Music Review by Tom Haugen, Take Effects Review
The Seattle vocalist and songwriter Ben Black brings us 11 original songs here that are inspired by mysticism and meditation, and he’s got an all star of musicians including Bill Anschell, Dave Peterson, Jeff Johnston, Mark Ivester, David Lange and Brenda Kay Neth along with him.
“Wonderland” opens the listen with Black’s soulful pipes illuminating the frisky keys from Anschell and Peterson’s spirited guitar work, and “Wind” follows with a soft and poetic display of emotive and cautious instrumentation that benefits much from Johnson’s hypnotic bass.
The middle portion brings us the elegant and warm title track, where Ivester’s fluid drumming radiates deft skill amid Black’s incredible range, while “Sorrow” is a very intimate and pretty album highlight that is profoundly powerful while embracing accordion from Lange.
“South” lands close to the end, and emits a timeless jazz flavor where the players interact with much sensitivity, and “Night” finishes the listen with some mystery and culture entering the lush and creative exit.
A very heartfelt effort, Black sings with a tremendous amount of care, and he brings 30+ years of experience in the jazz scene to these very distinct songs that are fueled by a voice that’s so divine, you’ll swear you’ve never heard anything like it before.
Ben Blacks new album “Mystery and Wonder” is one of the biggest gainers-spins according to Jazz Week top 300 chart, December 20, 2021. This means LOTS of radio play. Keep your ears open! Learn more about this CD release here.
“Mystery and Wonder” is being played on Jazz Radio all over the United States and Europe. Grateful to be included with this great lineup of artists that are being featured on French Radio show “Les Cats se rebiffent” (Cats rebel)
Ben Blacks new album “Mystery and Wonder” placed in Origin’s full-page ad in January’s DownBeat Magazine!
I am so happy that my new album “Mystery and Wonder” is being included in this full page ad coming out in the January 2022 issue of DOWNBEAT …. it will be on shelves later this month and the digital copy will be out in the the next week or so. Grateful to be in the company of all these wonderful artists with a special shout out to the the late Jim Knapp and Nnenna Freelon, who is nominated this year for a grammy for “Time Traveler” in the Best Jazz Vocal Album category.
Do you want to chat about jazz, music, life and spirituality? I’m available for interviews, podcasts and speaking engagements. If you have topics you’d like to discuss, please reach out via email, I’m happy to brainstorm ideas and make something *magical* happen.