Release Date: 07/14/14
On Big Boss, their third offering and debut ZOHO CD release, Charlie Apicella & Iron City renew the traditional organ group sound. Rife with swing, up-tempos and ballads, each song has its own story and groove. Of the eight tunes, four are penned by Apicella, the other four are covers of Grant Green, Willie Dixon and not-oft-instrumentally-heard MoTown classic by Holland-Dozier-Holland. I conducted an interview with Charlie Apicella and found that he, along with Alan Korzin, drummer and co-producer on this date, has assembled a CD of love; love of classic jazz and blues and love for the musicians who the pair credits as influences. For Apicella they range from Lester Young to Gene Ammons and Miles Davis; with Grant Green, Wes Montgomery, Barry Galbraith, Dave Stryker, Yuseef Lateef and even Frank Sinatra his top influences. He says, âI have a deep love of the Count Basie big band and have based almost my entire chord style on Freddie Greenâs.â According to Korzin, âmost of the classic recordings we love feature a core rhythm section supporting the leader of the date. For organ music it was the Don Patterson/Billy James unit, âBigâ John Patton/Ben Dixon, and Larry Young/Elvin Jones. We also love the more well-known piano-based rhythm sections.â Sheila Anderson: How did you come to name the band Iron City' Was it a nod to Pittsburgh' Charlie Apicella: it is not a reference to any specific place but more the imagery that I am seeking. My music has a strong foundation and is built on a solid structure of grooves, like a buildingâs beams made out of steel and iron.â SA: What is your connection with Yusef Lateef' CA: Before moving to New York City, I lived in Western Massachusetts while Yusef Lateef was a professor at UMASS. I had the good fortune to get private lessons with him where I brought in my original tunes. He taught me how to take the craft of composition seriously, that it is as much a part of one's work as a competent and engaging solo.â SA: Describe your guitar playing. CA: I take great pride in my guitar tone and I strive for a direct, thoughtful approach to improvisation. From the masters I have learned that a solo isn't only about the individual, it must also enhance the groove, progress from beginning to end and tell a story. I try to play with clarity and lay down some listenable, digestible, soulful ideas. I can learn something from any solo I hear. The important thing with most of these masters is that they are great composers as well as improvisers. SA: What is your approach to writing' All of your songs on this CD are distinct. I especially love your beautiful ballad âAmalfi.â CA: I often compose from the ground up, with a feel or rhythm pattern as my first influence. For this record, having two horns to work with was a new frontier for my writing. I am blessed to have a front line complemented with two of the most distinctive voices on the scene in Freddie Hendrix, trumpet, and Stephen Riley, tenor saxophone. Sheila Elaine Anderson, author, on-air-host, WBGO, 88.3FM <br><br>TRACK LISTING: <br>1 I Hear A Symphony <br>2 Idris <br>3 In The Grass <br>4 Big Boss <br>5 Spoonful <br>6 Amalfi <br>7 The Selma March <br>8 Sunday Mornin' <br>
|Label: Zoho Music|
|Run Time: 53 mins|
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