Michael “Dodo” Marmarosa may not be the most familiar name among history’s important jazz pianists. Born in 1925, he was a prime participant in the early days of bop. It’s probably safe to say that his composing skills may have been secondary to his playing. So it comes as a real delight that pianist Craig Davis, bassist John Clayton, and drummer Jeff Hamilton take on eleven of Dodo’s original works. There is a spirit of optimism and pure fun present in much of Maramosa’s writing. And Craig Davis (a new name to me) makes clear the joy he’s experiencing playing this “feel good” music. Add the musical expertise of John and Jeff to the project, and you have both: a rare part of jazz history and an absolute delight to the ear.
Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild; 2022; appx. 52 min.
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