Yes, there have been a few jazz tap dancers, going back to the Swing Era with Jimmy Rushing and Fred Astaire, but none have ever done a whole album like this one by the fleet footed Sarah Reich.Interspersed by recitatives and free verse by the likes of Maiya Sykes, Artyom Manukyani and Lee How, Reich adds podiatric percussion to bopping tunes performed in mix and match form with Danny Janklow/as, Mike Cottone/tp, Aaron McLendon-Jonathan PIson/dr, Sam Barsh-Scott Bradlee/p, Alex Boneham-Brandon K. Brown/b and a host of guests.
The music is amazingly successfully, as Rich high steps with Janklow on the hip “Tap City” and a salsa’d “It’s Tappening.” Some gorgeous and passionate cello work by Manukyani veers between the toes on “Rivive” and a peppy “The Groove” with a rhythm team joining together for Reich to whisk away on the title track. A Basie paced “My Baby Just Cares For Me” brings Sykes voice teamed with Scott Bradlee’s piano for a trip to Kansas City as Reich sashays to 12th and Vine.
I’m not sure what Reich can do for an encore, but I definitely want to see how she does this on stage. WHEW!