Saturday, January 28, 2017

USA: Steve Khan - Backlog (2017)


On Steve's CD, ''Parting Shot'' (2011) Steve reassembled Eyewitness and set out to conjoin the looseness of their improvisations, while adhering to the tenets of Latin music and the all-important clave. ''Subtext'' (2014) was the title of Steve's next recording, and again, there was a subtitle in Spanish, ''Subtexto en Azul.'' On the album, Steve continued his explorations of the wondrous traditions of Latin music. Fans that enjoyed both ''Parting Shot'' and ''Subtext,'' will surely love ''Backlog''! ''Backlog'' of course, has a subtitle in Spanish, ''Asuntos Pendientes.'' On this album, really the 3rd in a series, Steve continues to expand the potential of the guitar in the context of Latin music, and here, the core group features: Rubén Rodríguez, Bobby Allende, Marc Quiñones, and joined for the first time by Mark Walker on drums. A series of old and dear friends, respected colleagues as guest artists added so much to the music, including: Rob Mounsey, Randy Brecker, Mike Mainieri, Bob Mintzer, and Tatiana Parra. In all, they perform Steve's arrangements of compositions by: Thelonious Monk, Greg Osby, Ornette Coleman, Bobby Hutcherson, and Andrew Hill. The recording features two gorgeous ballads: ''Our Town'' written by Steve' s father, Sammy Cahn and Jimmy Van Heusen, and ''Emily'' (Johnny Mandel-Johnny Mercer). Perhaps the great surprise of the album is the incredible interpretation of Stevie Wonder's ''Go Home.'