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Jazz/rock guitarist bobbywayne’s (no, that’s not a typo) latest CD [we’ll see] is a mix of “smooth jazz” vibes and some tasty electric guitar work by the veteran axeman. It is also a case in point as to why electronic drums and drum machines should all be collected and cast into the eternal pit of fiery damnation, as they all but ruin what could have been a nice effort by “the musician voted most likely to eschew capital letters,” bobbywayne.
The CD starts off with “Hwy 17,” which is an excellent acoustic fusion piece featuring Indian-influenced percussion and guitar riffs accompanied by a very airy chorus that adds up to a very relaxing vibe. Unfortunately, this is the best cut on the album and it’s pretty much all downhill from here. “Snakespeare” (no, that’s not a type either) sounds like a pre-programmed Casio sample peppered with electric guitar work. “Got No Ice Cream” suffers from some awful keyboard work, and “NeatMoe” sounds more like lounge music than fusion.
That’s not to say that bobbywayne isn’t a talented guitarist – he shows a lot of ability to switch from style to style, and does manage to keep the guitar playing on the album quite interesting. The track “Street Legal” features an excellent guitar jam, and “Sex Machine” has some great discordant moments that really bring the song to life. However, Jimi Hendrix himself couldn’t overcome the electronic/pre-programmed drum tracks that suck the life out of most of the tracks on [we’ll see]. In the end, the amateurish sound of the percussion makes it very hard to concentrate on bobbywayne’s very capable guitar and bass playing, which I think was supposed to be the main attraction of this release.
Basically, if he decides to hire a proper drummer for his next effort, I think bobbywayne could carve a nice niche in the smooth-jazz/fusion genre. His guitar playing is very good, and he shows much promise in the songwriting area with tracks such as “Hwy 17” and “Sex Machine”. However, [we’ll see] is just too bogged down with subpar keyboard work and poorly done electronic drums to rate as an enjoyable experience.
Track Listing: : 1. Hwy 17 (2:45), 2. Time Travel (3:25), 3. Snakespeare (4:22), 4. Got No Ice Cream (2:43), 5. Sex Machine (3:30), 6. Reckless Truth (1:59), 7. eLectroglide (4:00), 8. Street Legal (3:39), 9. Clocktower (1:17), 10. NeatMoe (3:17), 11. Temple (2:11)
More information on bobbywayne can be found at http://www.mp3.com/bobbywayne
I love jazz because anything is possible; it has few rules and the best jazz breaks those ones. I prefer free improv because it doesn't really have any rules at all.
I was first exposed to jazz in my teens (in the late sixties).
The first jazz record I bought was Filles de Kilimanjaro by Miles Davis, shortly followed by Extrapolation by John McLaughlin.
My advice to new listeners is to listen as widely as possible and not to make snap judgments--stick with it.