Jazz & Blues Magazine reviews Blue Muse, It Never Entered My Mind

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blue muse jazz


by Ron Weinstock

Blue Muse CD Cover - It Never Entered My Mind

It Never Entered My Mind

Blue Muse is a Jacksonville Florida based band
consisting of Jarrett Carter, guitar; Cody Wheaton,
bass; Javian Francis, piano; John Medico, drums; Jack
Miller, drums; Sarah Lee, tenor sax; Lance Reed, trombone;
and Steve Strawley, trumpet & flugelhorn. Blue
Muse was formed after saxophonist Sarah Lee left her
20-year career in Information Technology and pursued
her passion, jazz. It was while attending Jacksonville
University that she brought together the jazz musicians
who became Blue Muse. “It Never Entered My Mind”
is this group’s second album.

This album is a well-played recording in the vein
of the classic Blue Note recordings of the sixties, with
the influence of Wayne Shorter, Horace Silver, and
Art Blakey particularly evident. Three of the six tunes
are Shorter compositions. The opening track, “One
By One,” was by Shorter and recorded by Blakey and
the Jazz Messengers. It is a driving performance with
July • August 2021 • Issue 397 Page Eleven
clean, crisp ensemble portions and engaging solos from
Reed, Francis, Lee, Strawley, Carter, and Wheaton.
Following is the title track, the only standard on this
album. Strawley’s muted trumpet opening with a lyrical
solo while the other horns provide atmosphere in
the background. Carter again impresses with a guitar
interlude. A finger-popping rendition of Horace Silver’s
“Nutville” follows with some hot trumpet before Sarah
Lee takes a dynamic, rhythmic solo before Reed’s wellburnished
trombone solo and Medico’s fascinating use
of his whole drum kit on his solo.

“Sweet Sour” is another Wayne Shorter composition
initially recorded by Art Blakey. Guitar Carter dazzles
on this selection, followed by Reed’s gravelly trombone
and Francis’ fluid piano. Also heard are interpretations
of Joe sample’s “Freedom Sound” and Shorter’s
“Ping Pong.” Again, there are spirited solos set against
a tight, responsive ensemble on more marvelously
played, straight-forward hard bop performances.

Blue Muse is calling this an EP as it ‘only’ has 40 minutes of
music. In the days of vinyl LPs, this would have been
a full LP, and in any case, these six tracks offer 40
minutes of solid performances in this vein.

Kari Gaffney

Kari Gaffney

Since 1988 Kari-On Productions has helped artists get an even footing in the industry through jazz promotion in the genres of Jazz, World & Latin Jazz through Jazz Radio and Publicity. Why do we do both, because they compliment each other, and we care about fiscal longevity for the artist.

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