In the mid-1980s, the now 70-year-old American jazz saxophonist and flutist Steve Slagle began to go into business for himself, leading his own formations. His métier is jazz more or less strongly influenced by Latin sounds. He contributes to albums by the Brazilian Milton Nascimento, travels the world in all directions and finally expands his musical spectrum by collaborating with Elvis Costello, Dr. John and even the Beastie Boys. In addition, there is a fruitful collaboration with guitarist Dave Stryker and an ongoing solo discography that now amounts to a good fifteen albums.
The majority belief is that the Corona epidemic, which has had us firmly in its grip for over a year now, making cultural events impossible or at best limiting them to streaming, has no positive aspects whatsoever. By and large, that's certainly true. Still, there are exceptions. Aside from the fact that the environment is benefiting from significantly reduced exposure, there are some artists who are able to use the virus-induced forced break from live performances productively to some extent. Such is the case with Steve Slagle: "Since the lockdown in March of 2020 I have had more chances than ever to compose, and Rick Simpson, the producer of my last four recordings, asked me mid-summer if I could do something for three horns and record in fall of 2020. At the time we all thought the “coast would be clear” by then but it was not, and an open recording studio was hard to find. Luckily, we got Sear Sound NYC on 48th Street studio A, a very big room with a concert grand Steinway! The recording, which will come out in spring of 2021 is called “Nascentia,” which means “birth” and features a Suite in 3-parts that I composed for three horns. I am looking forward to “springing” this on the weary world! We were lucky to get some of the greatest musicians in New York, all eager to play in these times."
When someone has been successful in the world of jazz for forty years, as Steve Slagle has, it's rather easy to find outstanding musicians who are eager to play with you, and every one of those on Nascentia is among the crème de la crème of the New York jazz scene. So, it's no wonder that this album has the makings of a smash hit, especially since the front man of the ad hoc band delivers the fluid solos and always leads the way. He also leaves a lot of space within the arrangements, so that his playing and that of his fellow musicians can develop their full effect. The vitality of the album is infectious, containing music that will make jazz lovers smile.
The musical package tied to Steve Slagle's album Nascentia is flawless and enjoys a recording technique that is the finest that can be produced in studios today.
Steve Slagle, alto saxophone, flute
Jeremy Pelt, trumpet (tracks 2, 3, 6, 8, 9)
Clark Gayton, trombone (tracks 2, 4, 9)
Bruce Barth, piano
Ugonna Okegwo (Eew-Gone-a Oh-keg-whoa), bass
Jason Tiemann (T-MAN), drums