Michel Navedo might be best remembered, up to now, for fronting legendary local noisers, Nipples of Isis. The release of the trumpeter’s recording New Orleans on My Mind should adjust that. The disc features music that Navedo describes as “up close, personal, romantic and sweet.” It’s an apt description. This is cool jazz with a few unseen turns to make it compellingly addictive.
Navedo got his first trumpet as a kid in Algiers, and played in the Jesuit marching band. Later, he studied music at Southwest Texas State, then in Cuba, where he learned under trumpet wizard, Inaudia Paisan Mallet.
Navedo employs a guitarist instead of piano (Jason Goessl, raised in Morgan City), and the interplay between horn and guitar activates an unknown chemical causing the music to expand. Songs melt into each other not because they lack singularity, but because of the unique conversation going on inside of them.
Standouts are the celestial “Hushabye Mountain” from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and a caressing take on “It Never Entered My Mind,” a standard Miles Davis famously put his stamp on. The elegantly driven guitar in “Hushabye Mountain” sweeps Navedo’s trumpet skyward, while “It Never Entered My Mind” offers a bass solo so sublime it might break your heart.
Navedo cites Davis, Freddie Hubbard and Booker Little as influences. Equally apparent is the influence of his hometown, bubbling up in song after song. Maybe that’s the chemical reaction.