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Dmitri Matheny

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Album Review

Dmitri Matheny, the head of the Monarch label, is an excellent flugelhornist. His style and sound are mellow, and his bop-based improvising is fairly melodic. For this date, he performs a variety of songs that have "moon" in their title. Matheny utilizes his regular group, a pianoless quintet with tenor saxophonist Dave Ellis (formerly with Charlie Hunter), guitarist John Heller, bassist Bill Douglass and drummer Kenny Wollesen. Produced by veteran Orrin Keepnews (for whom "Moon Rocks" was subtitled "Keepnew's Blues"), the emphasis is generally on slower tempos, although there is enough variation to keep one's interest. Matheny contributed three pieces, including the three-part "Moon Song Trinity," and there are also selections by Tom Harrell, Lee Morgan ("Desert Moonlight") and Neil Young, a traditional Chinese melody ("Autumn Moon"), and the standard "Moonlight In Vermont." An added touch is the inclusion of Rob Burger's accordion on the tango-influenced "Sea of Tranquility" (the first part of "Moon Song Trinity"). Matheny's light tone blends well throughout with Ellis' slightly heavier sound, and this sleeper is well worth investigating, both for the fine solos and the fresh material.


Born: 1966 in Nashville, TN

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '90s, '00s

Dmitri Matheny has had a dual career, as a soft-toned and tasteful flugelhornist who often emphasizes melodic ballads, and as an executive and talent scout for the Monarch label. Raised in Tucson, Arizona, Matheny was inspired to take up the trumpet when he was five after his father played him Miles Davis' Kind Of Blue. Although he was technically trained on the trumpet, Matheny preferred its mellower side and eventually switched exclusively to flugelhorn. He attended Interlochen Arts Academy and...
Full Bio
Penumbra, Dmitri Matheny
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  • $9.90
  • Genres: Jazz, Music, Hard Bop
  • Released: Jun 24, 1997

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