When it comes to combining jazz with European folk idioms, the Scandinavians haven't quite got the monopoly. George Mraz and Emil Viklický have been creating their beautiful blend of jazz and Moravian music for years, although this is their first purely duet album. In their hands the two idioms seem made for each other. The first of these 11 pieces could almost be a kind of blues. Mraz, long a US resident, is one of the most famous bassists in jazz, while pianist Viklický is one of the Czech Republic's top film composers.
…This, and the other Chesky 'New York Sessions' must count as one of the finest modern (in the sence of recent) jazz efforts on SA-CD.
The fifth volume in the Concord Duo Series matches pianist Adam Makowciz and bassist George Mraz in a concert at the Maybeck Recital Hall; both musicians are virtuosoes originally from Eastern Europe who found fame in the U.S. On what is very much a duo set, Mraz gets nearly as much solo space as Makowicz. Their repertoire mixes together six fresh renditions of standards with four of the pianist's complex originals and the harmonically advanced music (which features plenty of close interplay) has enough variety to continually hold one's interest. ~Scott Yanow, All Music Guide
The wonderful communication between these instruments produces an intimate and expressive masterpiece. Also included in this cut, Stella by Starlight! The XRCD is from the very rare JVC // TBM Recordings series of out of print, audiophile CDs. Extended Resolution - 20-bit Digital Technology, K2 Super Coding.
This is an excellent record of Sunao Wada (g) feat. Hitomi Ueda (vo), Ushio Sakai (org), Yoshio Ohtomo (as), George Otsuka (ds), Mitsuaki Furuno (b), Takao Uematsu (ts) & more. "Blues for bird" is an amazing TBM (Three Blind Muce) CD. This album records many splendid songs … In particular Charlie Parker's cover "Now's the time" is very groovy Japanese Jazz. This is a Japanese Jazz classics.
This session was valve trombonist Bob Brookmeyer's first jazz date in 13 years after a period writing for the studios and then away from music altogether. Brookmeyer, who is featured in a quintet with cornetist Thad Jones, pianist Jimmy Rowles, bassist George Mraz and drummer Mel Lewis, proves to still be in prime form playing in an unchanged style. Other than the leader's uptempo blues "In a Rotten Mood" and a Latin piece ("Carib"), the quintet sticks to veteran standards. Highlights include "Sweet and Lovely," "Caravan" and "You'd Be So Nice to Come Home To."
Some of the finer CTI recordings of the late '70s were those led by flugelhornist Art Farmer. Although the emphasis was generally on obscure material (in this case Farmer plays one original, two songs by Dave Grusin and one piece by pianist Fritz Pauer) and often featured musicians who did not normally play together, the results were generally quite rewarding. For this CTI LP (long out-of-print), the focus is almost entirely on Farmer who is joined by keyboardist Grusin, guitarist Eric Gale, flutist Jeremy Steig, either Will Lee or George Mraz on bass and drummer Steve Gadd. The moody music holds one's interest throughout.