By the early 2000's I had gained a significant amount of experience with traditional jazz, and I was finally beginning to break away from my rock and fusion background. Traditional jazz and its swing and Latin styles were becoming more natural-feeling to me as my focus had shifted in that direction. By this time, I was gaining inspiration more from the major hard bop and neo bop musicians than I was from the fusion and pop jazz players. The material in this album showcases that direction.
The majority of these pieces comprise roughly half of a recording session from 2001. By this time, Andrew (Korbel) and I were exploring self-produced recordings, and we managed to capture a very rewarding set of performances. During these few years and through five or six self-produced sessions, I learned some valuable skills and lessons that have helped me tremendously in some current projects. So, while these recordings are not quite studio quality, they represent what was happening musically during that time very well.
By the time these few years were over, I began to have a much more demanding teaching schedule, and slowly but steadily the opportunities to record and perform began to subside, and the core group (Martha, Harry, Andrew, and Racey) with whom I was working began to go our separate ways. It was a natural progression away from our steady schedule, and one that would eventually yield some opportunities in coming years, and it is a great thing for me to have five or six sessions worth of product from that time. I found that I had a harder time than I anticipated while selecting the material for this album, and it is with a sense of fond nostalgia that I can present these pieces to you.
300lb Canary, Beacon Street, Sound Check, Rainy Afternoon, Evolution, & Heart of the Matter
Bob Thornton (piano), Andrew Korbel (bass), Mike Klova (drums)
Little Things & Questioning
Martha Michael (trumpet), Harry Gould (guitar), Andrew Korbel (bass), Racey Gilbert (drums)
V'lo Irah ("and I am not afraid")
Martha Michael (trumpet), Jeremy Dyen (piano), Andrew Korbel (bass), Joe McCormack (drums), Bill Phipps (Percussion)