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INTERVIEW

Gary Willis: Something to Say

Read "Gary Willis: Something to Say" reviewed by Ian Patterson

Sixteen years in Tribal Tech, the most innovative of post-Weather Report fusion bands, confirmed the status of Gary Willis as a modern-day bass icon. Picking up where Jaco Pastorius left off, Willis's explorations are stretching the possibilities of the fretless bass as a lead instrument, as evidenced on two 2007 releases, the storming Slaughterhouse 3 and his third solo album, Actual Fiction--a bass album unlike any other--both on Abstract Logix.In a revealing interview Willis lends insight into his ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Gary Willis: Actual Fiction

Read "Actual Fiction" reviewed by John Kelman

As co-founder, with guitarist Scott Henderson, of now-defunct fusion group Tribal Tech, bassist Gary Willis has never been averse to technology. By the time the group released its eponymous fourth album in 1991, there were times when it was nearly impossible to tell who was doing what. With the exception of drummers Kirk Covington (ex-Tribal Tech) and David Gomez on seven of its ten tracks, Willis goes it completely alone on Actual Fiction, an album of monster chops, penetrating grooves, ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Gary Willis: Actual Fiction

Read "Actual Fiction" reviewed by Ian Patterson

One might be forgiven for thinking that bassist extraordinaire Gary Willis has the titles of the first two songs on Actual Fiction the wrong way round. “Cartoon Fetish is a slightly frantic drum 'n' bass rave with a Prodigy-like bullishness that would be ideal to rock a party and rattle your neighbors' windows. The wonderfully titled “Smells Like a Party is an irresistible piece of head-bobbing funk of the type Prince cooks up, and would make a great soundtrack for ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Gary Willis/Kirk Covington/Llibert Fortuny: Slaughterhouse 3

Read "Slaughterhouse 3" reviewed by Ian Patterson

The musical collaboration between bassist Gary Willis and drummer Kirk Covington goes back a long way, to college bands and later with jazz/fusion band Tribal Tech. Over twenty-five years later (and seven years after the demise of Tribal Tech) the two musicians are still creating great rhythms together on Slaughterhouse 3.. Joined by adventurous Spanish saxophonist Llibert Fortuny, the trio has made an album of powerful grooves which falls outside conventional categorization, yet which remains wholly accessible.

The ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Gary Willis / Llibert Fortuny / Kirk Covington: Slaughterhouse 3

Read "Slaughterhouse 3" reviewed by John Kelman

Anyone familiar with electric bassist Gary Willis (co-founder of the powerhouse fusion outfit Tribal Tech) and drummer Kirk Covington (a longtime member of that same group) will know that any saxophone trio they're involved with will be far removed from convention. Add saxophonist Llibert Fortuny, a rising star on the Spanish jazz scene, and the result is Slaughterhouse 3, an energized, take-no-prisoners album that, with its combination of potent grooves, wild electronics and freewheeling improvisation, will appeal equally to fans ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Gary Willis: Bent

Read "Bent" reviewed by John W. Patterson

Gary Willis presents nine jazzy and funkified pieces all his own and two he co-wrote with bandmates. The personnel here are Tribal Tech's bassist Willis, Scott Kinsey on keys, and Kirk Covington drumming on two tracks. Dennis Chambers provides sweet drums on eight tracks. Reeds are Steve Tavaglione wailing on EWI, (electronic wind instrument), tenor and soprano sax and clarinet. Bob Berg also guests playing one mean tenor sax on three tracks.Imagine Tribal Tech with no Scott Henderson ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Gary Willis: Gary Willis

Read "Gary Willis" reviewed by Ed Kopp

Tribal Tech co-founder Gary Willis garnered widespread critical acclaim for his 1996 solo debut No Sweat, a release that I found easy to admire but hard to love. I've grown to love Bent, the second solo effort from the talented Texas bassist. Willis takes groove music to another level on this funky and intricate CD. Bent is a bit less dissonant and far more vigorous than its predecessor. Nine of these 11 tracks feature fat funky bottoms, hard-bopping ...


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