Leon Parker

Leon ParkerThe Simple Life
Leon Parker
(LabelM – 2001)
by Dick Bogle

Unusual music with a groove is what drummer, percussionist, singer and songwriter Leon Parker delivers. Sharing much of the spotlight and contributing scats, wordless vocals and thus creating an exotic tropical feel to this music is Elizabeth Kontomanou. But no sooner does one establish a certain comfort level with feeling tropical than Parker crosses up with the solid groove tune, “Belief.”

It features Xavier Davis on piano with Parker on drums, bassist Ugonna Okegwo and percussionist Kazi Oliver. But it’s altoist Steve Wilson who storms onto the scene with one of the finest recorded solos on alto that I have heard in years. This is a treat from beginning to end, even including primitive worship chants in “Divinity One & Two.”

Reprinted with kind permission of The Skanner.