Showcasing the fine playing of JON GORDON (saxophone), DERRICK GARDNER (trumpet), STEVE KIRBY (bass), and QUINCY DAVIS (drums), Halcyon features many sounds both old and new: re-imagined works from the Great American Songbook and Monk as well as a healthy dose of original compositions. Each artist is allowed to bring his unique voice to the record, with trio, quartet, and quintet tracks throughout. From Quincy Davis’s refined brush work on “Reflections” to Jon Gordon’s soaring soprano playing on “Puddles,” this recording runs the gamut of emotions and soundscapes.
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Subtle Fire (2009)
The first moments of Subtle Fire, the debut album from Winnipeg pianist Will Bonness, are like doors swinging open, providing an entry point to some of the most appealing and artful trio playing out there right now. From fresh takes on standards like “Softly, as in a Morning Sunrise” and “It Never Entered My Mind” to compelling originals like “Walking on Water” and the title track, Subtle Fire is stylish, sophisticated, and emotionally charged.
Bonness has incredible facility, and it always serves his muse—he’s as convincing in a soulful ballad as he is at a blistering tempo. The rapport between Bonness and his bandmates, bassist Steve Kirby and drummer Terreon Gully, is uncanny, like three separate individuals expressing a single musical mind. Subtle Fire is both intimate and expansive. It’s also witty, powerful, and refined, without a trace of pretension.
Bonness is definitely a brilliant new star.
Bonness’ bandmates on Subtle Fire are bassist STEVE KIRBY and drummer TERREON GULLY, acclaimed jazz musicians who perform, record, and tour with some of the highest profile players in the business.
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Bonness, Will. Halcyon
Oceanic Jazz Orchestra. All Over the Map
Nowosad, Curtis. Dialectics
Epp, Amber. Inside/Outside
Fontaine, Vince. Indian City
Gillis, Richard. The Journey
Presslaff, Jeff. The Complete Rebirth of the Cool
Bonness, Will and Jeff Presslaff. Rhapsodies By Two
Nowosad, Curtis. Fairwell 274
Propp, Erin. Courage, My Love
Swickis, Mike. Songs I Wrote on the Plane
Watson, Neil. Move!
Kirby, Steve. Stepchild
Manitoba Chamber Orchestra. Glass: The Hours/Symphony No. 3
Nowosad, Curtis. The Skeptic and the Cynic
Bonness, Will. Subtle Fire
Kirby, Steve and Larry Roy. Wicked Grin
Winnipeg Jazz Orchestra. Steppin’ Out
Papa Mambo. Crooked Cha
Papa Mambo. Amanacer