Todd Strait, There’ll Be Some Changes Made (Todd Strait)
Drummer Todd Strait has spent significant stretches of his career in New York and Portland and freelanced with a cross-section of world-class musicians. Having toured extensively, Strait is back in his Kansas City home territory. His first album as a leader demonstrates not only the flexibility and power of his drumming, but also the connections he has established over the years. The veteran pianist Bill Mays worked hand in glove with Strait on impressive arrangements of pieces by composers that include Beethoven (“Für Elise”), Thad Jones (“Kids Are Pretty People”) and Wayne Shorter (“Infant Eyes”). Strait sings “Old Folks” in memory of his father. Mays, bassist Bob Bowman and guitarist Danny Embrey are a superb rhythm section. There are bonus contributions from guest pianist Laura Caviani and—via a charming tape recording—Strait’s daughter Naomi singing “What A Wonderful World” when she was 7.