|Dreambox Media/Encounter Records|
"Heart and Soul" (DMJ-1142)
"YEAH, I Said It..." (DMJ-1086)
"Old Head" (EAR-1026)
Mike's latest, recorded LIVE at Chris' Jazz Cafe', presents two Joe Henderson tunes, a Cedar Walton classic and six originals by electric / acoustic bassist Boone and/or his personnel: John Swana, EVI and valve trombone; Tim Brey, acoustic / electric keyboards; Anwar Marshall, drums; and Rhenda Fearrington, guest vocalist.
"Shade of Jade" / "Tot Ziens" / "Serenity" / "John/Wayne" / "Bolivia" / "This Moment's Sweetness" / "Heart and Soul" / "Rest in Peace" / "Looney Blues"
"Mike Boone Quartet in a 2014 live performance at Chrisí Jazz Cafť in Philadelphia, where his local followers cheer on song after song with the enthusiasm appropriate to the decorum of a nightclub where people go to listen to the music. Respected in Philadelphia for his commitment to the jazz scene there, as well as for his dedication to assisting younger musicians, Booneís years of professional experience have allowed him to immerse himself in the music to the extent that he himself becomes the instrument to the musicís message. A believer in musicís efficacy for healing and uniting, Boone aptly reflects his faith in musicís power with the title of his most recent album, 'Heart and Soul.' The performance teams Boone with John Swana, with whom Boone has performed often in the past. Another loyal Philadelphian who chose to establish a jazz career there, Swana, initially a trumpeter, plays EVI and valve trombone, showing an instantaneous communication with Boone created by years of work together. True to his commitment to the succeeding generation of jazz talent, Boone rounds out his quartet with next-generation pianist Tim Brey and drummer Anwar Marshall.
Boone chose to open the engagement with Joe Hendersonís 'Shade of Jade,' and Hendersonís spirit in their music recurs. Hendersonís 'Serenity' appears too as Swana, on valve trombone, captures the compositionís sense of ease and resolution, expressed through originality, slanting approaches to improvisational surprise, and swing. That Henderson influence carries through to their own pieces, like 'John/Wayne,' the groupís confident immersion in the song instead of flash being an appropriate follow-up to 'Serenity.' A tribute to Cedar Walton occurs with the electrified version of 'Bolivia,' which features one of jazzís immediately recognizable bass vamps. Booneís slow minor-key meditation, 'Rest in Peace,' allows Brey to develop an extended solo of haunting beauty. The title track, a statement of Booneís belief about musicís influence on the quality of life, contains its own memorable, lilting melody that, like the other compositions, veers between contained intensity and reassuring calmness. Marshallís fluid and respectful work on drums energizes the group, particularly on 'Looney Blues,' as he switches from free-rhythm soundscape to a fast swing. Fittingly, the off-the-beat ending reflects the accents of the albumís first tune, 'Shade of Jade.'"
The "backbone of a thousand gigs", "one of the mainstays of the Philly jazz scene" (Phila.
Inquirer), MIKE BOONE played bass for Buddy
Rich and has also worked with Leslie Uggams, Clark Terry, Mose Allison
and Ben Vereen.
As Mike states in his liner notes, "This is not a typical jazz album..." but Mike is not your typical musician! Besides narrating, the bassist does piano, keyboards, percussion and background vocals along with Sam Dockery, Jim Holton, Don Wilson, Elio Villafranca, Sid Simmons, Aaron Graves, Orrin Evans & Uri Caine: keyboards; Mickey Roker, Wes Laury, Dave Stoller, Leon Jordan, Ronnie Burrage, Erik Johnson, Gene Jackson, Donald Edwards & Eddie Jones: drums; John Swana on EVI; saxophonists Stan Wilson, Jaleel Shaw, Max Gast, Ralph Bowen & Victor North; Roger Prieto, trumpet; guitarist Ron Jennings; violinist John Blake; percussionists Duke Wilson, Marlon Simon, Oretes Vilato, John Santos & Doc Gibbs; plus Candi'ce Hinmon and many more.
"Disclaimer" / "Blues According to Sam" / "Mom Mom (Prelude)" / "Mom Mom" / "Blues According to Stan" / "Mom Mom (Reprise)" / "Buddy Rich Pt. I" / "Buddy Rich Pt. II" / "El Bajo Loco" / "Buddy Rich Pt. III" / "We Both Tried" / "It's Raining" / "Ortlieb's" / "Contradiction" / "Blues According to Jaleel" / "Bittersweet" / "Electrojazz" / "Double Bassing" / "Angst" / "Barry Kiener" / "Contradiction (Reprise)" / "Ben Vereen"
What the critics say:
"'YEAH, I Said It...' is an unusual kind of musical biography, both spoken and played. Boone narrates much of it, talking about his late mother and her nonjudgmental Christianity, and then playing a churchlike ditty as a wordless tribute.
Ortlieb's is represented here by several live recordings of Boone playing in the club with such classic Philly collaborators as pianists Sam Dockery and Sid Simmons and drummer Mickey Roker.
Other formidable players Boone has known also are here, including altoist Jaleel Shaw, pianists Orrin Evans and Uri Caine, violinist John Blake Jr. and a pleasant, R&B-laced singer, Candi'ce Hinmon.
One of the highlights of this highly personal CD is a salty rant, presented in all its obscene glory, from drummer Buddy Rich, whom Boone backed in the early and mid-1980s. Cool, too, is how the bassist looks past Rich's outburst to appreciate his value as a player and leader."
- Philadelphia Inquirer
This project features Verve recording artist Uri Caine & Jason Shattil (piano), CrissCross recording artist John Swana (trumpet), and Byron Landham (drums).
"I Got Rhythm"/"For Mingus and Jaco"/"Stella By Starlight"/"Alone Together"/"Up Jumped Spring"/"Old Head"/"Apocalyptic Interlude #1"/"Bluzeneph"/"Rest In Peace"
Download individual tunes or entire CDs in MP3 format!
What the critics say:
"The album features four standards and four original tunes, with arrangements by Boone and pianists Jason Shattil and Uri Caine. The core group on the recording is Boone on acoustic and electric bass, Jason Shattil on piano, and Byron Landham on drums. Five tracks are augmented with John Swana on trumpet or flugelhorn, while vocalist Brenda Smith, pianist Uri Caine, guitarist Gregory Davis, and percussionist Rich Posmontier appear on one track each.
Old Head opens with a duet rendition of the Gershwin classic 'I Got Rhythm' performed by Boone and singer Brenda Smith. It serves as a declaration, as Boone's deft bass playing thumps along as solid as any drummer, playing the changes so adeptly that one forgets there are no chordal instruments in the arrangement. It's a feat he repeats with nearly every bass solo on the album.
The next standard, 'Stella By Starlight,' features an intro in 6/8 with piano accompanying the theme on a bowed bass, before launching into a quartet setting of the tune with solos by Swana, Boone, and the thunderous drumming of Landham taking center stage.
The original 'Old Head' proceeds as a hard bop tune with a catchy melody, driven by sparse piano comping, drum accentuations, and an alternation of walking bass lines and groovy bass motifs. 'Rest in Peace,' the final track and another Boone composition, departs from the prior tracks by incorporating synth, guitar, and percussion with the quartet (featuring Boone on electric bass) for a funk and R&B inspired finale.
Boone's playing is excellent, always dynamic, striking a balance between melodic and harmonic duties. As he demonstrates through two duets, jazz trio and quartet settings, and electric instrumentation, Mike Boone can do it all."
- All About Jazz
"...a straight-ahead jazz fest with some impressive twists. Among those is a cooking duet with pianist Uri Caine...a handsome duet with trumpeter John Swana on 'Up Jumped Swing' and there's...some nice moments, including the wacked-out oompah intro to 'Stella by Starlight.'"
- Philadelphia Inquirer
"...consistently retains the interest of the listener...'Stella by Starlight' is the most interesting, bounding with joy, and sandwiched at beginning and end by Jason Shattil's pianistic circus romps in 3/4 time...this CD presents a worthwhile listening experience and is clearly the result of much planning and effort." - Cadence
"Old Head features Boone in a variety of settings, soloing, prodding, arcoing, blazing, accompanying and leading...Straight out of the chute on track #1, Boone commands immediate attention...the sound of this album belongs to trumpeter Swana as well, contributing assurance and lyricism...pianist Uri Caine once again proves that he's one of the most vastly underappreciated pianists on today's jazz scene..." - Jazz News