Pianist and composer Geoffrey Keezer returns with a new genre-bending release, Playdate.
For his 23rd album as a leader, Keezer has enlisted a roster of distinguished, familiar collaborators known collectively as Geoffrey Keezer & Friends. The ensemble consists of organist Shedrick Mitchell, saxophonist Ron Blake, bassist Richie Goods and drummer Kendrick Scott.
Playdate also features special guest performances from guitarists Aayushi Karnik and Nir Felder, French hornist Rachel Drehmann and percussionist Munyungo Jackson.
Together, the ensemble plays an amalgamation of funk, hard bop, gospel and blues along with soaring string arrangements.
In the years leading up to this recording, Keezer had been writing string arrangements more frequently, making contributions to Shedrick Mitchell’s What Do You Say?, the Baylor Project’s Grammy-nominated album Generations, and Richie Goods’ My Left Hand Man.
Playdate features original compositions by Keezer and Mitchell and an arrangements of a tune by The Brothers Johnson.
On Playdate, an even more seasoned Keezer continues to deeply engage with his creativity while surprising himself with the heights he and his ensemble can reach in their dynamic interplay.
“I’m trying to dig deeper and deeper into what is my style, my personality as a pianist, and how I can develop it more,” the bandleader says. “I want there to be moments on this record that make you do a double take. I want it to be unpredictable and exciting and fun to listen to.”
Here’s the track listing for Playdate:
- Her Look, Her Touch
- M’s Bedtime Blues
Geoffrey Keezer & Friends’ Playdate will be released Aug. 12, 2022, via MarKeez Records.