Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

4

Kobie Watkins: Movement

K. Shackelford By

Sign in to view read count
Solidifying a musical 'voice' could take five years, or it could take 15 years. Yet when an artist's 'voice' or style comes, well, you just know it. The result is work with musical moves that are distinctive and ideas that are au courant. Drummer/Composer/Bandleader Kobie Watkins' voice resounds with artistic certainty and savoir faire on his second album entitled Movement (Origin Records, 2018), featuring the Kobie Watkins Grouptet.

Watkins, a Chicago native, has toured and recorded as a drummer with a number of noteworthy musicians such as Sonny Rollins, Bobby Broom, Kurt Elling, Branford Marsalis, Joe Lovano, and Ryan Cohen. A graduate of Vandercook College of Music, Watkins also travels nationwide as an educator where he shares his wisdom with "eager to learn" young musicians. A completely non-acroamatic instructor, Watkins recently released his first book A Drum Book, which seeks to provide key drum approaches to beginning and advanced drummers. Movement is very different from his first album, Involved (Origin Records), released in 2006.

Upon listening to all the tracks on Movement one fact can be quickly concluded---it is not an album that revolves solely on Watkins' drum performances. While the album showcases the stylistic versatility and rhythmic cleverness of Watkins on each track, this album seems centered on Watkins' compositions.

There are no blurry and undeveloped ideas here. No novices on this recording. What is clearly illuminated on this recording is the collective giftedness of his band, and Watkins' capability as a bandleader. Watkins composed all the melodies and arranged the parts for each instrument on Movement. Presenting tightly sewn musical seams on each track, the accomplished and seasoned band on this album pull out the beauty of Watkins' compositions with great fortitude, musical expression, and technical clarity. The Kobie Watkins Grouptet includes: Kobie Watkins (drums), Justin Nielsen (piano), Ryan Nielsen (trumpet), Jonathan Armstrong (saxophone), and Aaron Miller (bass).

The track "Movement," which is also the album's name, is synonymous with what happens musically within the piece. It begins with a festive Latin themed duet showcasing two pristine talents---Ryan Nielsen on flugel horn and Jonathan Armstrong on saxophone. Yet then a surprising detour happens. The composition moves into a less-Latin, more modern, yet gorgeous unaccompanied piano solo by pianist Justin Nielsen. Watkins joins in a little later in the piano solo with some flavorful and tight comping. The piece ends with a technically savvy drum solo by Watkins.

"Prayer for Peace," the album's first track is a palliative and consolatory opener, where restraint and musical space begins and blooms into a stunning ballad.

Another slower track that exudes the band's opulent chemistry is "Six Moods" that presents sweet brass conversations over sophisticated chord structures---backed by a careful rhythm section. On "The City" you'll find Aaron Miller grounding the piece with excellent bass work. This ten track album won't disappoint.

Track Listing: Movement; Prayer for Peace; Catch The City; Six Moods; Ga-Rum-Ban; Inner Motion; Rivet; MBDC; Falling Upward; Manteca.

Personnel: Kobie Watkins: drums; Justin Nielsen: piano; Ryan Nielsen: trumpet; Jonathan Armstrong: saxophone; bassist: Aaron Miller.

Title: Movement | Year Released: 2018 | Record Label: Origin Records

Tags

Watch

comments powered by Disqus

The City

The City

Kobie Watkins
Movement

Album Reviews
Interviews
Album Reviews
Read more articles
Movement

Movement

Origin Records
2018

buy
Involved

Involved

Origin Records
2009

buy

Shop

Start your shopping here and you'll support All About Jazz in the process. Learn how.

Related Articles

Read Duologue Album Reviews
Duologue
By Dan Bilawsky
January 17, 2019
Read Showing Up Album Reviews
Showing Up
By Nicholas F. Mondello
January 17, 2019
Read Chez Hélène Album Reviews
Chez Hélène
By Glenn Astarita
January 17, 2019
Read Original Demos Album Reviews
Original Demos
By Chris M. Slawecki
January 17, 2019
Read Fred Hersch Trio '97 @ The Village Vanguard Album Reviews
Fred Hersch Trio '97 @ The Village Vanguard
By Mark Sullivan
January 16, 2019
Read SJZ Collective Reimagines Monk Album Reviews
SJZ Collective Reimagines Monk
By Doug Collette
January 16, 2019
Read Swingin' In Seattle, Live At The Penthouse 1966-1967 Album Reviews
Swingin' In Seattle, Live At The Penthouse 1966-1967
By Mike Jurkovic
January 16, 2019