David Arnay | 8

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United States - California - LA

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Jazz: Chamber Jazz Jazz: Contemporary Jazz Moods: Instrumental
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by David Arnay

A contemporary jazz album with a unique concept, progressing from solo piano through duo, trio, quartet, up to the closing octet. Featuring six original compositions and unique versions of two jazz classics.
Genre: Jazz: Chamber Jazz
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Caravan
2:39 $0.99
2. 11/12/11 (feat. Edwin Livingston)
4:02 $0.99
3. Billville (feat. Peter Erskine)
6:47 $0.99
4. Step Four (feat. Doug Webb)
4:17 $0.99
5. Old Man Says (feat. Munyungo Jackson)
4:41 $0.99
6. Giant Steps
4:30 $0.99
7. Six of One
6:39 $0.99
8. Dream Groove
4:07 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
L.A. pianist and composer David Arnay presents a jazz concept album...
"8" opens with a solo piano piece, then adds an instrument on each track, up to the closing octet. Each track stands alone, but listening to the entire program (c. 38 minutes) creates a true journey for the listener. As a pianist Arnay follows Keith Jarrett, Herbie Hancock, and Bill Evans... rooted in the mainstream, while the music and arrangements are colored with eclectic influences including Fela Kuti and Weather Report.
The cast, in order of appearance:
David Arnay - piano/kbds.
Edwin Livingston - acoustic and electric bass
Peter Erskine - drums
Doug Webb - woodwinds
Munyungo Jackson - percussion
Paco Loco - guitar
Dan Fornero - trumpet
Vikram Devasthali - trombone



to write a review

Monte Montgomery

Another Tasty Dish from a Grooving Daddy
I'm old enough to remember the plate-spinning acts on the Sullivan show, where to the strains of Khachaturian's "Sabre Dance" an increasingly frantic performer balanced revolving dish after revolving dish atop wobbling rods, then took a bow when they were all – miraculously – spinning happily.

I was reminded of this felicitous talent by David Arnay's new "concept album," "Eight." That concept – starting out with a solo piano track, then augmenting the band by one additional instrument with each subsequent tune until his talented ensemble maxes out as an octet on the finale – is a novel way of showcasing the pianist's skill not just as a player and writer, but arranger.

To further torture my dishware metaphor, listening as the record gains momentum and complexity is a little like filling up a plate at a tasty buffet: if it's done correctly, each dish complements both the one before it and the one after. And instead of ending up with a gravy-soaked mishmosh, the thematic consistency of Arnay's writing guarantees that "things get mixed up, and the juice kind of swaps around, and the things go better," as Huck Finn so memorably put it.

Arnay has clearly grown considerably as an artist since "Daddy's Groove," but the tunes still cook with the same funk-, blues-, and Latin-inspired rhythms that infused that earlier effort. Particular standouts are his solo interpretation of Tizol's and Ellington's "Caravan," and his modal-reggae-space-fest on "Giant Steps." Trippy, man. My favorite cut, "Billville," is a swinging tribute to Evans, who probably had the deftest hand with a waltz since Strauss. Somewhere in jazz heaven, Bill is all smiles.

Edwin Livingston, on bass, is unfailingly solid and inventive, and crisp brush- and cymbalwork by ace sessioner Peter Erskine, unsurprisingly, propels each tune along with verve and polish.

All in all, quite a tour de force -- and I can happily report that Arnay doesn't break a single plate. Think he can handle nine?