Michael Doherty’s Music Log reviews Henry Godfrey Jazz Orchestra: “Attitude & Gratitude”

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Henry Godfrey


by Michael Doherty

Henry Godfrey Jazz Orchestra: “Attitude & Gratitude” – Henry Godfrey is a drummer and composer. The second release from Henry Godfrey Jazz Orchestra contains all original compositions. The album opens with “For McCoy,” which is a tribute to pianist McCoy Tyner (and not to Doctor Leonard McCoy, which is where my brain initially went). This track is dramatic and exciting at times, other times settling into a cool place, and features some excellent work by Rowan Barcha on piano, and by Pritesh Walia on guitar. And of course there is plenty of great stuff on drums. There is something cinematic about the style and presentation. That’s followed by “Mad Max,” which begins with the good groove. With that title, I was expecting something perhaps frantic, with an ominous edge, but this track is a lot of fun, with some great funky energy. Nicholas Suchecki offers some delicious work on baritone saxophone. And then check out Eli Block’s cool work on trumpet. It is easy to get completely caught up in the vibrant power and joy of this track. And before the end, there is even a drum solo. So, yes, this is one of my favorite tracks. Henry Godfrey Jazz Orchestra changes gears with “Forgetting What Will Never Be,” which has a more contemplative air as it begins, and develops a nostalgic vibe. This one clearly has its own tale to tell, and takes us on an interesting journey. That’s followed by “Hot Water,” and almost immediately there is the sense of something building here, getting ready to explode. There is a certain excitement, expressed mainly by the brass section. The album then concludes with “We’ll Get There,” as hopeful a title as any I’ve seen lately (assuming “there” isn’t Florida or Texas or Kentucky). I think many of us have been repeating this to each other and ourselves over the course of the last few years. That we’ll get through this pandemic, that we’ll through this crisis to our democracy, that we’ll all get back on course somehow. And it is music that still makes me believe it (even as I am stuck at home with COVID). And this track does feel like a path forward. Plus, I love that drum solo. This album is scheduled to be released on September 23, 2022.

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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