Echoes Series

AllMusic Review - Echoes of EllingtonEchoes of Ellington
Echoes of Ellington is one of Intersound’s series of CDs where pianist Gary Motley pays tribute to such icons as Dave Brubeck, Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday and Frank Sinatra. Motley, who is based in Atlanta and teaches at Emory University, brings to this compilation a profound feel for Ellington’s compositions Continue

AllMusic Review - Echoes of BrubeckEchoes of Brubeck
Atlanta-based pianist Gary Motley recorded a series of solo piano tributes to different musicians during the 1990s; this collection focuses on songs composed by (or associated with) Dave Brubeck. Motley seems to prefer to slow down the tempos of many of Brubeck’s compositions in order to take a more introspective approach (especially “In Your Own Sweet Way,” “Three to Get Ready,” and “Bossa Nova U.S.A.”); Continue

AllMusic Review - Echoes of EllaEchoes of Ella
This salute to Ella Fitzgerald features a dozen songs associated with her, but Motley’s intention was not to simply swing them in the way he might have if he had the opportunity to accompany her, but to approach each song with a lyrical touch, usually in a ruminating mood. As a result, they sound a little more reserved than one might expect from a jazz musician, though Motley achieves his goal. Continue

AllMusic Review - Echoes of BillieEchoes of Billie
Pianist Gary Motley recorded a series of five solo piano tribute CDs in the late 1990s for Intersound, with the idea to bring out the lyrical qualities of each vocalist or jazz composer being saluted. He chose ten ballads to honor Billie Holiday, including standards like “Body and Soul” and “Lover Man,” which are indelibly associated with her, though his approach is low key and not necessarily anything like Continue

echoes_of_sinatra_MI0001600723Echoes of Sinatra
This instrumental tribute to Frank Sinatra is one of a series of solo piano CDs by Gary Motley. Most of the ballads seem indelibly associated with the late singer, so one can easily imagine the pianist backing Sinatra and providing exactly what he would want. While Motley captures the essence of gems such as “Nancy (With the Laughing Face)” (named for a young Nancy Sinatra and written by Jimmy Van Heusen Continue