Daily jazz blog, Marlbank

Simon Lasky Group, For the Dreamers, Ubuntu ***1/2

For The Dreamers features British pianist composer Simon Lasky’s US octet in a recording that also includes the guest presence of top British saxophonists Tim Garland and Paul Booth. Lasky says: ''Despite the challenging circumstances of its …

Published: 8 Feb 2024. Updated: 4 months.

For The Dreamers features British pianist composer Simon Lasky’s US octet in a recording that also includes the guest presence of top British saxophonists Tim Garland and Paul Booth. Lasky says: ''Despite the challenging circumstances of its inception, the music on this record is unfailingly optimistic. It explores notions of heroism, flight, fancy and dreaming. And it's the 'American' record I always dreamed I would make”. A jazz-rock record in many respects it reminds us of 1980s and 90s fusion. It is also notable in that the record is the first time Lasky has recorded with a full horn section and vocals - Ona K is the singer here. The band has players drawn from the Tampa Bay jazz scene where Lasky now lives. Covers include 'Bye Bye Blackbird' and Joe Sample/Will Jennings classic 'Someday I'll Fly Away' synonymous with Randy Crawford's 1980 version (the latter here the best of the vocals). The pick for us overall is when the album goes into driving mode most, for instance on the horn soaked track 'The Outsiders'. And there is also a great keyboards element from Lasky on 'Tampa Strut.' Simon Lasky, photo: Jayne Drooger

Out on 22 March - listen to and watch a live performance version of album track the tender Lasky piece 'Every Day Hero,' above.

Tags: Reviews

Ezra Collective win another jazz act MOBO

Following their win at the 2022 MOBOs Ezra Collective added yet another award to their burgeoning trophy cabinet following their Mercury prize win in the autumn by winning for best jazz act in Sheffield at this year's MOBOs held last night although …

Published: 8 Feb 2024. Updated: 4 months.

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Following their win at the 2022 MOBOs Ezra Collective added yet another award to their burgeoning trophy cabinet following their Mercury prize win in the autumn by winning for best jazz act in Sheffield at this year's MOBOs held last night although they lost out in the best album category. The full jazz act nominees list was: Blue Lab Beats, CKTRL, Ezra Collective, Masego, Reuben James and Yazmin Lacey. In the album category, Potter Payper won for Real Back in Style.