In 2016, ten years after The Body and Soul Sessions became a contemporary urban jazz sensation, The Philippe Saisse Trio recaptured fans’ sonic imaginations with two hits that dominated the airplay charts for months- The first single And So But Then” peaked at #8 on the Billboard National Smooth Jazz Airplay chart and ran ked as one Of Billboard’s Top 20 Smooth Jazz Songs for the year. “On The Level” also hit the Top 20 on Billboard.
The dynamic ensemble continues to build momentum towards their next full length album with the release of their latest Single “Blue Rondo,” a freewheeling, high energy burst Of joyfulfunk-jazz that draws from the Paris born Saisse’s fascination with French baroque music. Its rousing, i ious chorus is based on a rondeau from the opera Les 80réades by 18th CenturyFrench composer Jean-Philippe Rameau. Saisse’s muse was sparked as he listened to segmerits Of the opera while an East Coast and tour this past winter with Al Di Meola.
The brass enhanced track is driven by what Saisse calls the “trio plus one” dynamic the group debuted on “On the Level” – a vibe that combines his explosive and inventive piano and retro keyboard melody and improvisations with the nonstop grooves Of acoustic bassist David Finck, drummer Scooter Warner and percussionist Gumbi Ortiz. “Blue Rondo” was mixed by veteran engineer Go Hotoda, who has been a mainstay in the studio with Saisse since co-producing The Body and Soul Sessions. Beyond drawing on his cultural influences and finding fresh ways to bridge classical and jazz, past and present, the keyboardist sees the song as an expression of hiS commitment to optimism. “With Gumbi,” Saisse says, “happiness is becoming our thing. He’s from Cuba and Cuban music is uplifting. We want to be happy, we try to be happy, and we’re all about keeping things joyous and light and not taking life so frickin’ seriously.” – Jonathan Widran (03/22/2017)