Notes That Rhyme
Scott Simmerman's piano playing has been integral to the local jazz scene of Knoxville, Tennessee for the past 12 years. This is his second CD as a leader and his first solo recording. Notes that Rhyme is a collection of 15 classic jazz standards plus one original by a local patron. Simmerman's thoughtful, pristine arrangements are well balanced between the choice melodies and his rich improvisations. Influences from Oscar Peterson, Monty Alexander and Hank Jones are evident in the fluid bebop solo lines of A Foggy Day and It Might As Well Be Spring. A little Fats Waller shows up in the joyous stride piano of Isn't This A Lovely Day and On The Sunny Side of The Street. Once I Loved and If I Should Lose You showcase Simmerman's adept Latin feel, recalling some of Clare Fisher's solo work. Delicate ballads like Time After Time and Moonlight In Vermont reveal Simmerman's patience with a melody and his lyricism. Other highlights include an Ahmad Jamal-esque treatment of Tenderly and sly references to Ellington, Gershwin, Debussy, and even The Wizard Of Oz. The music on Notes that Rhyme bears the same quality as the artwork for the CD-the closer you get the richer it becomes.