by Robert Rusch
#102: FRESH PICKS FOR SPRING LISTENING
JACK BRANDFIELD’S [ts] first recording, I’LL NEVER BE THE SAME [Gut String Records gts052], is surprising in that he chose to do it as a trio. It is a gutsy choice that works well in the capable hands of Randy Napoleon [gtr] and Rodney Whitaker [b]. Napoleon, a veteran guitarist, plays a beautiful counterpart to Brandfield’s choruses on 12 tracks, including tunes by Hank Jones, Ellington, Thad Jones, Gigi Gryce and Jobim. Brandfield shows that his heart is in the right place throughout the recording. As he develops his personality, we may see an influential jazzman emerge.