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What's New on WDCB... with Paul Abella

April 19th, 2021

Vincent Herring – Preaching to the Choir (Smoke Sessions)

Vincent Herring is back with a new album for Smoke Sessions Records, and it's a swinger. Of course, with a band like Cyrus Chestnut (piano), Yasushi Nakamura (bass), and Johnathan Blake (drums) backing him up, that's no surprise. Preaching to the Choir features a varied program, with standards like "Old Devil Moon," Jazz classics like "Fried Pies," and a pair of 80's tunes – Lionel Richie's "Hello," which has legs as a Jazz ballad, and Stevie Wonder's "You Are the Sunshine of My Life," which works exceedingly well with a Bossa Nova groove. Herring contributes a couple of tunes himself, and the whole album really works.

Nelson Riveros – The Latin Side of Wes Montgomery (Zoho)

New York based guitarist Nelson Riveros isn't a household name, but if he keeps putting out records like The Latin Side of Wes Montgomery, that's going to change. Joined by pianist Hector Martignon, bassist Andy McKee, percussionist Jonathan Gomez and drummer (and former Chicagoan!) Mark Walker, this band cooks. Sticking mostly to Wes Montgomery's tunes means that we already know most of the compositions..."Road Song," "Four on Six," and "West Coast Blues" are familiar to most any Jazz fan. And hearing them in this new context really makes them pop. This album grooves hard, and I hope you enjoy it as much as I have!

Tivon Pennicott – Spirit Garden (New Phrase Records)

Tivon Pennicott has a name that you might not recognize, but you'll definitely recognize his playing. As the long-time saxophonist with Gregory Porter, his solos on Porter's most enduring tunes, like "On My Way to Harlem" or "1960 What?" have been heard many times on WDCB. With his second album, Spirit Garden, he steps into the spotlight with a really interesting "with strings" record that sometimes lulls, sometimes excites and almost always intrigues. My favorites include "Celery Juice" and "Bad Apple," and I am sure that some of the other WDCB show hosts will find favorites of their own, too.