Antonio Ciacca: Prince of Newark


Prince of Newark


Antonio Ciacca (piano)


Rush Life (Motema MTM-00015)

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Antonio Ciacca (piano),

Joe Magnarelli (trumpet), Stacy Dillard (tenor sax), Kengo Nakamura (bass), Rodney Green (drums)


Composed by Antonio Ciacca


Recorded: New York, January 2008


Rating: 89/100 (learn more)

When you are the Director of Programming at Jazz at Lincoln Center, you better be good! Antonio Ciacca spent years touring and playing with the likes of Art Farmer, Dave Liebman, Mark Murphy, Steve Grossman, Wynton Marsalis and others proving just that. Surprisingly, given all his international experience and new professional position, Ciacca here offers his very first U.S. CD release, comprising a cross selection of finely crafted standards and originals.

"Prince of Newark" is a tribute to Wayne Shorter, who greatly influenced Ciacca. The piece begins with saxophonist Dillard and trumpeter Magnarelli playing a unison intro. Once the rhythm section enters, the piece becomes a relaxed, straight-ahead excursion full of harmony and space. Ciacca's piano plays a minor part until his solo. Even then it is clear that Ciacca's focus is on the arrangement and ensemble, not the individual player. He makes no effort to overwhelm. Dillard and then Magnarelli approach their turns in the same manner. This piece is about Shorter's way. Mood and structure are the masters.

Good thing that Ciacca and his band are good. It would be real embarrassing if they were not.

Reviewer: Walter Kolosky

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