Shimon Ben-Shir Group | WAYS

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United States - Massachusetts

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Jazz: World Fusion World: South American Moods: Instrumental
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by Shimon Ben-Shir Group

A highly unique soundscape that blends jazz with Middle Eastern and South American influences. touches on the canon of cultures that the Shimon Ben-Shir Group encompasses in their playing. The Groups compositions are warm, lyrical, inviting and memorable.
Genre: Jazz: World Fusion
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Ways
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4:38 $0.89
2. Jochebed
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6:49 $0.89
3. Happiness
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4:32 $0.89
4. Four Score
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6:50 $0.89
5. Do It
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5:51 $0.89
6. Gliding
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6:14 $0.89
7. Orange Sky
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4:15 $0.89
8. Circle
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5:31 $0.89
Available as MP3, MP3 320, and FLAC files.


Album Notes
Ways, the second album from the Shimon Ben-Shir Group, is like encountering a friend you haven’t seen for a while. You instantly recognize the voice and the face and eagerly make plans to catch up and hear tales of adventure. Bassist, composer and producer Shimon Ben-Shir and the Group come to your stereo ready to open their collective travel journal and share their tales through the eight individually original and highly unique compositions that comprise Ways.


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The Shimon Ben-Shir Group delivers a world-class performance
"Ways", the title track opens up with the elegant voice of Milstein's flute backed up by strong bass line work from Ben-Shir and supported by Wernick's sax phrasings in an obviously worldly but beautiful tune. The leader introduces the following track, "Jochebed," later engaged by trumpeter John Frazee in a rather melancholy Middle Eastern-tinged sounding number.The tunes "Do It," "Gliding," and "Orange Sky," while very different in melodic styles, all seem to fall within the world jazz theme of the album. There are two tracks however that break from the theme and can be considered straight jazz. "Four Score," is a burner of a track showcasing an outstanding performance from Duncan Martin on the alto and Fischer on the piano.Ben-Shir saves the best for last in the melodic-rich Latin style rhythms of "Circle," containing a stylish Ben-Shir bass solo, Martin's tenor phrasings, and a lively percussive beat provided by Jody Bregler on the drums. The conclusion, The Shimon Ben-Shir Group delivers a world-class performance in a compelling session of world jazz rhythms that will appeal to the jazz aficionado and average jazz audience alike. A definite thumbs up from this jazz critic.

John Book, Music For America

Great music, played for the sake of beautiful jazz unity
The bio for Ways (Ben-Shir Music) says the album is like encountering a friend you haven’t seen for a while. While I had never heard of The Shimon Ben-Shir Group before, their brand of laid back jazz does sound familiar and warm, but not too lazy to where it becomes smooth jazz. The core of the music is Ben-Shir's bass work, where he goes back and forth between fretless and fretted, and he surrounds himself with an incredible range of musicians who fortunately know what they're doing. A piece such as "Jochebed" shows how diverse his music can be, where the meat of the song (the melody) sounds beautiful like a Pat Metheny song, but the soloists add their own flavor, especially trumpeter John Frazee. When he plays, he adds a bit of color to an already vibrant portrait, and in a way sets himself from the rest for about a minute before moving away and allowing everyone else to play.

Everything on this album is fairly mellow, nothing excessive or out of the ordinary. While some of these songs could appeal to smooth jazz fans, there's a bit more going on than the usual. One can say that Ways is jazz on cruise control, moving the seat back and letting things come as they may, but Ben-Shir pushes himself and everyone to do their best, and they all play for the sake of beautiful jazz unity.

Improvijazzation Nation

Once you pop it in the tray & begin spinning the title track you'll find yoursel
This CD is pure joy to listen to, whether you're a hard-core jazz fan, or only a casual passer-by. The brilliant splashes of color on the CD jacket give you an indicator of the life contained in the music, but once you pop it in the tray & begin spinning the title track (which opens the experience), you'll find yourself fully engaged & enchanted. Ben-Shir's bass (and guitar) talents are fully revealed on the second cut, "Jochebed"... it's a bit hard to describe, as there are solid rhythmic foundations in the Middle East, but then John Frazee's horn kicks in, & you feel like you're in th' middle of the Caribbean somewhere. Itemizing each of the pieces would be like "giving the secret away", and you wouldn't want that - it would be like telling the end of a movie... and, that's what this beautiful musical experience reminds me of... a well-crafted tale that invokes memories seated deep in your psyche, bringing each of the emotions you experienced back in new ways. Absolutely stunning jazz, nothing pretentious, & very enjoyable. I especially enjoyed the highly energetic "Four Score", the "deepest" jazz cut on the album. I've no doubt that listening to these folks in a live setting would make you come away ready to overcome all the evil in the universe. I give it a MOST HIGHLY RECOMMEND


fan ,
I have been a fan of jazz all my life as well as followed the drummer over the last 25 years and this is his best work Yet !! great c.d. we all love it. we are left wanting more .