RELEASE
December 01, 2003
LABEL
Torii Records
GENRES
Jazz, Hard Bop, Post-Bop, Piano Jazz, Jazz Instrument

Album Review

It's About Love, an acoustic post-bop date that pianist Bill Cunliffe co-leads with saxman Gary Foster, is subtitled The Music of Reed Kotler. Upon seeing that name, some listeners are bound to ask, "Who is Reed Kotler?" -- and the answer is that Kotler is a talented but underexposed jazz composer from the San Francisco Bay Area. Although Kotler isn't well known, Cunliffe and Foster obviously think highly of his work; It's About Love marks the second time the improvisers have devoted an entire album to his compositions. They have good taste; Kotler often writes attractive melodies, and it's nice to see some jazzmen acknowledging a lesser known composer instead of confining themselves to overdone Tin Pan Alley standards that have long since been beaten to death. (Does the jazz world really need 5,000 new recordings of "My Funny Valentine" in the 21st century?) As it turns out, Kotler's melodies are perfect for what Cunliffe and Foster wanted It's About Love to be: an often romantic, generally laid-back and relaxed post-bop album. This 2003 date doesn't focus on ballads exclusively, but it does make lyrical performances a high priority -- more often than not, It's About Love celebrates the kinder, gentler side of post-bop. Think of John Coltrane playing "Naima" and "Central Park West," Herbie Hancock doing "Dolphin Dance," or James Williams giving us "Alter Ego"; that's the sort of good-natured vibe that frequently prevails on this CD, which was produced by Cunliffe and Kotler and lists the latter as executive producer. Cunliffe and Foster are joined by bassist Jeff d'Angelo and drummer Tim Pleasant, both of whom do their part to make It's About Love the solid effort that it is.
Alex Henderson, Rovi

Track Listing

  1. At the End of the Dayhttp://itunes.apple.com/album/at-the-end-of-the-day/id215825787?i=215825791&uo=5&at=11l9vR
  2. I've Been Thinking of You Latelyhttp://itunes.apple.com/album/ive-been-thinking-you-lately/id215825787?i=215825800&uo=5&at=11l9vR
  3. Where Do I Go from Here?http://itunes.apple.com/album/where-do-i-go-from-here/id215825787?i=215825848&uo=5&at=11l9vR
  4. Nine Stepshttp://itunes.apple.com/album/nine-steps/id215825787?i=215826085&uo=5&at=11l9vR
  5. I Can't Forgethttp://itunes.apple.com/album/i-cant-forget/id215825787?i=215826122&uo=5&at=11l9vR
  6. Spring Is Nearhttp://itunes.apple.com/album/spring-is-near/id215825787?i=215826172&uo=5&at=11l9vR
  7. Thank You Lord, Amen!http://itunes.apple.com/album/thank-you-lord-amen/id215825787?i=215826216&uo=5&at=11l9vR
  8. Song for Bill C.http://itunes.apple.com/album/song-for-bill-c/id215825787?i=215826245&uo=5&at=11l9vR
  9. Cool Walkhttp://itunes.apple.com/album/cool-walk/id215825787?i=215826256&uo=5&at=11l9vR
  10. Love Is in the Airhttp://itunes.apple.com/album/love-is-in-the-air/id215825787?i=215826258&uo=5&at=11l9vR
  11. Thoughts of Youhttp://itunes.apple.com/album/thoughts-of-you/id215825787?i=215826317&uo=5&at=11l9vR
  12. Duck's Tunehttp://itunes.apple.com/album/ducks-tune/id215825787?i=215826358&uo=5&at=11l9vR
  13. Foreverhttp://itunes.apple.com/album/forever/id215825787?i=215826367&uo=5&at=11l9vR
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