Counterclockwise is the product of more than three years of intense work. Interrupted by a myriad of issues, illnesses, scheduling hassles and other bizarre twists and turns, "CCW" arrives battle scarred yet fully realized and complete. Its ten pieces are tightly composed and arranged, and the production work of Phil Jimenez is simply outstanding. This recording is about the guitar as part of a larger ensemble–sometimes with strings, sometimes with percussion, often with both. The added players on the recording are all masters of their trade. The end result speaks for itself.
As a title, Counterclockwise means a great deal to me. From the rotation of the most powerful storms in the Northern Hemisphere to the directional indications found in daily life, the phrase "turning to the left" is overrun with interpretations and innuendos from harmless to sinister (itself an antiquated term for left-handedness). With hurricanes and tornados, separate but related forces combine to produce phenomenal power and energy, leaving everyone and everything in its wake permanently affected. The destruction is potentially devastating as the force rips across the landscape sparing nothing in its way until its fuel is spent.
Metaphorically the left turn has a great deal of potential energy.
In addition to harnessing such energy, this music has become my refuge. It’s a composition CD, not purely a guitar CD with accompaniment. Through these works I’ve been able to reconnect with some musical threads from my earlier influences, yet present them in a new and exciting way. In a sense I feel as if I’ve moved forward and backward at the same time, or maybe moved forward by moving backwards. At any rate, the musical energy released is more powerful and the ideas more complete than anything I’ve ever laid down in a studio. Thanks to Phil, Vanesa, Simon, Andrew, Rebecca, Melinda, Ed, Alexandra, Dave, Paul and Matt for helping to make it a reality.