Rose Ann Dimalanta Trio – ‘It’s Time’ (Album Review)

On the new album It’s Time, the Rose Ann Dimalanta Trio serves as musical chefs who sprinkle healthy dashes of jazz, soul, R&B, pop and funk into each song to make it a full-course meal for your ears.

The Rose Ann Dimalanta Trio came together in 2016 in Oakland, California. Before establishing the trio, Dimalanta played with Prince and the New Power Generation, James Brown’s Funky People, Bobby Byrd and Vicki Anderson, and others. She’s shared the stage with Stevie Wonder, Sheryl Crow, Beyonce, and Coolio, just to name a few.

Dimalanta might be the star of the trio, but her accompanying artists are just as talented. With Raymond McKinley on bass, often regarded as the “bass player’s bass player”, according to the band’s online bio, and Massimo Buoanno on drums, considered one of Europe’s most in-demand musicians, the trio is a confident, genre-bending force.

The album’s debut single, “No Goodbyein’”, has a rhythmic structure that nestles into your consciousness the first time you hear it. It’s upbeat, optimistic feel makes it a great track to add to your exercise playlist. The chorus will have you reaching for that next mile, next step, next goal. It’s also catchy and something you can find some kind of new wrinkle in almost every time you hear it.

Things slow down with “Miles”, a light, sensual piece aided by stellar piano and violin backing instrumentals. Dimalanta’s voice is still the star, and with good reason as her personality shines through every track she appears in.

“Seven Days”, meanwhile, takes you on a synthesized journey that starts quietly enough before ending with an all-out instrumental jam. “Latin Soul” the other instrumental song on It’s Time and “Seven Days”, are likely the strongest songs on the album — with “Latin Soul” going in a much different direction but staying just as fresh and memorable.

Another standout track, “Happily Never After”, will have you stopping whatever you’re doing to appreciate the beauty displayed, particularly by the jazz piano solo that not only complements Dimalanta’s sassy vocals, but leads the way at times, too.

If you’re a fan of Gregory Porter, Jamie Cullum, Norah Jones, PJ Morton, Tower of Power, Candy Dulfer, or Esperanza Spalding, you’ll find something to love on It’s Time.
It’s a collection of songs that traverse well-covered grounds in terms of lyrical content, but they make up for it with their outstanding instrumental and vocal abilities.

It was also an album that came together in a very spur-of-the-moment way.
According to the promo info, “It was an organic process where Rose Ann, after a long musical pause and not at all sure of coming back as a bandleader, began to compose again and sent songs to her old friend Raymond for some feedback, who with each song he heard was convinced they needed to go in the studio to record. Massimo was added to the mix; there was great chemistry between the three and here we are. Needless to say, this album is labor of love and done with no other agenda but to make some good music and create memorable moments.”

It’s Time, the new album from the Rose Ann Dimalanta Trio, is available now.