Personnel: Stephen Scott (piano, keyboards); Ron Carter (bass); Victor Lewis (drums); Steve Kroon (percussion).
Recorded at Systems Two Studios, Brooklyn, New York on March 4, 1998. Includes liner notes by Stephen Scott.
Personnel: Stephen Scott (piano, keyboards); Victor Lewis (drums); Steve Kroon (percussion).
Recording information: Systems Two Studios, Brooklyn, NY (03/04/1998).
Photographer: John Abbott .
Teaming with formidable rhythm mates as bassist Ron Carter and drummer Victor Lewis should inspire any jazz pianist to do their level best. Pianist Scott fares very well with them throughout, as does percussionist Steve Kroon for six of the 11 selections. Scott's value is in economy, rarely going into histrionics or simple-minded LCD tunes; he strikes a balance in the middle. Most of the material, seven tunes of 11, are of his making. After the beginning salvo "Like a Child at Play," with its neat and clean beginners' melody grafted onto Carter's ostinato bass and Kroon's disparate congas, the program is broken up into segments for each ensemble. The trio without Kroon tackles a modified intro and standard, well-swung reading of "Cheek to Cheek" complete with Carter's patented walking quarter note solo; the processional piano-bassline of the title track buoys a virile workout by Lewis; and there are the slightly bossa version of Wayne Shorer's "Virgo" and updated bluesy swing take of "'Round Midnight." Kroon returns for the next five; the swing to Afro-Cuban mambo inflections of the pop tune "Where Is the Love?," the free-form attitude but settled 4/4 time of "Abstract Realities," and the descarga/ostinato bass-derived "Work in Progress" are as spirited and real as you need them to be. Scott also utilizes electric piano for the rambling "Yum" with acoustic in the mid-section, and the reggae flavored "Da'at," based on a Hebrew precept. The closer "Live & Learn," cleverly shifting from 2/4 to 3/4, sans Kroon, is annoyingly faded out after only a few minutes. Nevertheless, Scott grows and progesses in degrees of both subtlety and creativity with every recording. This shows he's on his way to becoming a top ten player. Recommended. ~ Michael G. Nastos