John Swana

Philly-New York Junction

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On this collaboration of Criss Cross recording artists, trumpeters John Swana and Joe Magnarelli join forces with tenor saxophonist Eric Alexander, pianist Joel Weiskopf, bassist Peter Washington, and drummer Kenny Washington, all veterans of many Criss Cross recording sessions, to perform four originals by the band members, three jazz classics, and two standards. Both Swana and Magnarelli are skilled improvisers on their chosen instruments and active performers on their city's respective jazz scenes. Philadelphia resident Swana has a slightly darker tone and plays the longer phrases, and Alexander's energetic tenor sax is a nice contrast to the twin trumpets. Favorites include Swana's up-tempo blues "Fat Cat," Magnarelli's introspective "Growing Pains," the swinging title track based on the changes to "Star Eyes," and the medium shuffle of Kenny Dorham's "Buffalo." This is a welcome addition to both player's discographies.

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