All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. Pay $20 and we'll hide those six pesky Google ads that appear on every page, plus this box and the slideout box on the right for a full year! You'll also fund website expansion.
I have to admit that I lost track of guitarist Frank Gambale over the years. His sound jumped out at me for the first time on the Chick Corea Elektric Band's Inside Out (GRP Records, '90). That disc—which I suppose falls into the fusion category—is a minor classic; and Gambale's contribution—borne out by a fresh listen with more experienced ears—is considerable, especially in the harmonics department. Which makes Raison D'être all the more intriguing, since the guitarist has taken his keyboard-like chording into uncharted territory with his patented Nouveau Tuning.
I can't say I understand the technicalities; perhaps only Frank Gambale does; but the sound is fresh and luminous, always shimmerings and clean in front of Bill Cobham's distinctively vibrant precision drum work. Gambale employs both his new tuning and the traditional one, painting a keyboard/synthesizer-like glow behind his always crisp soloing. Several of the pieces on this new set have the lush, full sound, rendered by the two guitar tunings, with just bass and drum accompaniment, for a sort of beautifully back to basics fusion sound.
I haven't paid attention to Frank Gambale for the past decade and a half, but Raison D'être tells me I missed out on some good sounds along the way.
I love jazz because it mixes intellect and emotion in a very spontaneous way.
I was first exposed to jazz by liberating a Coltrane and a Pharoah Sanders record from a friend in NYC and listening to them over and over until I got it.
My advice to new listeners is you have to take the time to listen to some jazz tunes a number of times until it starts to make sense.