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Saturday, June 16, 2018

CD Review: Gary Brumburgh - Moonlight

(Review by Ann Alex)
Gary Brumburgh is a trained actor and it shows in his authentic interpretation of these songs. I’d like to suggest that all jazz singers should study some acting. Brumburgh comes from Buffalo, New York. He has acted in theatre, films and television, but in 2003 he decided to focus on music, and he performed in jazz clubs around Los Angeles. This was interrupted by serious illness from 2012, but he was able to return to singing in 2016. He had issued a CD in 2008, and Moonlight is his second CD.  
The disc is made up of jazz standards and reinterpretations of pop songs from the 1960s and 70s. The musicians are of stellar quality, including Larry Koonse, who has played on the last 3 CDs that I’ve reviewed, so I’m starting to feel that I know this man personally. That’s what I thought when I heard track 10, Haven’t We Met, a duet with Gail Pettis, sung to a typical trio of piano, bass, drums. Other standards are Sweet Georgia Brown (fast, lively, lots of playing with the words, and a musical reference to Fascinating Rhythm); Eggplant (saucy, fun song with some lively flute); and a moving rendition of What’ll I Do, and also I’ll Close My Eyes; Moonlight; My World Is Empty Without You.

Then we have the Beatles Day Tripper with a bass playing over strong piano chords; Wichita Lineman (done as a ballad with a flowing rich piano and clanky bass); Sting’s Heavy Cloud No Rain  (a song of foreboding, a rather jazz-rock version); and Just A Little Lovin’ (Early In The Mornin’) which includes extra lyrics from our singer.

Definitely a CD worth hearing. It was issued on June 1, 2018, on Cafe Pacific Records. See www.garybrumburgh.com
Ann Alex
Gary Brumburgh (vocals); Terry Trotter (piano on 4, 5, 11); Jamieson Trotter (piano on other tracks, arrangements); Bob Sheppard (sax, flute); Pat Kelley (guitar on 1, 4, 5, 6); Larry Koonse (guitar on 2, 9); Gabe Davis (bass); Christian Euman (drums on 1, 3, 4, 5, 7, 11); Conor Malloy (drums on 2, 6, 8, 9, 10)

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