A Bay Area native, tenor saxophonist Dayna Stephens makes his auspicious debut on the Criss Cross label with Today Is Tomorrow --- a soaring, lyrical, deeply swinging collection of originals and jazz classics (Hoagy Carmichael's Skylark, Joe Henderson's Black Narcissus).
As a 2003 graduate of the Thelonious Monk Institute, Stephens had the opportunity to work with the likes of Dave Holland, Wayne Shorter and Herbie Hancock, who helped strengthen his complex sensibility as a composer and improviser. In recent years Dayna has appeared with the likes of Carlos Santana, Kenny Barron, Terence Blanchard, Gretchen Parlato and many others.
Joining Stephens on Today Is Tomorrow is a stellar cast, featuring Aaron Parks on piano and the sturdy rhythm section of Kiyoshi Kitagawa on bass and Donald Edwards on drums. Supplementing the lineup are Julian Lage, one of the jazz scene's most exciting newcomers on guitar, and Michael Rodriguez, a fiery trumpeter with credits including Charlie Haden and Gonzalo Rubalcaba. Stephens pilots them through the set with finesse and heart, proving himself a player quickly on the rise.
|1.||Skylark (Hoagy Carmichael) 6:44|
|2.||Kwooked Stweet (Dayna Stephens) 6:37|
|3.||Radio-Active Earworm (Dayna Stephens) 5:55|
|4.||De Pois Do Amor, O Vazio (R.C. Thomas) 8:19|
|5.||Loosy Goosy (Dayna Stephens) 4:46|
|6.||Black Narcissus (Joe Henderson) 7:34|
|7.||Haden's Largo (Dayna Stephens) 6:27|
|8.||Hard-Boiled Wonderland (Aaron Parks) 6:02|
|9.||The Elite (Dayna Stephens) 8:27|
|10.||Cartoon Element (Aaron Parks) 7:34|
Total Time: 69:06
Recorded October 27, 2011 in Brooklyn, NY, USA by Michael Marciano