Melody and groove are the watchwords on John Ellis' masterful Criss Cross debut, which mixes optimistic songs composed by the iconic children's television host, Fred (a.k.a. "Mister") Rogers, himself a fine jazz pianist, and dark ones by the late singer-songwriter Elliott Smith.
Joined by New York A-listers Mike Moreno (guitar), Aaron Goldberg (piano), Matt Penman (bass), and Rodney Green (drums), Ellis - playing mostly tenor saxophone and a bit of bass clarinet - addresses the repertoire with a surefooted time feel, gorgeous tone, and abiding melodicism.
On September 25, 2012 WCPN's arts and culture show "Around Noon" featured an interview with John Ellis about his Criss Cross album It's You I Like. You can still listen to the interview in the WCPN web archives.
|1.||What Do You Do? (Fred Rogers) 7:11|
|2.||Memory Lane (Elliott Smith) 9:18|
|3.||It's You I Like (Fred Rogers) 5:33|
|4.||Everything Means Nothing To Me (Elliott Smith) 8:07|
|5.||Let's Think Of Something To Do (Fred Rogers) 8:02|
|6.||Because We're Kids (Frederick Hollander) 2:32|
|7.||You Are Special (Fred Rogers) 4:55|
|8.||Waltz #1 (Elliott Smith) 3:41|
|9.||It's Such A Good Feeling (Fred Rogers) 7:04|
|10.||Won't You Be My Neighbor (Fred Rogers) 3:02|
Total Time: 59:27
Recorded October 25, 2011 in Brooklyn, NY, USA by Michael Marciano