Dale Fielder

Romance Serenade

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Saxophonist Fielder has been plying his craft in California, prepping with a couple of studio sessions as a prelude to this club date which he recorded in one night at the Lime Leaf in La Jolla. The always fresh-sounding pianist Jane Getz flavors and spices this quartet, while bassist Trevor Ware and drummer Thomas White lay down the swing. Fielder's sound, mostly on alto, is slightly edgy, bop-oriented, well-rounded, and a bit thin but very pleasing. Of these ten selections lasting over 70 minutes in total, Fielder wrote four; the rest are well-worn and familiar standards that are played lovingly. Getz is most impressive as she's comping with chords and playing some stringently melodicized lines with a sensitive touch and wellspring of emotional reserve. She elasticizes the easy bossa version of Herbie Hancock's "Speak Like a Child," spreading wings on her invigorating solo. She and the band easily negotiate the tricky changes of Scott LaFaro's "Gloria's Step" and the midtempo bop of "How High the Moon." The piano and saxophone coalesce during the ballad "All My Tomorrows," which segues smoothly and immediately into the upbeat "I Love You." Fielder's soprano sings out on "Diane," as well as on the easy bossa of "Sensuous Universe" and the title track. Fielder is perhaps at his most excitable and animated on "Swingin' With C" expertly handling compact melodicism, urged by the piano comping of Getz. This is a fine mainstream jazz set sans frills or any groundbreaking ideals. Fielder is a saxophonist who has established his professionalism over the past decade. Until he takes it to the next level, this stands as a promising document of his potential, and a reminder of how the underappreciated Getz has waited in the wings as an impending star. Recommended.

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