All About Jazz reviews "I Scream Scone!"
**** by Ed Blanco
Organist Adam Scone has played many styles of music throughout his career, from funk, rock, blues, other styles to yes, jazz and in 2013 after performing as a sideman on a saxophonist Ian Hendrickson-Smith recording, decided to consider documenting his first twenty-years playing jazz and ballads and to this end, I Scream Scone! was conceived and born. Inspired by the great Jack McDuff and his arrangements for organ-led quartets that featured a sax, guitar and drums, Scone records here with a quartet on each track using saxophonist Hendrickson-Smith on all tunes while employing various players to share the guitar and drum duties. A Hammond B3 specialist based in New York City, Scone had accustomed himself to playing originals and pushing the edge of the genres but on this album, Scone decided to do something a bit different in documenting his jazz side and so included five jazz standards on the eight-piece repertoire delivering each one with a unique approach providing interesting twists to old favorites. Though this is supposedly a jazz-tinged album, the music starts with a funk-infused original titled "What People Do" that immediately highlights some of Scone's appreciable chops on the instrument as well as featuring a delicious solos from the sax man and guitarist Johnny "Hammond" Smith. Scone ups the tempo on a fast-paced rendition of the standard "Everything Happens to Me," providing one of the finest versions of this classic around. The oft-recorded "Stairway to the Stars" turns the volume down slightly as this balladic wonder mellows out the music highlighted by the leader's soft touches on the keys, the warm brush work of drummer Colby Inzer and Smith's laid back guitar. In stark contrast to the lovely ballad, the title piece rocks and swings and dare I say it, screams all over featuring a drum rumble from Aaron Thurston, loud sounds from Scone with guitarist Matt Chertkoff bringing in the rear. The organist draws from the songbook of legendary band leader Duke Ellington with the inclusion of "In A Sentimental Mood," the second balladic piece of the disc providing Scone with space to showcase his talents in performing gentler material as he does once again on the 1932 Ann Ronell classic "Willow Weep for Me." The Gene Ammons standard "Red Top," and Scone's original finale tune "The Last One," closes out a very fine recording from one of the best organist in the jazz business today. Adam Scone states "I am doing an experiment...a jazz record that includes standards," well from just one sampling of I Scream Scone!, one can easily come to the conclusion that this "experiment" was an unquestioned success for the music is fresh, inviting and engaging on many fronts, well.
Track Listing: What People Do; Everything Happens to Me; Stairway to the Stars; I Scream Scone; In A Sentimental Mood; Red Top; Willow Weep for Me; The Last One.
Personnel: Adam Scone: Hammond B3 organ; Ian Hendrickson-Smith: tenor saxophone; John H. Smith: guitar (1, 3, 7, 8); Matt Chertkoff: guitar (2, 4, 5); Colby Inzer: drums (1, 3, 6-8); Aaron Thurston: drums (2, 4, 5); Dan Muniz: guitar (6).
Record Label: Rondette Jazz