Jeff Kashiwa: Walk A Mile

Taking a break from his day job with the Rippingtons, saxophonist Jeff Kashiwa treads some different ground on Walk a Mile (Fahrenheit FR9603-2; 52:06). The talented wind player experiments with a variety of textures and moods-from the brassy and warmly inspirational “Givin’ In,” to the loping, urban-toned title track, both of which showcase some soulful, economical work in lean settings. Kashiwa pairs up well with keyboardist Dave Kochanski (who shares writing credits on the album), as well as with gypsy guitarist Marc Antoine, whose pretty, driving acoustic work support the swirling Brazil feel of “August Moon” and the knuckling Latin rhythms on “Rise.” Both of these pieces feature Kashiwa’s fine flute work, which is especially lithe and haunting in the alto tones of “Rise.” Throughout the album, Kashiwa takes advantage of his time away from the Rips to spread his wings as a soloist. The results are well worth checking out.