Manhattan Bones | Tribute

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Jazz: Bebop Jazz: Big Band Moods: Type: Improvisational
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by Manhattan Bones

Four top NYC trombonists & a three-piece rhythm section pay tribute to J.J. Johnson, Bob Brookmeyer, Clark Terry, Duke Ellington & Gil Evans in a cutting-edge set of jazz arrangements by leader Scott Reeves.
Genre: Jazz: Bebop
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Shutter-bug
6:53 $0.99
2. Pavane
7:13 $0.99
3. Waltz from Shape Shifter
9:51 $0.99
4. Gone
6:37 $0.99
5. Where Flamingos Fly
5:14 $0.99
6. Caravan
9:24 $0.99
7. Congressional Roll Call
7:00 $0.99
8. Tom Thumb
6:57 $0.99
9. Hum
6:42 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Reviews of Manhattan Bones "Tribute"

“spotlighting the trombone’s timbral versatility and emotional transmission - not to mention its sheer gorgeousness of tone...Manhattan Bones provides the listener with the too infrequent treat of hearing some exceptional lower brass performances...” - Jazz Improv Magazine (winter, 2007)

"Reeves has woven a fine tapestry and the performance displays charm and intricacy" - International Trombone Association Journal (fall, 2006, v. 38 #5)

"On my ‘Best of 2005’ list...dynamite..." - Herb Wong, IAJE Journal (spring, 2006)

"....the group achieves a majestic ensemble blend... the pianist's energizing solos are a highlight...." - Owen Cordle, Jazz Times, March, 2006 issue (

"It's truly a pleasure to be able to play "Tribute" by Manhattan Bones on my program. This CD is not only a "tribute" to the great jazz artists whose works are showcased on it, but also to the dedication and artistry of the musicians who make up this remarkable ensemble." - Bob Bernotas, author and host of "Just Jazz," WNTI, Hackettstown, NJ &

"Your rendition of Gil Evans 'Where Flamingos Fly' should be nominated for every possible "Best Arrangement and Performance' award in existence."
- Laurence Donohue-Greene, All About Jazz/NY

"The Tribute CD is slammin'! I've been playing it steadfastly and made it one of my memorable releases of '05." - Peter Poses, KCFR Colorado radio

"Tribute is a tour of trombone traditions and swinging modern ensemble playing....two adventurous highlights are the leader's originals. "Waltz for Shape Shifter" has a Reeves' alto valve trombone solo testifying over a haunting vamp, plus Ridl cascading and swirling in multimetric exchanges with trombone ensembles. "Congressional Roll Call" ...finds Sessions soloing with maximum slides and slurs and Reeves adding an incisive alto flugelhorn solo..." - George Kanzler, All About Jazz/NY, December 2005

"Intriguing writing, great ensemble work, and creative soloing make this CD a must for all jazz trombone fans." - trombonist John Fedchock

"Creative trombone writing, excellent ensemble playing and outstanding jazz solos by four of New York's best young trombonists. A real treat."
- trombonist Jack Gale

"I LOVE it, great trombone work....! - Rene Laanen, Danish jazz promoter (

"Four excellent trombonists salute brass instruments on this nine-cut exploration of some legendary works." - Dick Bogle, Dick's Picks from The Skanner, Nov. 2005

"Tribute" is literally an oasis for trombone aficionados. The long time devotion and respect to the big legacy of jazz and trombone are transformed in a generous tribute... a tendency that becomes more obvious when the group plays ensemble parts, often giving the impression of a much bigger ensemble.
- Greek bimonthly APOPSY (

Album Notes:
Manhattan Bones features the unusual instrumentation of 4 trombonists (doubling other brass instruments) and a 3-piece rhythm section. It began in 1989 as "Maine Bones" while Reeves was teaching at the University of Southern Maine. Upon his relocation to New York in 2000, the group was reformed as "Manhattan Bones." Their first recording, Tribute salutes the brass masters of the past - while looking towards the future with free form original compositions. The "tributes" include trombonist J.J. Johnson's composition, Shutter-bug, an unusual 20-bar blues in which the bones recreate J.J.'s masterful solo from his J.J. Inc. album. Caravan gives a nod to Ellington valve trombonist Juan Tizol, but this arrangement possesses a decidely contemporary sound through the use of hand percussion, Freddie Hubbard's "Blakeyesque" bridge and a pedal-point shout chorus. Trumpeter Clark Terry and valve trombonist Bob Brookmeyer are heralded in Brookmeyer's ingeniously motivic modal composition, Hum. Terry's buoyant time and exquisite bop lines from his solo on the Terry/Brookmeyer Quintet recording, Tonight, are rendered by the ensemble. (Incidentally, Clark Terry once performed this arrangement as a guest artist with the bones). Duke Ellington called Gil Evans his "favorite jazz orchestrator," a statement with which most jazz aficionados would agree. Evans' work is featured prominently on this CD, as evidenced by Gone, his recomposition of the Gershwin lament, Gone, Gone, Gone. While the interlude from Porgy and Bess serves as an introduction, this orchestration is modeled after Gil's subsequent versions, not the classic collaboration with Miles Davis. Evans is also profiled in Where Flamingos Fly - originally a vehicle for trombonist Jimmy Knepper. Evans described the song in an interview with Ben Sidren as "a field song...a man just leaned up against a fence in a field somewhere in Alabama and sang that melody." Evans' arrangement serves as a basis for this orchestration, which features Sessions' passionate and visceral statement of the melody, as well as Reeves' didgeridoo, an Australian aboriginal instrument. The two original compositions are both distillations of big band compositions Reeves wrote for the BMI Jazz Composers Orchestra. The melody of Shape Shifter is based on a 12-tone row "borrowed" from the Alberto Ginastera's first Piano Sonata, but the haunting vamp for the blowing is tonal, which gives way to multimeteric exchanges between the bones and pianist Ridl. Congressional Roll Call was previously recorded on Reeves' quintet date of the same name (Creative Jazz 1001) but is intensively reworked in this version. French composer Gabriel Faure's Pavane, a classical work transformed into a jazz vehicle, and Wayne Shorter's Tom Thumb, heard here in a 'boogaloo' treatment, round out the recording.

Manhattan Bones are:
Scott Reeves - alto flugelhorn, alto valve trombone, tenor trombone
Tim Sessions - tenor trombone
Mark Patterson - tenor trombone
Tim Newman - bass trombone
Jim Ridl - piano
Mike McGuirk - bass
Andy Watson - drums

Scott Reeves has been teaching at the collegiate level since 1976 and currently is a professor at the City College of New York and the Juilliard School of Music. He has played or recorded with the Dave Liebman Big Band, the Chico O'Farrill Afro-Cuban Jazz Orchestra, Clark Terry, Kenny Werner, James Williams, Ron Carter, John Patitucci, and the Anthony Braxton Orchestra. He is also the author of two widely acclaimed books on jazz improvisation, Creative Jazz Improvisation and Creative Beginnings, several arrangements for jazz ensemble, and scholarly articles (such as his research on Gil Evans). Scott chooses to play trombone only within the ensemble on this recording, relying on his alto brass - the alto flugelhorn (a rotary valve German brass band instrument) and the alto valve trombone (a restored antique instrument) - for all of his solos and some of the lead parts. Tim Sessions is a New Jersey resident, but was part of the original "Maine Bones" when he resided in New England. In addition to his tenure with the Dave Liebman Big Band, sub work with the Mingus Big Band and Village Vanguard Orchestra, Tim is currently in the pit of the long-running Broadway musical, The Producers. He can be heard on many jazz recordings, in company with artists such as Randy Brecker, Chris Potter and Kenny Werner. Mark Patterson is one of the most sought-after trombonists in New York. He plays and composes for the sextet, Convergence, with trumpeter Greg Gisbert, subs regularly with the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra, is a longtime member of the BMI Jazz Composers Workshop Orchestra and the New York Pops Orchestra, and has toured with the Maria Schneider Jazz Orchestra and Dave Matthews Manhattan Jazz Orchestra. Mark also plays in the pit orchestra for the Broadway show, 42nd Street. Bass trombonist Tim Newman appears frequently with the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra and was a regular member of the Toshiko Akiyoshi Jazz Orchestra for 10 years.  He has played with such diverse groups as Mario Bauza's Afro-Cuban Orchestra and They Might Be Giants.  Tim is currently on the jazz faculty at William Paterson University in New Jersey and is finishing his Ph.D. in composition at New York University. Pianist Jim Ridl has performed and recorded with a variety of artists such as Pat Martino, Dave Liebman and Denis DiBlasio. His work has been profiled in DownBeat, Jazz Times and Piano and Keyboard magazines. Jim continues to perform with Martino at major festivals in Japan, Europe and the U.S. Bassist Mike McGuirk recently moved to Brooklyn after graduating from the University of North Texas and his fluent style, reminiscent of the legendary Scott LaFaro, has made him one of the most sought-after bassists on the New York scene. He currently plays with artists such as John Abercrombie, Renee Rosnes and Mark Copland. Drummer Andy Watson has performed and recorded with an impressive list of artists, including Toshiko Akiyoshi, Bill Frisell, Benny Golson Jim Hall, Tom Harrell, Jon Hendricks, Woody Herman, Joe Lovano, Wynton Marsalis, Marian McPartland, James Moody, Mike Stern, and Lew Tabackin.

For Bookings Contact:
Scott Reeves
(201) 401-0810



to write a review

james dunn

manhattan bones
expertly arranged,excellently performed and if you are into thrombones this is the cd for you. cant wait for their follow up cd great.