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Caribbean Circle
Monty Alexander
Caribbean Circle
Genres: Jazz, Latin Music
  •  Track Listings (12) - Disc #1


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CD Details

All Artists: Monty Alexander
Title: Caribbean Circle
Members Wishing: 1
Total Copies: 0
Label: Chesky Records
Original Release Date: 8/26/1992
Re-Release Date: 9/5/1992
Genres: Jazz, Latin Music
Styles: Latin Jazz, Bebop
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPC: 090368008022

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CD Reviews

Monty's recipe for reggae jazz, by the ingredients
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Jamaican native Monty Alexander has established a solid reputation as a straight jazz pianist through his work with Milt Jackson and his 'Triple Treat' encounters with Ray Brown and Herb Ellis. Occasionally, though, Alexander records an album that combines jazz with his island roots, such as the recent 'Yard Movement' and 'Stir It Up' records (both of which are fantastic). For 'Caribbean Circle' he makes a more conscious effort to educate his listeners as to how these influences came together in his music.The record is roughly divided into three parts, each of which represents a childhood influence of Alexander's. Each part starts with a spoken introductory monologue by Alexander himself, in a heavy Jamaican accent that one will find either charming (like I do) or annoying. The influences are the Caribbean tradewinds, American cowboy flicks, and Louis Armstrong. Why? It's all explained in his monologues. For most of the tracks, Alexander employs a four-horn arrangement, percussion and steel drums to go along with his base trio. The record has an almost live feel to it, thanks to `minimalist miking techniques' and no overdubbing. It accentuates the percussion particularly well. Alexander contributes another strong set of original compositions, most notably the title song and `Oh Why'. His covers are also well done, like Bob Marley's `Three Little Birds', a medley of cowboy tunes, and a very lively version of `Sweet Georgia Brown'. `When the Saints Go Marching In' is highlighted by some outstanding trumpet playing by E. Dankworth. Alexander himself plays fine but less conspicuously as he normally does, probably so as not to get in the way of the horn section. It seems to be a good move.All in all, a very listenable and enjoyable cd, full of variety and pleasant surprises. Maybe not his most focused effort, but definitely worth spending the money for."