The seeds of Ulster County-based trumpet man Chris Pasin's excellent new solo album transpired from an offer by Planet Arts for the veteran musician to put on a concert of his original compositions in October 2014. As an artist, the New York-born Pasin first picked up the horn at age nine and studied under the tutelage of such masters as the legendary brass teacher Carmine Caruso, West Coast jazz great Jimmy Giuffre, and renowned music theorist / bandleader George Russell, whose orchestra he performed with during a residence at the Village Vanguard. And that's not to mention being a key member of one of Buddy Rich's last big bands in the '80s.
One can hear all of these influences come to the fray upon listening to Random Acts of Kindness, recorded in Kingston at bassist John Menegon's Upland Recording Studio in an inspired two-month span following the aforementioned performance. Working on his own rendition of the classic quintet lineup featuring a guitarist (the immensely talented Mark Klienhaut) instead of a saxophone, this seven-song program is rounded out by Kansas City's Wayne Hawkins on piano and drummer Dave Berger. The group gracefully traverses a litany of Pasin's trumpet influences, be it Don Cherry ("OCDC"), Kenny Wheeler ("Fragile Creatures"), or, of course, Miles Davis, whose spirit can be heard all over songs like "Kayte Sunrise" and "Nature of the Beast." Random Acts of Kindness is the quintessence of a most memorable career for this talented man with a horn. Planetarts.org.