The Diva Jazz Orchestra: 25th Anniversary Project

20-30 years ago, “All Female Bands” such as Maiden Voyage and Diva may have served a purpose to showcase the idea that “women can  play jazz, too!” Today, the idea seams a bit archaic, as no one would be able to tell the sex of the musicians on this album. I mean, what does a “female tenor sax” sound like?

Musical director and drummerSherrie Maricle along with manager and trumpet/flugelhorn player Jami Dauber put together a varied and hard hitting team on this collection of band  penned pieces. The team shuffles with verve to Dauber’s solo on “East Coast Andy” while Alexa Tarantino’s sweet soprano floats on the elegiac “Seesaw.” The team gets funky for the punchy “Jami’s Tune” as composer Barbasra Laronga contributes a nice horn solo, and a Latin snapper “La Americana” features pianist Tomoko Ohno’s working on her composition along with some nice percussion by Marcia Gallas. The charts are all well thought out, the solos never overstay their welcome and the grooves are nice and deep. Who cares of the type of chromosomes, this one’s got the right jazz dna!

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