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Phil Madeira: Crickets

by Debra C. Argen
Phil Madeira - Crickets
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The Phil Madeira: Crickets album is one of the best instrumental Jazz piano releases that I have come across in quite a while. Featuring the multi-talented award-winning musician, songwriter, and producer Phil Madeira on piano, Bahsaan Barberon saxophones, Aaron Smith on drums, Roland Barber on trombone and trumpet, James Hollihan on electric guitar, and Chris Donohue on upright bass, the Phil Madeira: Crickets album is one for Jazz collectors’ collections.



Phil Madeira: Crickets

Phil Madeira: Crickets: Sirkka’s Dream, Cut It Out, Cricket, Teamwork Salad, Rollin’ With Oti, Last Call At Bovi’s, Swingset, In Walked Willis, Jazz Hands, Coming Home

Personnel: Phil Madeira on piano, Bahsaan Barber on saxophones, Aaron Smith on drums, Roland Barber on trombone and trumpet (tracks 1, 5 and 10), James Hollihan on electric guitar (all tracks except 1 and 10), and Chris Donohue on upright bass

Phil Madeira: Crickets was produced by Phil Madeira and co-produced by Sirkka Svanoe Wood on the Mercyland Records label.

As a bit of a backstory, PhilMadeira is not only a multi-award-winning talented musician, he is also anartist, songwriter, and a producer. His awards include Grammy® and Dove awards for his work as a songwriter, a Nashville Music Award for best keyboardist, and an ASCAP award for humanitarian work. Born in Rhode Island, and now based in Nashville, his storied musical resume includes playingwith such top talents as Emmlylou Harris, Red Dirt Boys, Buddy Miller, The Phil Keaggy Band, Allison Krauss, Keb Mo’, Garth Brooks, Old Crow Medicine Show and many, many more. In summation, Phil Madeira is a big deal in his own right.

While Phil Madeira’s prior seven releases as a solo artist have been "lyrically oriented" the 10-track Crickets album, which hit the streets on April 26, 2019, is Phil Madeira’s first instrumental release, and it is stunning. Hailing back to the inspired Jazz of the 1950s and 1960s, Phil Madeira works his magic on the ivories, while Aaron Smith grooves on the drums, with some exceptional horns provided by Bahsaan Barber (saxophones) and Roland Barber (trumpet and trombone), with James Hollihan on electric guitar and Chris Donahue rounding out the talent on this impressive album.

The release features all original music composed by Phil Madeira for a quintet and opens with the track Sirkka’s Dream, with Aaron Smith laying down a killer drum roll that sets the musical stage for Phil Madeira’s sparkling piano rhythms on this slow and sultry piece.

The playlist continues with the track Cut It Out, written by Phil Madeira and Sirkka Svanoe Wood,which flows effortlessly with its punchy, wailing sax by Bahsaan Barber and electric guitar riffs by James Hollihan. Cricket is another sensational cut off the release with Phil Madeira laying down some memorable piano work, with Bahsaan Barber contributing outstanding saxophone solos.

Next up is the track, Teamwork Salad, which cooks so fine and is wholly satisfying with the band contributing to make this a standout on the release. Phil and the band segueinto the track Rollin’ With Oti, with Roland Barber layering in the trombone and trumpet to give the song its kick. Last Call At Bovi’s follows.

Swingset, is a lively Swing Jazz number followed by In Walked Willis with its musical piano swagger. The band keeps the lively instrumentals flowing on Jazz Hands. The album culminates with the track Coming Home with Roland Barber once again contributing trombone and trumpet that delivers the powerful goods on a from start-to-finish all around wonderful album. Phil Madeira: Crickets is definitely one to add to your Jazz collection and worth giving this album several listens.

Until next time, keep enjoying the music!

For information on Phil Madeira, please visit the website: www.philmadeira.net

Websites where you can procure Phil Madeira: Crickets: Phil Madeira Shop,and Amazon.

Follow Phil Madeira on Facebook at www.facebook.com/PhilMadeira

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