Jazz CD Reviews

Doug Webb – Another Scene – Posi-Tone

Doug Webb, an under-rated jazz tenor stylist….

Published on November 8, 2013

Doug Webb – Another Scene – Posi-Tone

Doug Webb – Another Scene – Posi-Tone PR 8115, 61:56 [10/22/13] ****:

(Doug Webb – tenor sax; Peter Zak – piano; Dwayne Burno – bass; Rudy Royston – drums)

West Coast-based saxophonist Doug Webb continues to impress. For his fourth CD on the Posi-Tone label, Webb has the support of an East Coast rhythm section to match his intensity and creativity. Doug is based in the Los Angeles, which has not brought on the exposure on the national scene he would have had if either New York or Chicago was his home base.

Working out of the busy movie and television based LA scene, Webb had his days open for movie and television work, especially when he was working with Doc Severinsen‘s big band. Clint Eastwood recognized his talents, as he can be heard on the Million Dollar Baby and Gran Torino soundtracks. I’ve especially dug Webb’s contributions to Bill Holman’s Big Band when I have been down in Los Angeles for the LA Jazz Institute theme weekends. Webb was always featured by Bill for memorable front line sax solos.

On his latest CD, Another Scene, half of the twelve tracks are written by Doug. “Mr. Milo” opens the CD with the melodic swing that Webb handles with such consistency. Playing only tenor this time out, Doug’s “One for Art” increases the intensity spurred on by the talented Rudy Royston on drums. Webb can switch effortlessly from mainstream lines to explore the outside range approaching the playing of the best post bop stylists, even bringing to mind a Coltrane freedom. Pianist Zak has a nice solo mid-track here.

“Smatter” cools down the vibe a bit, while Brubeck’s “Southern Scene” is strikingly beautiful. Clearly Doug can fit in everywhere, as a first call studio musician must. Jobim’s “Double Rainbow” has a sparkling theme aided again by Peter Zak, and the steady bottom end provided by Dwayne Burno, who is making quite a name for himself on numerous East Coast sessions.

Doug’s “Eulogy  has a spiritual motif that would be found between Coltrane and Tyner, while “Rhythm with Rudy” was written by Doug as a tune to interact with his drummer, as Rudy and Doug trade off lines. Vernon Duke’s “What is There to Say” shows Webb’s lyrical abilities to massage a lovely ballad.

Posi-Tone has another winning Doug Webb release on their hands. Hopefully, they can expand his horizons in the future with a few more horns to flesh out his compositions. I’d look forward to that…

TrackList: Mr. Milo, One for Art, Smatter, Southern Scene, Another Step, Double Rainbow, Eulogy, Rhythm with Rudy, What is There To Say, Verdi Variations, Bird Song, Only Trust Your Heart

—Jeff Krow




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