Trumpeter Till Bronner, born in Germany and raised in Italy, is the Chris Botti of Europe. Like Botti, Bronner is photogenic, has dabbled in electronica and counts a jazz trumpet icon as his main influence, although he draws more from Chet Baker than Botti’s Miles Davis. Oceano is just now making it to the U.S., but the CD has been a bestseller in Germany for almost a year. That’s no surprise, as Bronner’s That Summer from 2004 peaked at #17 on Germany’s pop charts. Apparently, that cemented his rep as Germany’s top-selling homegrown jazz artist ever.
Although Bronner is proficient at writing his songs—indeed, his “A Distant Episode” is among the best tracks here—Bronner’s can’t-miss song selection goes a long way to seal his crossover appeal. It’s impossible not to be swayed by Bronner’s intimate vocals (yes, he sings) on the Bacharach-David standard “This Guy’s in Love With You,” and you gotta love Dean Parks’ uke playing. Elsewhere on this sexy soundtrack to cool jazz, Bronner enlists a trio of sexy female singers: Carla Bruni for “In My Secret Life,” Madeleine Peyroux for “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry” and Luciana Souza for her genteel Portuguese on the soft bossa of “Pra Dizer Adeus.”
Waiting for your next fix of Chris Botti? Till Bronner is here for you.