Hilarie Grey

Hilarie’s Contributions


November 2002    Currents

Towards the Wind
Stephan Micus

Renowned for his experimentation with ethnic instruments played out of their normal cultural context, Bavarian composer Stephan Micus offers a meditative exploration of the duduk, an Armenian reed instrument, on Towards the Wind (ECM). This instrument, with...


November 2002    Currents

Groove Doctors
Rick Latham

True to their self-titled album, Rick Latham and his tight ensemble prove themselves Groove Doctors (RLP) on a collection of whirlwind tracks that touch on a range of styles, from funk to gospel. The foundation for these textured tunes is Latham's rock-solid...


November 2002    Currents

Play Date
Euge Groove

Saxophonist Euge Groove (nee Steven Eugene Grove) finds just the right mix of cage-rattling, urban-derived rhythms and muscular, old-style sax for an euge-ly entertaining Play Date (Warner Bros.). The album opener, "Slam Dunk," has a heavy feel, with multitracked...


November 2002    Currents

Over That Wave
Ed Johnson

Leading a tight ensemble through breezy, South American-derived arrangements, guitarist Ed Johnson provides appropriately spindly licks and silken chordings to Over That Wave (Cumulus), a mostly enjoyable recipe left somewhat undercooked in the vocal area...


November 2002    Currents

Meant to Be
Jenna Mammina

Imagine the vibratoless, fragile vocals of Joni Mitchell tinged with a jazzy sass and you might envision something like the slyly original style of Jenna Mammina. On Meant to Be (Mamma Grace), Mammina gives character-filled reads to what is primarily an...


November 2002    Currents

A Man About a Horse
Steve Tibbetts

Students of sonic painting will find lots of mesmerizing layers to peel on Steve Tibbetts' A Man About a Horse (ECM), a densely packed atmospheric ride with world-beat tribal percussion at its core. This sonic suite often depicts the clash of the organic...


November 2002    Currents

African Rhythms
Oneness of Juju

A forebearer of today's modern Afro/world-beat jazz gets a second spin with the rerelease of two '70s-vintage platters by Oneness of Juju. The brainchild of activist-musician J. Plunky Branch, Juju produced music infused with the politics of the moment as...


November 2002    Currents

South of Lafayette
Artie Traum

Artie Traum's elegantly crafted acoustic folk-jazz is still in evidence on his latest effort, South of Lafayette (Roaring Stream), a story cycle chronicling the bittersweet journeys and regrets of various characters. Traum sings as well as plays, with a...


September 2002    Currents

A Song for You
Kenny Rankin

Those who have seen Kenny Rankin perform live might be inclined to describe him as more troubadour than singer-songwriter. This is because the veteran performer is truly a musical storyteller, with his elastic tenor voice and guitar moods cutting to the...


September 2002    Currents

On the Beach
Edgar Wallace, Jr.

Detroit-based saxophonist Edgar Wallace Jr. takes the editing reins along with the keyboard controls for On the Beach (Lightyear/1st AMG), dressing some interesting melodic ideas in smooth-jazz motifs that have been played out so often they begin to feel...


September 2002    Currents

Jonathan Butler

Driven by a gentle, optimistic spirit flowing through music and lyric, Jonathan Butler's Surrender (Warner Bros.) is a transporting, joyful listen. On his first Warner label release, Butler strikes a perfect balance between world-beat undertones, universal...


September 2002    Currents

Brazilian Nights
Various Artists

Leave it to master arranger Jason Miles to successfully balance the organics of Brazilian musical traditions with layers of industrial rhythmic effects and lush keyboard arrangements. An acute attention to detail, contrast and blend makes Rio Wave (Q/Atlantic...


September 2002    Currents

The Game Has Just Begun
Henry Butler

A classically trained keyboardist with a growling, old-style vocal delivery, Henry Butler offers blues romps with a twist on The Game Has Just Begun (Basin Street). Butler handles not only trilled, Tin Pan Alley rag work on the piano on tunes like the album...


September 2002    Currents

You Have Reached Mike Phillips
Mike Phillips

Mike Phillips brings a fresh, original sax voice to his solo outing You Have Reached Mike Phillips (Hidden Beach), a stylish outing incorporating rugged shades of R&B, bebop and hip-hop in a lyrical whole. Where many contemporaries are content to tack on...


September 2002    Currents

A Thousand Stories
Turning Point

Brothers Thano and Demitri Sahnas (on guitar and bass, respectively) lead the quartet Turning Point through A Thousand Stories (A-440 Music Group) ranging from bright and breezy open-road jazz to frisky soul. The group strives for diversity on its journey...


September 2002    Currents

Both Sides
Braxton Brothers

Another set of siblings, the Braxton Brothers, play Both Sides (Peak Records) of urban jazz, from ripping, stinging soul workouts to wimpy overdressed retreads. Standouts in the former category include "Whenever I See You," rendered breezy and funky by brother...

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About Hilarie Grey