February 27, 2024


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CD review: Mario Pavone The Tampa Quartet – Isabella 2021: Video, CD cover

Mario Pavone recorded two albums in the final stages of a cancer that he fought for 17 years, when 2021 was starting: “Blue Vertical” (Out of Your Head Records) and this “Isabella”.

Now that Pavone isn’t with us anymore, the second of these two final editions has a special significance: it’s a pungent tribute to his granddaughter Isabella, who died in 2020 when she wasonly 23 years old and whom, he said, «stole my heart since her birth». The feelings involved are deep and they’re reflected in the inner tissue of the music. Pavone had one thing in mind: «My joy will be in re-uniting with her.»

This is the antecipation of that joy turned into music. An autodidact double bassist with very personal techniques (firstly shown to the world when he joined Bill Dixon and Thomas Chapin) and a rich musical mind needing the collaboration of others (Marty Ehrlich and Steven Bernstein in the past) to put it on paper, this time he had trumpeter Dave Ballou as the arranger and accomplice in translating his ideas to a group sound. With his son Michael playing guitar and with friends Mike DiRubbo and Michael Sarin, Pavone created the most beautiful suite about the noblest of all emotions, love, and about how love survives even death.


  1. Twardzik 6:45
  2. Philosophy Series 6:20
  3. Blue Vertical 7:27
  4. Isabella 7:05
  5. Good Treble 7:43
  6. OKWA 5:03
  7. 2/3rds Radial 4:59
  8. Double Elkna 1:07

Mario Pavone – double bass
Michael Pavone – guitar
Mike DiRubbo – alto saxophone
Michael Sarin – drums
All compositions by Mario Pavone (Pavo Publishing/BMI)
All arrangements by Dave Ballou

Isabella | Mario Pavone The Tampa Quartet | Clean Feed

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