New Beginnings

New Beginnings

by Terell Stafford
     
 

Trumpeter Terrell Stafford has paid his dues, and you can hear it. A featured horn with the bands of Bobby Watson and Victor Lewis, among others, Stafford learned his lessons on how to structure a band and a recording, and he now applies them to his own impressive projects. New Beginnings, the talented horn man’s fourth album, finds Stafford collaborating withSee more details below

Overview

Trumpeter Terrell Stafford has paid his dues, and you can hear it. A featured horn with the bands of Bobby Watson and Victor Lewis, among others, Stafford learned his lessons on how to structure a band and a recording, and he now applies them to his own impressive projects. New Beginnings, the talented horn man’s fourth album, finds Stafford collaborating with other exceptional players, including pianist Mulgrew Miller and saxophonists Steve Wilson and Dick Oatts (the rhythm team of bassist Derrick Hodge and drummer Dana Hall, both up-and-comers, also deserves special praise). On trumpet and flugelhorn alike, Stafford displays a beautiful tone and a fluidity that allows him to execute every gorgeous passage he devises with elegance and, when called for, sheer muscle. Although his own three-part “New Beginnings Suite” exhibits Stafford’s fine compositional powers, the album also touches on such recognizable material as “Blame It on My Youth,” “The Touch of Your Lips,” “I Don’t Wanna Be Kissed,” and “Soft Winds,” perennials that showcase the leader’s ability to inject the new into the familiar.

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - David Jeffries
Named after a suite composed for the Dayton, OH, arts organization Cityfolk, New Beginnings buckles under the weight of its diverse choice of material, just holding together due to the musicians' expertise. Terell Stafford bounces between trumpet and flügelhorn, the choice of material ranges from standards to funk, and there must have been a rotating door for the four saxophonists. Luckily, our leader is a "musician's musician," so if listeners consider it a chance to sit in on Stafford's class at Temple, they'll be rewarded. Stafford steps up slowly to Fletcher Henderson's "Soft Winds" before having some fun, assuredly stretching notes before handing it over to Jesse Davis and Harry Allen's more relaxed and soulful approaches. It's a great opener, with solos being bounced back and forth to introduce the players quickly. Mulgrew Miller is in fine form throughout the record, placing his solo between the beats on "I Don't Wanna Be Kissed" and providing ample support for the leads elsewhere. Derrick Hodge's acoustic bass is spot-on, but less compelling when he switches to electric for the anemic funk of "Selah," the "New Beginnings Suite" opener. The three-song suite could be taken apart without anyone noticing, but its structure does allow the sideman ample room to explore on an already sideman-friendly record. Stafford slinks across Stephen Scott's wonderful arrangement of "Kumbaya" and Steve Wilson's brilliant soprano pushes the whole band toward a rapturous ending. It's definitely the album's winner, and as a closer it leaves the listener exalted.

Product Details

Release Date:
06/17/2003
Label:
Max Jazz Records
UPC:
0610614040226
catalogNumber:
140402
Rank:
128690

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