MICA BETHEA — Suite Theory

Jazz music community with review and forums

MICA BETHEA - Suite Theory cover
4.00 | 2 ratings | 1 review
Buy this album from MMA partners

Album · 2018


1. Crystal Clear 11:20
2. Destiny’s Boat 9:02
3. Miniscus 9:13
4. Guardian of Forever 8:10
5. Destiny’s Boat (alternate take) 8:50


trumpet Greg Balut, Dave Champagne, Daniel Rollan, Ray Callender
trombone Michael Deese, Diego Herrada “de la Vega” Ventura, Lance Reed
bass trombone Gina “Badeeduh” Benalcazar
alto/tenor/soprano sax/flute Todd DelGiudice
alto/tenor/soprano sax/flute Daniel Dickinson
tenor/alto sax/flute Juan Carlos Rollan
tenor/alto sax/clarinet Jose Rojas
bari sax/bass clarinet Seth Ebersole
piano/Rhodes Josh Bowlus
guitar James Hogan
bass Dennis Marks
drums John Lumpkin Jr
percussion Terry “Doc” Handy

All music composed and arranged by Mica Bethea

About this release

self release

Thanks to snobb for the addition


More places to buy metal & MICA BETHEA music

  • CDUniverse - Specializing in the sale of domestic and imported music CDs and Imports


Specialists/collaborators reviews

For the modern big band enthusiast who wants to keep up with what’s new, there is a name you should know if you don’t already, and that is Mica Bethea. Mica released his first big band album back in 2011, but then nothing until last year’s “Stage n’ Studio”, followed quickly by this year’s “Suite Theory”. What a difference a year makes as Mica’s new one shows him starting to really evolve and develop as a writer and arranger. “Stage n’ Studio” is a good CD and it pulled positive reviews, but on this new one, for the first time, Bethea has written every composition himself, and his compositions have grown in complexity and ambition. “Suite Theory” is a four movement composition that attempts to illustrate Mica’s life starting from a carefree young man to a post-car accident (entirely not his fault) quadriplegic, through post-accident depression, and finally to a life reaffirming decision to press on with his work as a composer. Certainly these are all vividly personal events that would make one reach deep into one’s creativity.

Movement one, “Crystal Clear”, is a swingin number that seems to reference Ellington as Mica’s opening melody is passed around among the various band sections as they introduce endless variations on the opening theme. The many wide open solos that follow continue the melodic variance. Movement two, “Destiny’s Boat”, deals with waking up in a hospital bed with one’s life changed in ways that no one could possibly anticipate. This track is more mysterious and the odd colorful orchestrations recall Herbie Hancock’s Sextet, or his “Speak Like a Child” album. Todd Guidice delivers a killer sax solo on this one, which Bethea liked so much that he closes the CD with a second take of this movement so that Todd could take his solo even further out. Movement three, “Meniscus”, carries an Afro-Cuban influence with more grooving solos. The final movement, “Guardian of Forever”, features long complex rapid unison horn lines that fall in between neo-bebop and an over the top prog rock arrangement. The rockin element is pushed by James Hogan’s guitar solo that is part earthy blues rock and part soaring Allan Holdsworth style fusion.

Modern big band fans need to take note, Mica Bethea is one that you need to check out as he looks to be in this for the long haul. Its truly impressive how “Suite Theory” has shown such growth in the areas of composition and arrangement, but if there is anything I miss from his previous album, it’s the hardcore funk of his “Hang Up Your Hang Ups” cover, and the neo-classical melody of “Birth Rite”. Given the strength of these last two albums, it should be interesting to see what Micah comes up with next, hopefully he won’t keep us waiting too long.

Members reviews

No MICA BETHEA SUITE THEORY reviews posted by members yet.

Ratings only

  • bollotoral

Write/edit review

You must be logged in to write or edit review


Rating by members, ranked by custom algorithm
Albums with 30 ratings and more
A Love Supreme Post Bop
Buy this album from our partners
Kind of Blue Cool Jazz
Buy this album from our partners
The Black Saint and the Sinner Lady Progressive Big Band
Buy this album from our partners
Blue Train Hard Bop
Buy this album from our partners
My Favorite Things Hard Bop
Buy this album from our partners

New Jazz Artists

New Jazz Releases

Cloud 10 Nu Jazz
Buy this album from MMA partners
Cool Shades Pop/Art Song/Folk
Buy this album from MMA partners
Eric Vloeimans & Will Holshouser : Two for the Road Post-Fusion Contemporary
Buy this album from MMA partners
More new releases

New Jazz Online Videos

Honeysuckle Rose
js· 22 hours ago
The Hit
js· 5 days ago
In A Sentimental Mood (Solo In Denmark)
js· 5 days ago
More videos

New JMA Jazz Forum Topics

More in the forums

New Site interactions


Latest Jazz News


More in the forums

Social Media

Follow us