In My Own Words
Jon Burr Quartet
Rich Perry-tenor sax, Bill Charlap-piano, Terry Clarke-drums, Jon Burr-bass, leader, composer
Recorded in 1993 and issued on the Cymekob label in 1996, scheduled for reissue on CD in 2012.
“This is a terrific recording, a first class quartet under the leadership of a fine bassist, Jon Burr. Bassists have a way of surprising people when they come out of the rhythm section role and reveal a talent for composition, arrangement, and the balance and direction of an ensemble. There is a feel here not unlike that of vintage Steps Ahead: certainly Rich Perry’s tone on tenor recalls Michael Brecker, and the leader’s supple sense of time in ensemble playing matches up well with that of Eddie Gomez. Burr’s solos bring out a voice very much his own, however, a voice we hear more of in the even dozen engagingly melodic compositions that he has contributed to the session. Bill Charlap on piano and Terry Clarke on drums round out the band—and the result is as well-rounded as one might ask.
—Bill Bennett/Jazz Times
“An impressive debut recording featuring NYC bassist Jon Burr as leader. Working with pianist Bill Charlap, saxophonist Rich Perry, and drummer Terry Clarke, Burr explores the heart of mainstream jazz. But this talented group is not working over standards; twelve of the thirteen compositions are Burr originals. Gorgeous is the word for them. From the contrapuntal “Blear” to the evocative, Horace-inspired “Silver Water,” Burr’s melodic gift is omnipresent and roams from the sweet to moody. “Lament” and “Snowfall” are particularly staggering compositions.
Burr’s is the kind of work that makes you think jazz isn’t being made in the obvious places, by the “young lions.” Even though he’s a well-known bassist on the New York scene, Burr seems to have escaped notice by the major U.S. jazz labels. The reason why escapes me.
—Philip Dawdy, Bassics Magazine,Vol VI, #2