Best Local Albums 2017: Chuck Owen Whispers, surges to four Grammy nominations

USF Professor scores big with a big band.

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Press Handout


Chuck Owen and the Jazz Surge — Whispers on the Wind In a year that saw lots of interesting Bay area jazz news (shout out to La Lucha pianist John O’Leary for raising $5,000 to record an album built around DNA and neuroscience), no one made more noise than USF professor Chuck Owen, who — along with his band the Jazz Surge — earned four 2018 Grammy nominations. It’s all thanks to this seven-track suite propelled by a 19-piece big band, full orchestra, dulcimer and even accordion, which all appear alongside horns (like that of Grammy-winning trumpeter Randy Brecker) and harmonica by Grégoire Maret. Produced by longtime Tampanian Tom Morris, the result is a non-traditional, expansive and sublime recording inspired by the American heartland and accented by composer Sara Caswell, whose violin shines on the nearly 12-minute long Whispers highlight “Can’t Remember Why.” (Summit/MAMA Records)

See a full recap of the year's best local albums in the new issue of Creative Loafing Tampa. Check out the full list via cltampa.com/music. Call your local record store to see if it has this release.

About The Author

Ray Roa

Read his 2016 intro letter and disclosures from 2022 and 2021. Ray Roa started freelancing for Creative Loafing Tampa in January 2011 and was hired as music editor in August 2016. He became Editor-In-Chief in August 2019. Past work can be seen at Suburban Apologist, Tampa Bay Times, Consequence of Sound and The...
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