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William Flynn: Traveler

Mark Sullivan By

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Wichita-based guitarist, composer and educator (Professor of Jazz Guitar at Wichita State University) William Flynn presents a brief program of evocative originals, accompanied by his quartet with pianist Addison Frei, double bassist Young Heo and drummer Matt Young. The mention of Wichita inevitably recalls the title of the Pat Metheny/Lyle Mays composition (and album) "As Falls Wichita, So Falls Wichita Falls." In this case it is an apt comparison, as Flynn's music shares similar bucolic atmosphere and song-like melodicism.

"Prologue" begins the set with a slow fade-in before setting an atmosphere evoking wide-open spaces. The title tune is especially melodic—Flynn's composing and playing are both generally characterized by melodicism—and features a complementary piano solo. Flynn takes up an acoustic guitar for "Begin Again," which also finds space for a lovely bass solo. Most of the program takes place at more of a simmer than a boil, but "Awakening" still stands out as a lyrical ballad. The closer "Home" is one of the few places where Flynn overdubs a rhythm guitar. His statement of the theme is echoed by Frei's piano before the guitar returns with a more energetic exploration.

At just over thirty-three minutes the album is almost an EP by contemporary standards. But it makes an impression in its easy-going, harmonious way. Nothing overstays its welcome. There is definitely room for expansion for both the band and the format.

Track Listing: Prologue; Traveler; Warrior; Begin Again; Agitate; Awakening; Home.

Personnel: William Flynn: guitar; Addison Frei: piano; Young Heo: bass; Matt Young: drums.

Title: Traveler | Year Released: 2017 | Record Label: Artists Recording Collective

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