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Last Call Review: Steve Gadd Band/ 70 Strong/BFM Jazz - KIOS

Last Call celebrates the 70th Birthday of one of the drum legends of our time, Steve Gadd.

To say he has been an in-demand drummer would be an understatement. Gadd is arguably THE man to call when drums are required--as his credits indicate: He was the drummer for Paul Simon's "50 Ways To Leave Your Lover", Steely Dan's "Aja", Al Jarreau's "Spain", and Chick Corea's "Nite Sprite". Chick Corea has described Gadd as "The Master of Creative Grooves." Steve Gadd has toured with artists such as Eric Clapton to James Taylor and is known for his essential contribution to Grover Washington, Jr's/ Bill Wither's megahit "Just The Two Of Us".

Born April 9, 1945, Steve Gadd has just released   70 Strong, an excellent album and the second recording by the Steve Gadd Band. Their inaugural 9-song debut, Gadditdue, was released in 2013 and wasa  brilliant combination of groove and grace. The Steve Gadd Band is Walt Fowler, trumpet and flugelhorn; Larry Goldings, keyboard, accordion; Jimmy Johnson, bass;  Michael Landau, guitars and Steve Gadd, drums.

Eleven tracks are presented on the current recording. "Foam Home" starts the date with a funky 70's inspired groove delivered to perfection. There's a very pleasing rendition of "Freedom Jazz Dance" that follows.  Other highlights include Walt Fowler's "Duke's Anthem" which is a soulful gospel tinged anthem, and a very engaging Larry Goldings number "Elegant Squares". All in all this is a richly satisfying session from one of the most important drummers of our times.

Chris Cooke


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