Album Remarks & Appraisals:
This holiday release features pianist Eric Reed and vocalists Paula West and Erin Bode.
Personnel: Eric Reed (vocals, piano, organ); Paula West, Erin Bode (vocals); Steve Nelson (vibraphone); Barak Mori (bass); Rodney Green (drums).
Recorded at Clinton Studios, New York, New York on April 23 & 24, 2003.
This is part of MaxJazz's "Holiday" series.
Personnel: Eric Reed (vocals, piano, organ); Paula West, Erin Bode (vocals); Steve Nelson Quartet (vibraphone); Rodney Green (drums).
Audio Mixer: Danny Kopelson.
Recording information: Clinton Studio "B", New York, NY (04/23/2003/04/24/2003).
Photographers: Dena Katz; Jimmy Katz.
The Merry Magic Christmas CD by pianist Eric Reed covers many moods. Some of the music is reverent ("Lo, How a Rose E'er Blooming" and "Oh Come All Ye Faithful"), much of it is swinging with Steve Nelson's vibes making the group sound a bit like the Modern Jazz Quartet, and some of it is surprising, including an up-tempo version of "The Little Drummer Boy" and a vocal by Reed on a medium-slow version of "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town." Erin Bode (who is very good on "What Are You Doing New Year's Eve") and Paula West have two vocals apiece. Throughout the set, Eric Reed shows off his versatility in unaccompanied solos ("Christmas Blues" is particularly enjoyable), the trio, a quartet, and backing the singers. A fine effort. ~ Scott Yanow