Peppe Merolla

and Jazz Mediterraneo

Pepporijazz 6644922432

Peppe Merolla, drums and vocals; Aldo Farias, guitar, Angelo Farias, bass; Franco De Crescenzo, piano; Enzo Bisogno, keyboard, Aldo Vigorito, bass; Michele Di Martino, piano; Giovanni Amato, trumpet.

Peppe Merolla is a busy man; drummer, percussionist, actor, singer, arranger, he has put together something old and something new with this bright CD.

Opening with "Mediterraneo" a soft guitar cuts loose and sharp percussion keeps it moving along. Ellington's "Caravan" is an outstanding bebop -- the trumpet of Giovanni Amato giving it some meditteranean 'attitude', sharing the solo with Michele Di Martino on piano and Merolla finishing it off on drums -- good expressive playing. "Accarezzame" (Carress Me) is a 19th. Century love ballad which Merolla sings with Italian passion. "Blues For Oriana" features the trumpet of Giovanni Amato who is in good form for the blues. An interesting rhythmic adaption of "Paria Piu Piano" (Speak Softly Love) finishes with a slick drum solo.

This is a sunny collection of tracks played and sung with Neapolitan flair ­ the instrumental playing is of a high standard with solos that are pleasing to the ear. Raining outside? This might brighten the day.

by Ferdinand Maylin

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