Released last month, just in time for Valentine's Day, Harry Watters' collection of love songs rings true and faithful to the cause. He improvises over each trusted melody and fashions its meaning to suit his needs.
A thorough background in both traditional and modern jazz has prepared the trombonist well. He served as graduate assistant to Professor Ellis Marsalis at the University of New Orleans, and he currently serves with both the Army Blues Jazz Ensemble and the United States Army Brass Quintet.
Slow ballads such as "Angel Eyes" and "My One and Only Love" provide mood music for all eternity. Watters' buttery tone and fluid technique allow these precious melodies to roll off the page in graceful, confident strides. The full force of his trombone tone delivers a knockout blow.
Bassist Glenn Dewey adds delectable solo spots to the slower, romantic ballads. The deep pitch of his instrument fits in nicely with the quartet's smooth sounds. Watters seems to draw his strength from the compositions themselves as he builds each piece forcefully and emotionally into a passionate bundle.
It's difficult to pick a high point from Watters' album, since every track stands out with special qualities. The trombonist has laced variety into his program in such a way that we're treated to a new page with each song. "You Stepped Out of a Dream" rambles up-tempo with extensive trombone and bass improvisation. "Am I Blue?" oozes passionately with deep feeling. "When My Dreamboat Comes Along" shuffles along happily in celebration of the spirit that drives us. Out of a Dream: Love Songs comes highly recommended for all jazz lovers.
I was first exposed to jazz when I discovered that one of Jimi Hendrix's influences was Wes Montgomery. I played guitar growing up and idolized Hendrix, so I knew that anyone he looked up to must be good
I was first exposed to jazz when I discovered that one of Jimi Hendrix's influences was Wes Montgomery. I played guitar growing up and idolized Hendrix, so I knew that anyone he looked up to must be good. I was 16 at the time. I went to Tower Records and purchased a CD by Wes, and I was hooked from the very first ten seconds. The sound of the song Lolita illuminated my bedroom, as I just sat back amazed at how colorful and soulful this music was--I understood it, even though at the time I didn't understand how to go about playing it. I get chills listening to Wes' solo on Lolita, and I can still listen to that song ten times in a row and never get tired of it. There is a truly timeless quality to genuinely spontaneous jazz music, and it is that quality that has inspired me to devote my life to studying and playing this music.