Sep 23, 2021
We need more music.
That’s true almost anytime, but it rings even truer in the world we live in today
An that’s where Joey DeFrancesco comes in, bringing us More Music, his latest release on Mack Avenue Records.
The legendary organ player has expanded his recorded legacy over the past five years, releasing the politically charged Project Freedom and the intensely spiritual In the Key of the Universe. In addition, Joey and his band backed Rock & Roll Hall of Famer Van Morrison on a pair of soulful albums on the Sony Legacy label.
More Music brings a new trio of Philly players, Drummer Michael Ode is still around, but the versatile Lucas Brown, playing both organ and guitar, adds a new dimension to the band. In addition, Joey steps out from behind the organ to sing, play his trumpet and piano, and for the first time, saxophone as well. The result is an album of ten originals plus a tastefully crooned cover of his friend Mario Romano’s ballad “And If You Please.” The saxophone Joey plays belonged to his grandfather, a reed man who played with the Dorsey Brothers back in the day. A gold-plated Conn NWII from 1925, Joey told me the heartwarming story of how he came to play the classic sax.
Podcast 846 is my conversation with Joey D, as we discuss how More Music was planned out and recorded during the pandemic, why he has been working on his saxophone for the past three years, and the enjoyment of his new trio’s musical flexibility on stage. We also talk about his collaboration with Christian McBride, For Jimmy, Wes and Oliver (Mack Avenue Records), a Big Band album that pays homage to the famous recordings organist Jimmy Smith and guitarist Wes Montgomery made in the mid-Sixties. Musical selections from More Music include “And If You Please” and organ battle between Joey and Lucas, “Where to Go.”