SmallsLIVE Documents Important NYC Jazz Scene with Four New Albums on May 22nd
Jesse Davis Quintet: Live at Smalls
Rick Germanson Quartet featuring Dr. Eddie Henderson: Live at Smalls
Ralph Lalama & BopJuice: Live at Smalls
Lage Lund Quartet: Live at Smalls
SmallsLIVE, the live-performance label of Greenwich Village jazz venue Smalls, will continue its tradition of documenting its storied scene with four new albums on May 22nd. The Live at Smalls series will feature the Jesse Davis Quintet, the Rick Germanson Quartet featuring Dr. Eddie Henderson, The Lage Lund Quartet and Ralph Lalama & BopJuice. Produced by acclaimed pianist and label founder Spike Wilner, the Live at Smalls series is dedicated to the idea that jazz is best heard in a live setting with minimal editing, captured in the full spontaneous moment it was created.
Jesse Davis Quintet: Live at Smalls marks the alto saxophonist’s first album as a bandleader since 2005. His quintet on Live at Smalls features Ryan Kisor (trumpet), Spike Wilner (piano), Peter Washington (bass), and Billy Drummond (drums). Davis has collaborated with Nicholas Payton and performed with Ray Brown, Milt Jackson, and featured in the Robert Altman movie, Kansas City. Kisor earned first prize the Thelonious Monk Institute’s trumpet contest at the age of 17, and has been a member of the Jazz at Lincoln Center orchestra since 1994. Peter Washington has worked with the Jazz Messengers, Tommy Flanagan, and the Blue Note 7.
Pianist and composer Rick Germanson finds inspiration in the hard-bop of the 50s and 60s, and for Live at Smalls, has brought together the quartet of Dr. Eddie Henderson (trumpet), Paul Gill (bass), Lewis Nash (drums). “Germanson offers serious chops humanized by the infectious pleasure he takes in the creative pianistic process,” writes Thomas Conrad for JazzTimes. “He also compels the listener's full attention with his thick chord voicings, irregular phrasing and fresh takes on group form.”
A widely respected member of the New York jazz scene, tenor saxophonist and composer Ralph Lalama has been a part of Smalls for over a decade, and a member of the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra for nearly 30 years. Ralph Lalama & BopJuice: Live at Smalls is his first recording with acoustic bass master Joel Forbes and Clifford Barbaro, who has drummed for Betty Carter, Charlies Tolliver and James Carter. “Lalama plays with deep feeling that has carried him through the big bands of Jones and Lewis, Buddy Rich, Woody Herman and the Carnegie Hall group led by Jon Faddis,” writes All About Jazz. “His muscular sound has also placed him in all kinds of small group contexts around New York City over the years, and earned him a spot in Joe Lovano's nonet.”
“Lalama plays with deep feeling that has carried him through the big bands of Jones and Lewis, Buddy Rich, Woody Herman and the Carnegie Hall group led by Jon Faddis. His muscular sound has also placed him in all kinds of small group contexts around New York City over the years, and earned him a spot in Joe Lovano's nonet when that group gets together for periodic gigs and tours.
Armed with a mastery of the standard repertoire and a growing body of original compositions, Lage Lund swings with great authority, displaying a staggering harmonic sophistication and a singularly fluid voice as a soloist. He also brings a “casually magnetic” presence to the stage, “channeling reticence into a whisper-quiet mystique” (New York Times). Lage Lund Quartet: Live at Smalls features Lage (guitar), Pete Rende (piano), Ben Street (bass), Marcus Gilmore (drums). Born and raised in Skien, Norway, Lund relocated to Boston after high school and attended Berklee College of Music. In 2002 he moved to New York and soon became the first electric guitarist ever to enroll at the Juilliard School of Music.
Founded in 1994 by jazz violinist, nurse and former Navy submariner Mitch Borden, Smalls began as a raw basement space that quickly became “the mecca for combos and big bands with a revolving cast of players, as well as a place for all-night jamming-the sort of jazz training ground largely missing from the scene since the '50s” (Downbeat). The club was forced to close after September 11th until 2004. In 2007, pianist Spike Wilner mortgaged his upper-west side apartment to partner with Borden. They began to restore the club back to its original feeling and also to bring back its original mission of supporting a new generation of talented musicians who would become the heirs to the mantle of jazz.
The Live at Smalls Album Series (May 22nd)
Jesse Davis Quartet
Jesse Davis - alto sax, Ryan Kisor - trumpet, Spike Wilner - piano, Peter Washington - bass, Billy Drummond - drums / Recorded on December 13, 14 & 15th, 2011
“I’ll Close My Eyes” (Kaye & Ried)
“Piece of the Apple” 18.55 (Davis)
“Body & Soul” (Heyman & Green)
“Pray Thee/Beyond The Storm” (Davis)
“Journey from the Lighthouse” (Davis)
Rick Germanson Quartet featuring Dr. Eddie Henderson
Rick Germanson - piano, Dr. Eddie Henderson - trumpet, Paul Gill - bass, Lewis Nash - drums / Recorded on July 15th& 16th, 2011
“So Tired” (Timmons)
“Surrey with the Fringe on Top” (Rodgers & Hammerstein)
“Shorter Waltz” (Germanson)
“The Single Petal of a Rose” (Ellington)
“Say It (Over & Over Again)” (Loesser & McHugh)
Ralph Lalama & BopJuice
Ralph Lalama - tenor sax, Joel Forbes - bass, Clifford Barbaro - drums
“Lester Left Town” – (Shorter)
“Mean What You Say” – (Jones)
“Da-Lamma's Da-Lemma” – (Lalama)
“Love Letters” – (Young)
“Nonchalant” – (Lalama)
“Wonderful, Wonderful” - (Edwards/Raleigh)
Lage Lund Quartet
Lage Lund - guitar, Pete Rende - piano, Ben Street - bass, Marcus Gilmore - drums Recorded on May 3rd & 4th, 2011
“Circus Island” (Lund)
“Party Of One” (Lund)
“All Across The City” (Hall)
“Intro To Soliloquy” (Rende) “Soliloquy” (Lund)