Published Nov 17, 2020Born in the Czech Republic and raised in Ottawa, saxophonist Petr Cancura brings a world of influence to his craft. After a sojourn in Brooklyn, where he shared stages and studios with a who's who of the New York jazz scene, and aside from a stint playing with Rwandan musician Mighty Popo, Cancura has used his return to Canada to run the gamut of roots music, including a series of folk LPs and performances with singer-songwriters like Kathleen Edwards and Jeremy Fisher.
On his latest LP, Don't Let It Stop!, Petr joins forces with a pair of like-minded genre-blenders to record a joyous piece of work. Recorded at the On the One venue in Greensboro, NC, Cancura is joined by famed jazz guitarist (and D'Angelo and Frank Ocean collaborator) Charlie Hunter on his iconic Big6 guitar/bass hybrid and New Orleans drummer Geoff Clapp (Ellis Marsalis, Terence Blanchard) for this nine-track/63-minute performance.
A truly collaborative effort, this LP showcases each musician wonderfully. Led by Cancura's buoyant playing, opening track "Soulidarity" carries a jubilant Henry Mancini melody, which is anchored by Hunter's echo-laden guitar and confirmed by Clapp's random shouts of joy.
As the trio work through a cycle of crisp, rhythmic parade jazz, the set is given a bit of levity by the standout "Country Song" — a soulful ballad given a level of grit by Hunter and Clapp's minimal but tasteful arrangements.
Recorded in a performance space for a small audience, the intimacy grants the trio freedom to control the energy and pacing of the set, allowing them to stretch out during the album's second half, including "There is a Chance" and "Good Times." On Don't Let It Stop!, Cancura, Hunter and Clapp remind the listener of the many facets of mood and influence needed to create a jubilant live performance. (Roots2Boot Recordings)