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Bebop Spoken There

Dave Puddy: "Eventually we paid our entrance money [to Eel Pie Island] and fought our way to one of the many bars where we could buy our Newcastle Brown and retire to the back of the heaving dancefloor. There must have been lights somewhere, but my memory remains of being in some dark cavernous wonderland." - (Just Jazz July 2020)

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11,618 (and counting) posts since we started blogging just over 12 years ago. 753 of them this year alone and, so far, 17 this month (July 5).

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As we all know there are no live gigs taking place in the immediate future. However, any links to jazz streaming that are deemed suitable - i.e. with a professional approach - will be considered for posting.

Monday, June 15, 2020

Album review: Mayita Dinos - The Garden is my Stage

Puerto Rican born Dinos, who also successfully specialises in sustainable landscape design, has combined the two artistic formats she is familiar with - gardens and jazz - for an album that is quite delightful.

Ornithology as a bossa! Is nothing sacred? And yet it works!  Dinos copes admirably and provides a meaningful lyric. It may be her debut album but the voice has been around the block a few times and the experience of a lifetime of singing shows in the tonality and the phrasing. Budman blows some tasty soprano.


Stevie Wonder's Come Back as a Flower maintains the bossa rhythm authenticated by Amarilio's guitar chording.

Pannonica. Music by Monk, lyrics by Hendricks, vocal by Dinos, interwoven flute accompaniment by Budman, guitar solo by Amarilio.

Woodstock. Any singer taking on a Joni Mitchell classic has to be up to the mark and Dinos offers an alternative that is neither better nor worse but different and maybe, to my ears, she just shades it - maybe.

Lullaby of the Leaves. A nice relaxed medium tempo swing with Cantos soloing on piano. A standard that deserves to be heard more often - but only if the singer can match Dinos!

Un Pais Con el Nombre de un Rio. Music and lyrics by Jorge Drexler and sung in Spanish. I haven't a clue what it's all about but it is interesting to conjecture!

Little Sunflower. Freddie Hubbard composed the melody and Rochelle House, the words. Michael Hunter takes on the composers role with some mellow flugel that enhances the vocal.

Double Rainbow. I thought it wouldn't be long before Antonio Carlos showed up and here Jobim teams up with American author/lyricist Gene Lees for a somewhat dreary track saved by the voice.

La Lola has Dinos with only bassist Davis for company. Very dramatic.

Strayhorn's A Flower is a Lonesome Thing continues with the garden theme and Hunter at his most lyrical, this time on trumpet, and more fluting from Budman.

Spanish Harlem again has the full band on board. It's done perfectly but, overall, I'm starting to find myself seeking a bit more diversity of tempo.

Willow Weep For Me never fails to draw the emotional side of any singer and Dinos is no exception. Fortunately, it's sung gently and sensitively without any excessive emoting. Rich Eames lays down some appropriate piano with Davis and Hass doing the necessary.

Agua de Beber - my favourite Jobim number (yes I do have one!) sung slower, much slower, than usual which gives it a completely new dimension although as the track evolves so does the music take on the more familiar tempo.

The booklet's artwork is worthy of special mention - images by Kio Griffith.

All in all an enjoyable album well worth checking out particularly if you're chilling out in your own garden with a glass of something Spanish or Portuguese or maybe just a coffee (as if!)
Lance

YouTube.

Mayita Dinos (vocals); Bill Cantos/Rich Eames (piano); Gabe Davis (double bass); Hussain Jiffrey (bass guitar); Dori Amarilio (guitar/arrangements); Michael Hunter (trumpet/flugel); Alex Budman (flute/sop sax/clarinet); Steve Hass (drums); Tiki Pasillas (perc).

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