CD Standard Wonder: The Music of Stevie Wonder (CD 893300),
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Standard Wonder: The Music of Stevie Wonder

  • 1. Too High
    2. All in Love Is Fair
    3. Smile Please
    4. Go Home
    5. You and I-Interlude
    6. Secret Life of Plants, The
    7. Contusion
    8. Happier Than the Morning Su
    9. Visions
    10. Another Star
    11. Overjoyed
    12. Come Back as a Flower
  • Additional Info
    Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 73212

  • Credits
    ProducerDave Pietro
    EngineerMichael Marciano

    Personnel: Dave Pietro (soprano, alto & C-melody saxophones); Scott Wendholt (trumpet, flugelhorn); Pete McGuiness (trombone); David Berkman (piano, Fender Rhodes piano, organ); Pete McCann (acoustic & electric guitars); Scott Colley (bass); Brian Blade (drums).
    Recorded at Systems Two, Brooklyn, New York on October 9-10, 2000. Includes liner notes by Bill Milkowski.
    Personnel: Dave Pietro (soprano saxophone, alto saxophone, C-melody saxophone); Pete McCann (acoustic guitar, electric guitar); Scott Wendholt (trumpet, flugelhorn); Pete McGuinness (trombone); David Berkman (piano, Fender Rhodes piano, organ); Brian Blade (drums).
    Audio Mixer: Michael Marciano.
    Liner Note Author: Bill Milkowski.
    Recording information: Systems Two Studios, Brooklyn, NY (10/09/2000/10/10/2000).
    Photographer: Jimmy Katz.
    Arranger: Dave Pietro.
    A few of Stevie Wonder's songs have been performed by jazz musicians, but this CD by saxophonist Dave Pietro is one of the first extensive explorations of his work outside of pop. Pietro shifts between soprano, alto, and C-melody saxophones (the latter instrument hasn't been used very much in jazz since the '30s). Pietro's playing is very strong throughout the date, and his arrangements are first-rate, often contrasting sharply with the composer's original approaches. "Another Star" features Pietro's superb C-melody sax in a modal setting that seems to occasionally hint at Miles Davis' "Nardis." His tasty soprano sax is a highlight of "The Secret Life of Plants," a song that could be overlooked by jazz fans who haven't heard Wonder's original record, because such a title might easily be mistaken for a typical new age release. The lively, Latin-flavored "Smile Please" and the lovely ballad "You and I-Interlude" are also highlights, but the dull electric piano keeps "All in Love Is Fair" (a favorite of pianist Marian McPartland, who has performed it many times) from reaching its full potential. The strong supporting cast includes keyboardist David Berkman, trumpeter and flugelhornist Scott Wendholt, trombonist Pete McGuinness, guitarist Pete McCann, bassist Scott Colley, and drummer Brian Blade. One can easily imagine many more jazz musicians following Dave Pietro's lead in putting together a Stevie Wonder songbook of their own. ~ Ken Dryden

  • Critic Reviews
    Down Beat (3/02, p.64) - 4 stars out of 5 - "...Even staunch jazz purists who wouldn't normally give Wonder's music the time of day will find much to enjoy here...Excellent..."
    JazzTimes (4/2002, pp.98-99) - "...Places emphasizes on some of Wonder's less-known material while simultaneously making the familiar tunes sound brand new..."
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