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Sekine, Hiroe: One World One Sun

Really, the world of jazz is brimming with talent. Here is another name that has never crossed my listening desk until now. Her name is Hiroe Sekine, a Japanese pianist/composer now residing in California.

Her first two discs A-mé (2010) and After the Rainfall (2012) are loaded with wonderful players like Peter Erskine (ex-Weather Report), Bob Sheppard, John Daversa, Larry Koonse and many others. Her new disc One World One Sun continues that trend as bassist Michael Valerio and returning drummer Peter Erskine form the core of the band. However, that's not all. The premise behind the album is a mixture of different musical cultures, each song has a country attached defined by different players bringing their special talents to the table. Ethnic instruments like oud (Persian string instrument), reyong (type of gong chime), sitar, gendér (a metallophone), sanshin (Japanese instrument related to the banjo), zampõna (Andean pan flute) and steel drums can be heard all played with the expertise each musician brings.

The first piece "Nippon Barre" begins the disc in draw dropping fashion. The ensemble sizzles here, increasing and slowing the tempo at will and offering some exceptional solos. Rollicking piano is offset by nokan and dengakubue (both Japanese flutes) which add an Oriental flavour. It almost builds into a cacophony of sound but the best part is every musician knows exactly what and how to play making perfect sense of these musical build ups. Not surprisingly "Brillo del Sol" contains more than a hint of Spanish flair. The soprano sax, bass, drums and piano are all brilliantly played. This is another piece that will take some time to set in. The tropical inspired "Sunshine" has a bit more immediacy from a melodic perspective and features reggae styled rhythms and an overall lighter vibe. Wonderful sitar, tablas and a sprinkling of piano begin the exotic sounding "Soorya Kaa Prakaasha", this time India being the destination.

No matter which country you visit first, the rich and varied nature of this jazz music will shine through brightly. Another top notch production, this time courtesy of Sony Music Direct.

Track Listing:
1. Nippon Barre – Japan
2. Brillo del Sol – Spain
3. Sunshine – Caribbean
4. Soorya Kaa Prakaasha – India
5. Tidanu Hikari – Okinawa
6. La Greine (Ireland)
7. Sinar Matahari – Indonesia
8. Alshshams – Morocco
9. Pukana La – Hawaii
10. Soleado – Peru

Added: September 3rd 2017
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Related Link: Artist's Official Site
Hits: 1459
Language: english

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