Puttin' On the Ritz
Seaton, who now teaches at the University of North Texas, is a virtuoso bassist who has performed with Woody Herman, Count Basie, Tony Bennett, George Shearing, Jeff Hamilton, Diane Schuur and John Fedchock, among many others. This album finds him in a trio setting with pianist Stephen Anderson and drummer Joel Fountain, a group that swings hard, handles flying tempos with ease and executes its business with a sense of ensemble that suggests the legendary trios led by Oscar Peterson, Gene Harris and Ahmad Jamal.
“Bernie’s Tune,” the opener, sets the stage with straightahead cooking and ensemble accents and fills that give notice of an experienced group. “Gone With the Wind,” initially in a two-beat rhythm, evolves into a powerful four-four walking groove with Seaton reminiscent of Ray Brown and Anderson conjuring up Erroll Garner. Seaton solos percussively. On “Moanin’ he scat-sings the melody along with his bowed bass. Fountain’s “Pretending,” which suggests Bill Evans, is the album’s most delicate number.
The title track and “Indiana” are uptempo romps. There are blazing, springy drum breaks and string-melting bowed bass solos and dazzling piano runs. This group has it together.