Energy Fields

Article excerpt

Ralph Lalama Quartet

Energy Fields

Mighty Quinn MQP 1116

Ralph Lalama (ts) John Hart (gtr) Rick Petrone (bs) Joe Corsello (dms) Recorded Stamford, CT during January & February 2008

The Moontrane/Buzzy/Nonchalant/Old Folks/Like Someone In Love/ United/Indian Summer/Just In Time/Blackberry Winter TT: 59:56

This is an important disc by this intermittent ensemble. By the merit of the players, the odds are good for sticking together. Their versatility ranges from tenderness to intensity, with that unpredictability we all want.

Since appearing on Pennsylvania's population map 57 years ago, Ralph Lalama has graced the sax sections of bands led by Woody Herman, Buddy Rich, and then the Thad Jones-Mel Lewis band. Thad was the one who lured the Sonny Rollins and Joe Henderson-influenced tenorist to New York City. And Ralph remained, lifting the Jones-Lewis successor ork, the Vanguard Monday Night Band.

When guitarist John Hart stepped out of Virginia the prevailing Wes Montgomery influence put him on the right road. He also worked with Buddy Rich but, in the small band stakes, Hart was hired by top soul-jazz leaders such as Brother Jack McDuff and Lou Donaldson.

Rick Petrone emerged from Connecticut and also put time in with Buddy Rich, Maynard Ferguson, and others since the 1970s. Joe Corsello is an interesting story. He studied drums under the influential Alan Dawson (Booker Ervin, Lee Konitz, Jaki Byard, a handful of Hamptonites, etc) at the Berklee College of Music. Joe worked with Barry Miles, Sal Salvadore, Benny Goodman and then, when he married and wanted a family, he quit music (except for some local gigs) and went to work for the Stanford Police Department. …