Dave Young joined by sextet and guests for new album Mantra

Juno-winning bassist and composer Dave Young has shared the details of his latest album Mantra, coming in November.

The 10-track collection was recorded in the fall of 2020 with Young’s sextet consisting of trumpeter Kevin Turcotte, reedist Perry White, guitarist Reg Schwager, pianist Brian Dickinson and drummer Terry Clarke, along with three guests: Ewen Farncombe on organ, John Johnson on alto sax and flute, and Les Allt on flute.

The music is a mix of original and existing jazz compositions. Six of them are Young’s own tunes, “largely from five to 10 years ago,” while there are also pieces by Woody Shaw, Thelonious Monk, Blossom Dearie and Horace Silver.

The third track, Waltz for Blue, is dedicated to Blue Mitchell, with whom Young played on several occasions at Bourbon Street jazz club in Toronto in the 1980s. The eighth track, Ode to the Southwest was originally recorded with Cedar Walton; Young says he especially likes this version featuring a Hammond B3.

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Mantra was recorded just before Ontario went back into lockdown after the summer of 2020, and Young says he felt fortunate to have that opportunity to reunite with his band.

“There’s a lot of time to step back and really appreciate all the things going on, and to assess the music you’d actually like to record,” he says. “Recording is one of our priorities.”

Produced by Roberto Occhipinti, the album sounds as if the band had picked up right where they left off — a testament to the wealth of skill and experience among Young and his peers.

Here’s the track listing for Mantra:

  1. Green St. Caper
  2. The Gypsy
  3. Waltz for Blue
  4. Evidence
  5. Inside a Silent Tear
  6. Mantra
  7. Opus de Funk
  8. Ode to the Southwest
  9. We Three as One
  10. Myako’s Waltz

Mantra arrives Nov. 5 via Modica Music.