March 1998

Lee Greene
N.Y. Calling
Consolidated Artists

Saxophonist Lee Greene is a lyrically seasoned player and proves it throughout the 11 standards and originals of his inaugural album for the label he now manages with pianist Mike Longo. His evenly-matched side players flawlessly navigate the pleasing arrangements, competently introducing Greene's engaging, modern originals and illustriously remaking standards such the light-swinging "Sweet and Lovely," the warhorse "All or Nothing At All" and the easy-bopping take on Strayhorn's "U.M.M.G. (Upper Manhattan Medical Group)." Trumpeters Eddie Henderson or Richie Vitale, pianist John Di Martino, bassist Santi Debriano or Avishai Cohen and drummer Bruce Cox give their best to the team effort and distinguish themselves with top-notch solos.

Aside from his well-crafted arrangements, Greene shows virtuosity most apparent on his fluent quartet rendering of Hoagy Carmichael's warming ballad, "Skylark." New York may be calling, but now the world is listening to Green's supple, straight-up artistry on this enlightened laid-back session.

Originally published in March 1998
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