Heading back from Huron SD tonight I listened to Ken Laster's In the Groove podcast and he played a couple of cuts from Lovano's new album: Cross Culture. Both were excellent, so I spent some of my eMusic dollars to land the album.
Lovano is the real thing. His "Us Five" group is superb. Lovano plays on the edge of hard bop and avant garde, with all due deference to both sides of that edge. He is a master at squeezing out every last bit of juice from a melody.
I am playing 'Blessings In May' and 'Star Crossed Lovers'. Here is the lineup:
- Bass – Esperanza Spalding (tracks: 1, 5, 8, 10), Peter Slavov* (tracks: 2 to 4, 8, 9, 11)
- Drums – Otis Brown III
- Drums, Whistle, Balafon – Francisco Mela
- Electric Guitar [Special Guest] – Lionel Loueke (tracks: 2 to 4, 6, 7, 11)
- Piano – James Weidman
- Tenor Saxophone, Soprano Saxophone [G Mezzo Soprano Saxophone], Soprano Saxophone [Aulochrome], Tárogató [Tarogato], Percussion [Oborom Drum], Gong [Gongs], Shaker [Shakers], Percussion [Puddle Drums] – Joe Lovano