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Sheppard, Bob: The Fine Line

Session man extraordinaire Bob Sheppard has been plying his trade for decades working with some fantastic musicians in the process including Chick Corea, Michael and Randy Brecker, Herbie Hancock, Lyle Mays, Freddie Hubbard, Boz Scaggs, Joni Mitchell, Stevie Wonder…and the list goes on. He met Dutch bassist Jasper Somsen in 2013 and the two hit it off with Sheppard returning to The Netherlands a couple years later playing live, doing some radio and assorted workshops. Somsen then returned the favour, flying to L.A. and playing on Sheppard’s latest disc titled The Fine Line.

This is contemporary jazz with fabulous playing by every band member. The exceptional “Edge Of Trouble” begins the disc with slightly off kilter sax work and an in the pocket groove that holds it all together. Sheppard’s soprano sax is truly marvelous, bursting forth with creativity and energetic aplomb. The vibraphone work of Simon Moullier is also a nice touch. His work also graces “Maria’s Tango” and “Joegenic”, tastefully softening the soundscape. Somsen’s solo spot in the former is riveting. The fast paced “Above & Beyond” absolutely sizzles and the piano solo is a real treat. Trust me, there are many more highlights to be found.

The Fine Line is an album chalk full of some of the tastiest playing I have heard this year. I urge you to check it out. A Challenge Records release.

The band includes:
Bob Sheppard (saxophones, flute, alto flute)
John Beasley (piano)
Jasper Somsen (double bass ��" all tracks except 2 and 4)
Kendrick Scott (drums)

Guest musicians:
Mike Cottone (trumpet ��" track 2)
Simon Moullier (vibraphone ��" tracks 1, 6 and 8)
Maria Puga Lareo (vocals ��" track 3)
Benjamin Shepherd (electric bass ��" tracks 2 and 4)
Aaron Safarty (shaker ��" tracks 3 and 6)

Track Listing:
1. Edge Of Trouble (4:46)
2. Run Amok (5:52)
3. The Fine Line (4:11)
4. People Make The World Go ‘Round (5:08)
5. I Didn’t Know What Time It Was (7:20)
6. Maria’s Tango (5:36)
7. Above & Beyond (5:38)
8. Joegenic (4:54)
9. Thanks For The Memory (4:24)
10. A Flower Is A Lovesome Thing (7:02)

Added: September 5th 2019
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Related Link: Artist's Official Site
Hits: 638
Language: english

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