Jerry Bergonzi's quintessentially modern tenor sax style melds the linear, chromatic approach of such greats as Joe Henderson and Wayne Shorter with the horizontal, chordal techniques of John Coltrane. His tone is full-bodied with an occasional hard edge, enhanced by a savvy use of dynamics and creatively varied articulation. He's an expressive and versatile player, as comfortable playing the hoariest of jazz standards as he is playing an Ornette-ish free tune. Above all, his manner of playing is utterly spontaneous and distinctive. Along with such contemporaries as Joe Lovano, Michael Brecker and Dave Liebman, Bergonzi has helped define the modern approach to his instrument. Featuring pianist Bruce Barth and trumpeter Phil Grenadier, Shifting Gears is Bergonzi's first quintet recording for Savant Records and finds in him in fine form as a player and as a composer. Jerry's quirky compositions always challenge the listener but, at the same time, never do they alienate them, keeping one foot within the bounds of tradition, even if it is sometimes just within those bounds.