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Wallace Roney Celebrates The Jazz Youth

In a typically selfless move, the Philly trumpeter showcases some fresh faces in his latest album

By Max Dembo | Video of the Day | September 2, 2019
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In the mid-1980s, Wallace Roney’s youthful virtuosic trumpet playing fascinated post-bop fans. So much so that he was recognised by a certain Miles Davis and even joined him on stage in Montreux in 1991. Three years after the master died, Davis’ faithful companions from his historic quintet - Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Ron Carter and Tony Williams - even suggested that Roney should play the trumpet on the album A Tribute to Miles (1994). Despite having such a hard act to follow, the Philadelphia native nevertheless managed to assert himself as a significant force on the jazz scene... One year after his 60th birthday and with more than twenty albums to his credit as a bandleader, Wallace Roney is still contributing to this impeccable blend of hard bop and post-bop. And with Blue Dawn - Blue Nights, this time he is the master. A master who surrounds himself with younger stars such as the pianist Oscar Williams II (31 years old), bassist Paul Cuffari (20 years old), saxophonist Emilio Modeste (19 years old) and his nephew, the drummer Kojo Odu Roney (only 15 years old!). The group is supported on some tracks by guitarist Quintin Zoto as well as Lenny White, the legendary drummer who played for Chick Corea’s band, Return to Forever, and for Miles Davis from the Bitches Brew period. And to further highlight his young accomplices, Wallace Roney has chosen not to sign any of the eight themes on his refined album. © Max Dembo/Qobuz

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