Sting Like A Bee

Mike Longo
 
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Item# : CAP 1018
Speak No Evil; Love For Sale; Daahoud; Tell Me A Bedtime Story; Someone To Love; Westside Story Medley; Dance Cadaverous; Morning; Speak Low; Bird Seed; Checked Bags; Kush

There are many top tier jazz musicians who have recorded legacies that fall short of what their talent deserves.  Pianist MIKE LONGO is among those who fit this description.  Sting Like a Bee (Consolidated Artists Productions – 1018) helps to fill that void in a wonderfully effective way.  With bassist Bob Cranshaw and drummer Lewis Nash along for the ride, Longo undertakes a varied and consistently interesting musical voyage that is replete with adventuresome commitment to jazz improvisation.  Longo has chosen to use as the foundations for his adventures several jazz standards, “Speak No Evil” and “Dance Cadaverous” by Wayne Shorter, “Daahoud” by Clifford Brown, “Tell Me a Bedtime Story” by Herbie Hancock, “Morning” by Claire Fisher, and “Kush” by Dizzie Gillespie, the sole piano solo on the disc that provides an exhilarating closing to the program, plus two Broadway standards, “Love for Sale” and “Speak Low.”  In addition, Longo includes three original pieces, the boppish “Bird Seed,” “Checked Bags,” a languid blues, and a ballad titled “Someone to Love” that cries out for a lyric.  There is another selection, a superb medley of songs from Wes Side Story, done in tribute to one of his mentors, Oscar Peterson.  Cranshaw and Nash prove to me the perfect partners for this gem of an album from Mr. Mike Longo.  (www.jazzbeat.com)
Joe Lang-Jersey Jazz Magazine

 
#97, WINTER 2009-2010

Mike Longo Trio - STING LIKE A BEE: I've been listening to & reviewing Mike's splendid keyboards for many years now, most recently in issue #76 (a CD called "Oasis", with the New York State of the Art Jazz Ensemble), so getting this latest release in for review was pure pleasure, especially when I listened to the opener, "Speak No Evil"... pure energy, flawless execution from each/every player.  Longo's piano is joined by bass from Bob Cranshaw and drums by Lewis Nash.  This is the richest & most full-bodied trio work I've heard yet in 2009, and will excite jazz fans of every stripe.  It's like a "rebirth" of sorts.  Folks who were under the illusion that "jazz is dead" haven't heard Longo's brand of rich-toned & natural keys, I suspect.  When he rolls out his (original) "Checked Bags", my absolute favorite cut on the album, you'll hear what I'm talking about.  There's nothing more satisfying to my ears than the kind of rapport this keyboard establishes with the bass.  If you're looking for pure piano joy, bountiful & full of glee, you'll surely dig the trio's rendition of the Wayne Shorter tune "Dance Cadaverous".  It doesn't get any sweeter than this!  I'm not "just impressed."  I'm floored by how spontaneous the flow is here, and give this CD a MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED, as well as an "EQ" (energy quotient) rating of 4.8.  It also gets the "PICK" of this issue for "best jazz trio"!


-- Doctor Jazz

Mike Longo Piano
Bob Cranshaw Bass
Lewis Nash Drums

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On Sale:  14.97