Winner of the 2007 NAR Lifestyle Music Awards (NewAgeReporter.com) for:
ALBUM OF THE YEAR and BEST CONTEMPORARY INSTRUMENTAL ALBUM
"The creation and playing of music should be a wonderous expression of the truth, a shining glimpse of the human heart in joy or pain.
There is an innocence to this; at least there should be. Jeff Oster writes and plays music like a child feels sunlight. There's no ego, no artifice; just the truth.
There have been a million recordings of horn players, some of them utterly brilliant, but in all these recordings there has never been anyone who incorporates so many influences or blurs genres or traditions as gracefully as Jeff Oster does. The elements are familiar, but the synthesis is unique.
This is a milestone recording."
Windham County, VT
"I have recorded many of the world's greatest trumpet and flugelhorn players. In fact, some of the most important that music has to offer.
So of course I thought that I had heard all that the flugelhorn and trumpet had to say musically.
That was before I had heard and mixed Jeff Oster's wonderful music.
Talk about tone, intonation, phrasing and all things wonderful about the instrument,
Jeff has it all...
Listen to this fabulous music with open ears and open hearts, please..."
TRUE - the stunning new release from award-winning chilled jazz trumpet/flugelhorn artist Jeff Oster.
Think Miles Davis meets Enya...
TRUE was recorded in Vermont at Imaginary Road Studios, with Grammy Award winners Will Ackerman producing, and Corin Nelsen at the board.
Jeff's new CD features world class performances from:
Keith Carlock (Steely Dan, Sting) - drums
T. Bone Wolk (Hall and Oates, Carly Simon)- bass and guitar
Michael Manring - fretless bass
Eugene Friesen (Paul Winter Consort) - cello
Philip Aaberg (Peter Gabriel, Elvin Bishop) - piano,synthesizer
Jan Pulsford (Cyndie Lauper,Chico Freeman) - synthesizer, drum programming
Samite - vocals and mbira
Melissa R. Kaplan (Splashdown, Universal Hall Pass) -vocals
Patrick Gorman - guitar
Noah Wilding - vocals
Derrik Jordan - percussion
Will Ackerman - guitar
TRUE features music composed and arranged by Jeff Oster, working with co-writers Jan Pulsford (she's composed and performed with Cyndie Lauper, the Thompson Twins and Chico Freeman), Will Ackerman (Grammy Award winning guitarist/producer and founder of Windham Hill Records), Patrick Gorman and Samite.
This is a must listen for anyone who enjoys music that stirs the soul and touches the heart.
As you listen, imagine...
It was exactly two years ago that Jeff Oster's debut album, Released, was picked as an Echoes CD of the Month. For his second album, the fluegelhorn and trumpet player expands and goes beyond the themes of that album. Co-produced again with guitarist and Windham Hill founder, Will Ackerman, True maintains many of the characteristics of Released with sophisticated electronic looping, harmonized and multi-tracked fluegelhorn lines and textured, ambient arrangements.
The opening track "Saturn Calling" sets the pace with a quietly heroic, surging groove that alternates with pensive, wind blown fluegelhorn cries. After the ambient loops and textures of his first album, you can hear Oster's jazz fusion and progressive rock tendencies leaking out. From the opening track, you can hear the jazz voicings in his harmonized trumpet lines, but the loops and delayed U2/The Edge guitar sets a mood you won't find in jazz.
There are some gorgeous arrangements like "Violet," which features Patrick Gorman (sounding remarkably like Will Ackerman) on acoustic guitar, while also playing electric guitar textures. With swirling cello from Eugene Friesen and one of those open plains piano breaks by Philip Aaberg it's a plangent elegy topped by Oster's yearning horn.
A couple of tracks take the smooth jazz slide, notably "Serengeti" with its cool lounge rhythm, but it’s redeemed by one of Samite's transcendent vocal choirs. I would not have put the funky "Once In A Blue Moonlight," with its R&B wordless testifying vocal from Melissa R. Kaplan, on this album, but a trio with Ackerman and Aaberg, the ruminative "On One Knee," gently gets the album back on track.
With its illusory edges and blurring of electric and acoustic textures, much of which is provided by sound designer Brian Carrigan, True is deftly sequenced. It accommodates dark film noir moods on "This Place" along with the jubilant, uplifting "Mumbai," a triumphant ode with a surging drum loop, Kaplan's wailing wordless vocals and Oster's clarion fluegelhorn cries sounding the charge.
Jeff Oster has been true to the promise of his debut album and True is our Echoes CD of the Month for September.
- © 2007 John Diliberto