to Cedar Walton. I met Fabien Marcoz when I moved to Paris in 2012, he is one of the finest bassists in Europe and has accompanied many international jazz soloists including true giants such as Harold Mabern.
In the middle of our 2020-tour we got the real gift of doing a recording like in the old days. Jacques Person, organizer of the “Jazz at Le Vauban”-concerts, invited us to stay in Brest for two days to do a studio/live-album under the direction of our mutual friend Jordi Pujol, producer and owner of the internationally well-known jazz label “Fresh Sound Records” in Barcelona. The circumstances were perfect, we spent a wonderful weekend at “Le Vauban”; the concert venue was in the basement, the restaurant/bar on the ground floor and the hotel rooms just upstairs. Besides, Jacques Person took us to great restaurants in the area, so we could really enjoy, relax, have a good time and then focus on the music. We took a very early flight from Copenhagen to arrive in Brest on Saturday by noon, in the afternoon we already recorded a whole set of music under studio conditions without audience. On Sunday evening we did the sold-out concert for a wonderful and warm public, a memorable experience for all of us! What you hear on this release is the result of this “Weekend At Le Vauban”, our selection of two Saturday-no audience and seven Sunday-live tracks from these two days in Brest!
The repertoire of the band follows the timeless “Blue Note” recordings, including a nice variety of classics by masters such as Cedar Walton and Jimmy Heath, well-known standards and standard-arrangements (Minority, arranged by Jeb Patton) and two originals by Joe Magnarelli (81 Points, dedicated to Kobe Bryant) and Jeb Patton (Crystalline). All compositions require strong section playing on the melodies by Joe and Dmitry, supported by an active rhythm-section, and provide the perfect ground for extensive soloing for all the band members.
It was a great pleasure to be part of this, thanks to Jacques and Jordi for making it happen and to Mags, Dmitry, Jeb and Fabien for great playing and wonderful moments on the road! Very much looking forward to seeing you all again, having a glass of wine and of course playing music together!!!
—Bernd Reiter, November 2020