Thursday, 08 October 2009 13:35

Henry Brun's new CD: 'Tribute to Duke Ellington'

Percussionist Henry Brun puts the spotlight on one of his music heroes, brilliant performer Duke Ellington, on his latest CD, “Rhythms and Reeds…A Tribute to the Master Duke Ellington,” just released on Pulsar Records. Brun also plays Witte - see below. CD review:

Jazz master Duke Ellington is remembered in

this 14-track CD by percussionist Henry Brun. Special guests includes influential players such as Justo Almario, Spot Barnett, John Mills, Philippe Vieux, George Prado, Gabe Pintor and Judi Deleon. All the tracks were arranged by Brun, Travis Davis, or Rafael Petiton. Brun considers Ellington one of his most fundamental influences, “a man whose body of work guided you through your ABC’s in jazz.” The tracks are easy-going, free-flowing reflective pieces. While Brun remains true to the Duke’s original versions, he gives the tunes an interesting reading. And thanks perhaps to his percussions, gives them a slight Latino tinge. Stand out tracks include the piano-led “C Jam Blues”, the snappy “In A mellow Tone,” the robust classic “It Don’t Mean A Thing If Ain’t Got That Swing,” and the exquisitely haunting “Fleurette Africaine (African Flower).” These tunes are ideal for listening in low-lit clubs, backyard patios with a setting sun, or other places where one can bask in solitude and reflection. The musicianship is impeccable, the fidelity sonically beautiful. No surprise, given the A-list roster of studio players including director Adrian Ruiz, lead trumpeter Ed Sherry, drummer Mike Koenning, double bassist Billy Satterwhite and percussionist Rene Gonzalez. A keeper for lovers of classic Jazz.
***1 /2
--Ramiro Burr

Brun is also showcasing his new CD at the Witte Museum at 4 p.m. Sunday Oct. 11 with his group, the Latin Playerz. Guests include Dr. John Mills and Philippe Vieux. Free for Witte members; otherwise museum admission. Call The Witte Museum at (210) 357-1900

MORE: Henry Brun: That's where his calling is

Coming up: Henry Brun interview on Ellington 'deep, subtle and enrapturing'