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CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Ernie Watts: A Simple Truth

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The title of Ernie Watt's seventh release on his Flying Dolphin label reflects the tenor great's guiding philosophy, as he explained in a recent interview for dublinjazz.ie: “We are creating our reality all day every day by the thoughts that we think and by the things that we say and by our belief systems. It's a very clear and simple path." For Watts, this path has translated, on average, into two hours practice virtually every day for the past fifty three years. Such dedication to his art is clear every time Watts plays and prompted journalist Nat Hentoff to speak ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Ernie Watts Quartet: Oasis

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Setting up Flying Dolphin Records in 2004 has given tenor saxophonist Ernie Watts wings. After 35 years calling on an ever-changing array of some of the greatest names in jazz to play on his records, Watts has now settled into two quartets: his American and European groups. The continuity of these ensembles and the complete artistic freedom that he's wrestled free have resulted in some of his strongest recordings. Four Plus Four (Flying Dolphin Records, 2009), To the Point-Live at the Jazz Bakery (Flying Dolphin Records, 2008), Spirit Song (Flying Dolphin Records, 2005), and Analog Man (Flying Dolphin Records, 2007)--winner ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Ernie Watts: Bangkok, Thailand, June 18, 2011

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Ernie WattsThe Living RoomSheraton Grande HotelBangkok, ThailandJune 18, 2011 It's been celebration time this past month at The Living Room in the Sheraton Grande Hotel--Bangkok's best jazz venue--as it celebrates 10 years of hosting concerts. Veteran tenor saxophonist Ernie Watts provided the main highlight, serving up serious musical muscle for four nights, with long-time musical collaborator Jeremy Monteiro on piano, drummer Shawn Kelley and bassist Christy Smith making up a potent, swinging quartet. This acoustically warm, embracing venue provided high quality international jazz of a mostly regional face, almost nightly for four ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Ernie Watts, Jeremy Monteiro & Organamix: Chamber at the Arts House, Singapore

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Ernie Watts, Jeremy Monteiro & OrganamixChamber at the Arts HouseSingaporeJuly 31, 2010 As Jeremy Monteiro's composition “One People, One Nation, One Singapore" filled the air, jet planes roared at supersonic speed overhead followed by formations of helicopters. Armored personnel carriers and tanks rolled down the streets and fireworks filled the sky. This is not a typical set-up for a Monteiro gig. It had been his fiftieth birthday celebration recently and sax legend Ernie Watts was in town--both reasons to celebrate--but no, this was a dry run for the upcoming Singapore National Day--Singapore takes its ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Ernie Watts: To The Point - Live at the Jazz Bakery

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Recorded live at the Jazz Bakery in Los Angeles, To The Point is the first non-studio recording of Ernie Watts' longtime quartet. Together for over 20 years, they have a cohesion and musical empathy that is palpable. The musically eclectic Watts has toured with The Rolling Stones and played in settings from Carmen McRae to Jean-Luc Ponty. A Grammy winner for his performance on the soundtrack of Chariots of Fire (1981), Watts is best known for his work with bassist Charlie Haden's Quartet West. This set showcases Watts as a composer (all but two of tunes are his own) and ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Ernie Watts: To the Point - Live at the Jazz Bakery

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Ernie WattsTo The Point - Live At The Jazz BakeryFlying Dolphin Records2008

After hearing saxophonist Ernie Watts' CD To The Point - Live At The Jazz Bakey , it's easy to imagine that he possesses superhuman talents similar to those held by members of the fictional Fantastic Four. He breathes fire, can cool with ice, whip up a storm, and shape his sax sound in ways otherworldly. This is a powerful, yet sensitive, technically Herculean, yet human, complex yet elegantly beautiful player--no, a marvel.

Soloing as an intro to the ...

INTERVIEWS

Ernie Watts: Flying High

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Very few musicians have a resume quite as varied or as impressive as saxophonist Ernie Watts. His musical curiosity and tremendous versatility have led him to perform in contexts as diverse as a TV show band, with orchestras, on small and big screen soundtracks, on over five hundred recording sessions which include many of the greatest names in Motown, in duo and in quartet settings as well as in a number of the most distinguished big bands in modern jazz history.

Over the years, the likes of Thelonious Monk, James Brown, The Rolling Stones, Frank Zappa, ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Ernie Watts Quartet: Analog Man

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The opening two-note piano riff, the crisp rim shots from the drums and the walking bass line on the opening number and title track get Analog Man off to the most swinging of starts. Saxophonist Ernie Watts introduces the melody and proceeds to craft a solo so full of invention, strength and lyricism that when he lays out to allow pianist Christof Saenger his turn the surprise is that only three minutes have passed.

Watts' playing on “Analog Man is fluid and elegant and he raises the bar high for the musicians in his quartet. First pianist Saenger ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Ernie Watts at The Living Room

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Ernie Watts, Jeremy Monteiro, Belinda Moody, Shawn Kelley.

The Living Room Sheraton Grande Bangkok

12 June 2006

A saxophone that beautiful, black, embossed in gold leaf, and whose bell seemed to radiate golden light, is made to produce the finest of music. For that, it should be in the hands of a master craftsman and tonight it was. In Ernie Watts, it couldn't have had a better conduit for communication with the audience.

Backed by The Living Room's house band of Jeremy Monteiro on piano, Belinda Moody on bass and Shawn Kelley on drums, seasoned professionals all, Watts ...

MULTIPLE REVIEWS

Spirit Song; Cityscape

Ernie Watts Spirit Song Flying Dolphin 2006

Ernie Watts radiates such warmth and lyricism throughout Spirit Song that even a fast-paced, angular tune like “ASFEW ('A Song for Ernie Watts'), where his keening upper register is on display, ends up singing. While he's an ebullient, energetic player, Watts does not sound hurried or frenetic. It would be remiss not to mention that the spirit of John Coltrane hovers around this date, but this influence does not manifest itself as mere imitation. “When I first heard John Coltrane play, muses Watts, “it ...



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