Zane Massey

Soul of Grand Central

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This should have been a great recording; certainly the story behind it is colorful. A group of street musicians (a quartet led by Zane Massey on tenor and soprano) which plays regularly in New York's Grand Central Station, happened to be spotted by an executive from the new Bart label who signed them to a contract. Unfortunately the group's sound must have been considered too sparse or uncommercial for here it is augmented by a rapper, trivial keyboards and extra percussionists. Certainly the band (which apparently normally performs relaxed jazz standards with funky rhythms) does not sound like this when playing live. The poppish results (even with a few strong moments from Massey) are meaningless and annoyingly lightweight. Next time these musicians should be stronger and stick to their original vision.