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Album Review

Donald Brown is a phenomenal composer in his own right, but he primarily concentrates on overlooked gems during these 1998 sessions. He's joined by alto saxophonist Bill Easley (who doubles on clarinet and flute), trumpeter and flügelhornist Stephane Belmondo, vibraphonist Steve Nelson, bassist Essiet Essiet, and drummer Billy Higgins. Brown's imaginative scoring of Billy Strayhorn's gorgeous ballad "Day Dream" showcases Nelson's sparse vibes and Easley's lyrical clarinet. Thad Jones' "Quiet Lady," one of many treasures that awaits discovery by the jazz world, is an easygoing waltz with crisp brushwork by Higgins. Duke Pearson, another neglected composer, is represented with a driving rendition of "Big Bertha," a piece that could easily have been a part of Brown's repertoire while he was music director for Art Blakey. Easley's haunting flute is backed solely by Brown's thoughtful piano in a brilliant arrangement of Billie Holiday's "Don't Explain," which also spotlights Belmondo's rich flügelhorn. The one standard of the date is a snappy cover of "Like Someone in Love." Donald Brown also contributed three originals, with the upbeat "Enchanté!" especially standing out. Fans of this veteran pianist should snap up this French CD without hesitation.


Born: 28 March 1954 in Hernando, MS

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s

A fine pianist and educator, Donald Brown has also been a prolific composer. He grew up in Memphis and actually started out on drums and trumpet. By the time he attended Memphis State University (1972-1975), he was playing jazz piano. After years of local work, Brown replaced James Williams with the Jazz Messengers (1981-1982). He went on to teach at Berklee (1983-1985) and the University of Tennessee (starting in 1988), recorded albums...
Full bio
Enchanté!, Donald Brown
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  • 9,99 €
  • Genres: Jazz, Music, Hard Bop
  • Released: 20 April 1999

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