Jim Schapperoew: Soliloquy (2005)
Drummer Jim Schapperoew (pronounced SHA-per-o) has been working in jazz since the late 1960s. He attended the Berklee School of Music in Boston with a major in arranging and composition, and he's recorded with the all-star roster that we see on this two-CD collection of pieces from 1979 to 1993. Based in New England, Schapperoew works hard, but he's kept a low profile in the industry, preferring to create good music and know that straight-ahead jazz fans love what he does.
With this "get acquainted" compilation, we can feel the drummer's influence in driving each of these groups, ranging in size from trios through septets, through their mainstream paces. He solos with authority, giving his audience a crystal clear persuasion that centers on appropriateness of texture and voracious energy.
With saxophonist Frank Strozier, Schapperoew colors the music brilliantly, letting bassist Buster Williams provide a rhythmic foundation while supplying various musical suggestions. The quartet fills the studio with powerful straight-ahead thrills. With saxophonist Bob Mover, Schapperoew enthuses in a similar manner as bassist Steve Swallow walks the rhythm, creating a solid foundation. They're loud and raucous, however, in their pursuit of a hearty post bop persona.
With George Coleman and Tommy Flanagan, the drummer sashays through a lovely "Wave" at a live 1984 appearance in Dublin, Ireland. Guitarist Louis Stewart complements Coleman's hot tenor for an eighteen-minute sojourn through mainstream territory. Together, they make fine music.
Similarly, a twenty-minute interpretation of "Invitation" comes from Schapperoew's 1983 New York appearance with Strozier, Art Baron, Clifford Jordan, Warren Chiasson, Reggie Workman, and Phil Wilson. The band's sound does not present itself so well, as their jam session appears to be caught by accident. Microphones are placed too close to the vibraphone and drum set, and too far away from the saxophones. Still, it's an opportunity to enjoy their performance up close and personal.
Track Listing: Volume One: Rio; Stop Start; The Night Has a Thousand Eyes; Wave; Invitation; Jitterbug Waltz; Love Letters; Lover Man. Volume Two: Wave; Ballade; Claudia; New Impressions; Invitation.
Personnel: Jim Schapperoew: drums; Tommy Flanagan, Charles Farrell, George McFetridge: piano; Bryan Carrott, Warren Chiasson: vibraphone; Reggie Workman, George Mraz, Jeff Fuller, Phil Bowler, Buster Williams, Cecil McBee: bass; Steve Swallow, Jerry Tyler: electric bass; Phil Wilson, Jeff Hanes: percussion; Mike Coppola, Louis Stewart: electric guitar; Frank Strozier, Bob Mover: alto saxophone; George Coleman, Barry Marshall, Clifford Jordan: tenor saxophone; Art Baron, Frank Lacy: trombone.