James Weidman | All About Time

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Jazz: Piano Jazz Jazz: Hard Bop Moods: Featuring Piano
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All About Time

by James Weidman

Traditional Jazz Combo/Bebop Music in solo, trio, quartet setting with vocals added on two of the tracks.
Genre: Jazz: Piano Jazz
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Bean and the Boys
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6:25 $0.99
2. Memories of You
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6:12 $0.99
3. Mr. Johnston
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4:22 $0.99
4. Song for Kim
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6:14 $0.99
5. 2K Blues
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4:28 $0.99
6. Lord Don't Move That Mountain
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7:27 $0.99
7. Ugly Beauty
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4:09 $0.99
8. Where Is Love
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7:51 $0.99
9. Love's in the Making
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3:48 $0.99
10. Song for Tomorrow
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5:15 $0.99
Available as MP3, MP3 320, and FLAC files.


Album Notes

Described by New York Times jazz critic Nate Chinen as "a pianist with a broad résumé and a graceful style", James Weidman decorates a song like many decorate the favorite room in their house—one carefully-chosen piece at a time. As one of the world's top side man, he has played and recorded with musicians as diverse as Joe Lovano, Steve Coleman, Sonny Stitt, and Jay Hoggard.

He has also been the accompanist of choice for some of the world's most celebrated singers, including legendary jazz vocalist Abbey Lincoln and Cassandra Wilson. Clearly, Weidman -- described by jazz critic Ben Ratliff as playing "smoothly and decorously" behind Lincoln at a recent reunion concert -- is one those rare accompanists to whom singers feel it is safe to give free rein.James is also a gifted teacher, and currently works with aspiring musicians at William Paterson University. With the release of his second solo album, appropriately entitled "All About Time",Weidman looks set to strut his stuff and take his place among the world's top bandleaders.

"When I first moved here, someone said to me: 'Be careful in New York. They'll typecast you!'" laughs Weidman, whose incredible versatility -- developed over 30 years of working in a myriad of styles -- has made that impossible. "The more genres you are comfortable with, the deeper your understanding of music," he asserts. It has helped Weidman to develop his amazing technique and, as he imparts to his students (he is a faculty member at William Paterson, New Jersey), "the better your technique, the better your communication." However, the content of the communication is the most important thing. "You're really telling a story to your audience," he says. "It's a shared journey. That's why I called my first solo album People Music, because we are all supposed to share this music."

A native of Youngstown, Ohio, Weidman was born into a musical family and first learned to play jazz from his father (a saxophonist and bandleader) at the age of seven. "He taught me some of the songs he played in the band," says Weidman. By the time he was 13 he was playing organ in his father's jazz band. "We played the chittlin's circuit," he says. Throughout his years at Youngstown University (he graduated cum laude with a degree in classical and jazz piano), Weidman continued to divide his time between his studies and performing in local jazz bands, gradually becoming one of the best players in town.

Moving to New York, the jazz Mecca of the world, was inevitable. "Someone told me that I could get work there as long as I had an electric piano," says Weidman, who packed up his Fender and set off for the city. Almost immediately, he found himself playing with jazz greats Cecil Payne, Harold Ousley, Bobby Watson and Pepper Adams, before falling in with Steve Coleman. "I really wanted to play with Steve because he was doing something new," says Weidman. "His compositions force you to think differently and playing his very demanding rhythms and harmonies is really challenging. That was exactly what I wanted. It gave me a freer outlook on music." Indeed, challenging himself musically continues to be very important to Weidman. "I used to play with this older cat in Brooklyn and at the end of every gig he would turn to me and say: 'Well, I learned something!'"

Weidman has perhaps learned the most with his long term collaborator, highly acclaimed saxophonist TK Blue, who is also Randy Weston's musical director. "When I first met TK in 1978 we were both writing and our band was like a workshop. It was a great laboratory for both of us in terms of trying out our ideas. And we still constantly challenge each other," says Weidman. "But our playing together nowadays is more about intuition than notes," he says. "TK is much more than just a fellow musician. He's a spiritual brother. And it takes that learning process to a whole other level," says Weidman. To hear them together is to be made intensely aware of Weidman's most important music lesson: It's the story that counts. "I've never forgotten my father's advice the first time I ever played with him. 'Keep the time, stay out of the way, and tell a story.'"

Weidman has performed at the world's major venues and festivals, including the Montreux, Monterey, Newport, North Sea and JVC Jazz Festivals, Carnegie Hall, Birdland, Blue Note, Sweet Basil, Village Vanguard, Iridium and Jazz Standard.


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Jeff Rivers (Hartford Courant)

Weidman's lyrical and soulful playing shines, whether he's part of the full ense
Pianist James Weidman is an accomplished yet unsung jazz performer. As a sideman, he's played with such singers as Cassandra Wilson and Abbey Lincoln.

His versatile and engaging keyboard work stood out on Jay Hoggard's "The Right Place" on JHVM records.

Hoggard, a hard-swinging, lyrical vibraphonist, returns the favor on Weidman's Contour release "All About Time."

Bassist Ed Howard, drummer Marcus Baylor and singer Charene Dawn join Weidman on a disc on which Weidman's lyrical and soulful playing shines, whether he's part of the full ensemble ("Memories of You") or solo, as on Monk's "Ugly Beauty."

The sure-footed set of standards and originals closes with Weidman's "Song for Tomorrow," a serene recessional.

Erica Bowman

Jmes Weidman be jamming!
Bean and the Boys is an excellent opening number for the All About Time CD by James Weidman. The selection let's the listener know right from the start James Weidman will be jamming! Bean and the Boys as well as the other 8 cuts on the CD are wonderful examples of his artistry on the piano. Including vocalist Charene Dawn on cuts 2 & 9 adds a vibrant warmth to the CD. There isn't a missed note in any of the selections, so you must have this CD as part of your collection and growing catalog on James Weidman.