Kenny Barron is a jazz pianist whose inspired and elegant playing is only surpassed by his output.
Still active today, he has released close to 50 albums and has recorded with Sonny Fortune, Ron Carter, John Stubblefield, Bobby Hutcherson, Ella Fitzgerald, Stan Getz, Dizzy Gillespie, Roy Hanes, Yusef Lateef and the late Idris Muhammad, yet he is far from a household name. His style fluctuates between modal and spiritual jazz with a latin influence and that to me is an unbeatable combination.
The more medidative side of spiritual jazz is at the forefront of his sophomore album aptly titled From Sunset to Dawn which coincidentaly is his debut on Muse Records. Muse was known for artistic freedom and pursuing John Coltrane’s omnipresent legacy, I am glad they allowed Barron to fully express himself and probably convinced him to become a full-fledged solo artist. The opening track Sunset eases the listener into the album and displays the vibes and electric piano that will appear throughout the album. Light latin percussion adds to the transcendal experience.
The fiery Swamp Demon features Brazilian percussion and is the most out there of the grooves. My favorite song is the luscious Delores St. which became a Barron staple and shows the extent of his piano skills before jumping into a hypnotic arrangement that captivates the listener for all 9 minutes.
Sunset to Dawn is a gorgeous sunday morning jazz record that will make you discover an unerappreciated artist and label.
Bass – Bob Cranshaw
Drums – Freddie Waits
Engineer – Paul Goodman
Keyboards – Kenny Barron
Mastered By – Joe Brescio
Percussion – Richard Landrum, Warren Smith
Producer – Don Schlitten