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I’ve had the most enviable pleasure of listening to Greg Piccolo play his battered but trusty Selmer Mark VI tenor sax for going on 40 years, and I have not heard a bad performance yet. 

 

He was leading Roomful of Blues when we first met, tearing up dance halls around the land with hard edged and blues drenched solos, and for decades he was renowned among his contemporaries as the toughest and most soulful tenor player out there.

 

His forte has always been playing with tone, feeling and economy, and these strengths come through loud and clear on this recording, his first recorded venture into the land of jazz. He has always had a soft spot for ballads and slow blues, and his playing here, gorgeously accompanied by keyboardist Shinichi Otsu and drummer Bobby Ruggiero, exemplifies his taste and appreciative understanding of the song, and most importantly, the blending of sound and feeling to all its parts.

 

So when it is late into the evening, and the wine has been poured, and the candles flicker, and the music soaks the room, and the question is asked, “Who Did This?”, you can tell ‘em, “Greg Piccolo. Greg Piccolo, the man with the horn. Greg Piccolo, the man with the tone. Greg Piccolo, the man with the feeling.”

That’s who.

 

-Bob Bell