Garrison Fewell

City of Dreams

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Considering that this session was recorded without any rehearsal, the group sound is considerably polished and tight. Most of the tunes were composed by guitarist Garrison Fewell, who is joined on the front line by Italian saxophonist Tino Tracanna and a very good rhythm section of pianist George Cables, bassist Steve LaSpina, and drummer Jeff Williams. The music swings lightly, usually at a moderate pace, with a somewhat dated feel. Fewell is solidly enmeshed in the bop tradition, and his choice of classic tunes by Tina Brooks ("Theme for Doris"), Mal Waldron ("Soul Eyes"), and John Coltrane ("Naima") meshes nicely with his own. Tracanna has proved himself over and over again as the kind of player who can sit in and blow through almost any changes. Here, he is a strong addition on both soprano and tenor saxophone, blowing smoothly, firmly, and confidently. George Cables is a joy to hear as well, his piano anchoring the supporting rhythm trio, and also adding some fine improvisations. The leader, Garrison Fewell, performs flawlessly on guitar, gliding over the chords effortlessly. In the end, this comes across as a good, if fairly conventional, effort that affords a nice introduction to the abilities of Fewell.

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