Welcome to the home page of guitarist Steve Khan!
CDs AVAILABLE @ Amazon.com!!! "PATCHWORK" is the title of Steve's new recording, and there is, of course, a subtitle in Spanish, "Medio Mezclado." This new recording represents the 4th in a series where Steve continues to enhance the role of the guitar in the context of Latin music and Latin Jazz.
Once again, the core group features: Rob Mounsey (Keys & Orchestrations); Rubén Rodríguez (Baby Bass & Elec. Bass), Bobby Allende (Conga), Marc Quiñones (Timbal, Bongó & Perc.), and the great Dennis Chambers (Drums) The guest artists should be familiar to all those who have followed these albums, and their contributions were immense, they include: Randy Brecker (Flügelhorn); Bob Mintzer (Tenor Sax) and Tatiana Parra (Voice). For the first time, composer and keyboard artist Jorge Estrada appears on his own composition, "Huracán Clare" which is, of course, dedicated to the wondrous Clare Fischer.
In all, they perform Steve's arrangements of compositions by: Thelonious Monk, "Epistrophy"; Ornette Coleman, "C. & D." and "T. & T."; Joe Henderson, "A Shade of Jade"; Bobby Hutcherson, "Bouquet"; and Keith Jarrett's "The Journey Home." As always, the recording features a gorgeous ballad: "Too Late Now" written by Alan Jay Lerner and Burton Lane. This time, there is a "BONUS TRACK" for downloads only, a spectacular interpretation of Eden Ahbez' "Nature Boy" which features the beautiful voice of Tatiana Parra.
The music was recorded by James Farber at Sear Sound Studios on March 18th-19th, 2019. Michel Granger's beautiful images grace the cover, and gives this 4th album in the series its own unique look. Now, you are seeing what the real CD cover, designed by the super-talented Janet Perr will look like.
As it is with any recording, there is always a story of just how this all came to be. If you are remotely interested, please go to the NEWS and read further.
For those of you who have stayed with Steve for all these years, especially since 2011, please know how very, very grateful he remains for your support and words of encouragement. Thank you all so much!!!
JUST PUBLISHED!(8/14/20): A new AllAboutJazz.com full length, in depth INTERVIEW conducted by journalist Jim Worsley via phone on July 28th. The website version is completely unedited and even contains some never-before-seen photos. We hope that everyone will try to find the time to read it, because interviews during a period of time that is essentially between albums are very rare.
How can one be more fortunate than to have senior writer, the very esteemed, John Kelman write such an incredibly detailed, thoughtful and sensitive epic Review for AllAboutJazz.com, just published on September 16th.
He began his piece by writing: "Patchwork, the guitarist's fourth installment in a most decided and inimitable exploration of the nexus point where jazz guitar and Latin/Afro Cuban rhythms meet. Now, one of the cornerstones of his ever-imaginative arrangements and much, much more. Khan's focus may, indeed, have leaned further away from original composition, moving more decidedly towards imaginative and innovative Latin-inflected rearrangements (both harmonically and, perhaps most importantly, rhythmically) of music written by artists including, most prominently, Thelonious Monk, Ornette Coleman and Bobby Hutcherson. But the guitarist's interpretive skills are so strong, so vivid and so inimitable, that even an evergreen tune like Monk's "Epistrophy" feels as much Khan's as it does the original (and similarly unparalleled) composer's."
A note from the Webmaster: Check out KHAN'S KORNER 1 which now has 118 hand-written solo transcriptions. Classic solos by: Miles Davis, Jim Hall, Grant Green, Wes Montgomery, Freddie Hubbard, Michael Brecker, Stanley Turrentine, Herbie Hancock, Clare Fischer, Chick Corea, Pat Martino, Kenny Burrell, Paul Desmond, George Benson, George Coleman, Steve Grossman, John Scofield, Gabor Szabo and Robben Ford, plus corresponding mp3s.
Having not presented anything at KORNER 1 since 2020, it's so nice to have something new or recent to share with everyone. When my interpretation in tribute to Chick Corea via his incredible composition, "Bleeding Orchid" was first posted here at the site on April 16th, 2021, I had no idea what to expect, but the response has been so tremendous that I thought that I would comply with all the requests for a solo transcription. And so, here is Steve Khan's extended solo over that very piece. The performance is supported by wondrous contributions from: Otmaro Ruiz(Fender Rhodes); Rubén Rodríguez(Baby Bass); Bobby Allende(Conga & Bongó); Jimmy Branly(Timbal) and Rob Mounsey. I hope that those interested will enjoy it, but above all, this great, if obscure, Chick Corea tune.
I don't know that one can say that we have arrived at the "merry, merry month of May" but, here we are nonetheless. "Midnight Mood," originally conceived as a brisk Jazz waltz by pianist/composer Joe Zawinul, it was transformed into a gorgeous and eloquent ballad, and so we now offer Wes Montgomery's closing chordal melody statement from his 1966 TEQUILA(Verve) album. Supported by Ron Carter, Grady Tate and a sparse but very romantic string arrangement from Claus Ogerman, the beauty of Wes' playing is on full display. Normally, I would never post a transcription that appears in my "WES MONTGOMERY Guitar Folio" but there is a very good reason for this. If you read the analysis, it will all become very clear. Hoping that everyone continues to be SAFE and HEALTHY during these very trying days, weeks, and months!
What better way is there to greet April than by presenting a joyously swingin' and bluesy Stanley Turrentine 4-chorus solo from his 1961 album "DEARLY BELOVED"(Blue Note) album, which featured: Shirley Scott (organ) and Billy Brooks (drums). His "My Shining Hour" solo, played at a brisk tempo, is filled with countless little phrasing gems that would augment anyone's playing to a higher level. This oft played Harold Arlen-Johnny Mercer standard comes from the Fred Astaire film, "THE SKY'S THE LIMIT"(1943). Hopefully, reading the analysis will provide hours of stimulating and fun reading for those trying to stay safe and healthy during these most difficult days, weeks, and months. Wishing everyone who visits these pages well - we're all in this together!
With the arrival of March, we now present the last in a series of Steve Khan solos from "PATCHWORK." Steve actually plays 2 16-bar solos that appear in different parts of keyboardist/composer Jorge Estrada's wondrous tune, "Huracán Clare" which is dedicated to Clare Fischer. The song is so good that it might have opened most albums, but here, it became the closing tune, and people gravitated towards it right away. Performed fundamentally as a Son Montuno, and powerfully and energetically delivered by Rubén Rodríguez(elec. bass), Bobby Allende (conga), Marc Quiñones (timbal, bongó, maracas and güiro) and Dennis Chambers (drums), Steve's analysis highlights how this incredible piece of music ended-up on his album. It is quite a story!
The cosmic month of February arrived and has now departed, and we presented this Steve Khan solo over one of our great sad love songs, Lerner & Lane's most poignant "Too Late Now." Steve's one chorus solo is a masterpiece of understatement and the usage of space to convey a message of this ballad born of love lost. Performed as an Afro-Bolero-Cha, and following a moving melody statement that is caressed by Rob Mounsey's spectacular orchestral arrangement. When the solo begins, the texture becomes completely transparent, driven by sensitive and responsive rhythm section playing from Rubén, Marc, Bobby and Dennis. The analysis, which includes the lyrics for the song, offers insights on all levels, musical and informative storytelling as always.
Well alrighty then! Let's get this party started, and here's wishing one and all, a very HAPPY NEW YEAR 2020!!! Y, por supuesto, les deseamos un FELIZ AÑO NUEVO 2020!!! The title for Ornette Coleman's initialized "C. & D." is derived from the works of Sigmund Freud, specifically: "Civilization and its Discontents," and this Steve Khan solo becomes the 5th to be presented in the series from PATCHWORK(Tone Center). The 3-chorus guitar solo follows right on the heels of Bob Mintzer's tenor sax solo, and is performed over solo changes that were, in essence, derived from Steve's sense of what Ornette's melodies seemed to indicate. Of course, one could have come-up with something different, or perhaps nothing at all - and just play "time, no changes"! As you heard during some moments on both "Epistrophy" and "A Shade of Jade," the Korg DVP-1 Harmonizer made another appearance playing the role of the psychedelic mini big band à la Joe Zawinul. If you listen closely, you might even hear an accidental quote from Michael Brecker's "Song for Barry." Though it is not represented as part of this presentation, the timbal solo by Marc Quiñones was, for me, one of the many highlights of the album. If you listen to the entire tune, pay attention to it!!!
It's December already? Where has 2019 gone? We are hoping that everyone had a very cozy & warm HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!! A most romantic Bobby Hutcherson ballad "Bouquet" from his brilliant 1966 "HAPPENINGS"(Blue Note) album is the 4th Steve Khan solo from PATCHWORK(Tone Center). The song's performance, as a most rare bolero in 3/4, is highlighted by Rob Mounsey's gorgeous orchestral arrangement. Rob has always demonstrated that he has a great feeling for my steel-string acoustic guitar playing, and this might be our best such collaboration yet. The 2-chorus solo is marked by the usage of space and silences, all made possible by the most sensitive support from: Rubén Rodríguez(baby bass), Bobby Allende (conga), Marc Quiñones (timbal, bongó, and mini-maracas) and Dennis Chambers (drums). I especially love Dennis' work on brushes - wonderfully mixed by engineer James Farber. The analysis which offers all the theoretical details involved during this solo as well as its connections to Herbie Hancock's original solo. We close by wishing everyone a very happy HOLIDAY SEASON for 2019!!!
November brought with it, Steve Khan's solo over Joe Henderson's classic "A Shade of Jade" - marked the 3rd in a series of transcriptions from Steve's new album, PATCHWORK(Tone Center). The song's performance is highlighted by Randy Brecker's flügelhorn brilliance, giving the piece a brassy punch that is usually a part of most Latin Jazz. Steve's 3-chorus solo is marked by linear creativity and references to other Joe Henderson tunes. The playing of Rob Mounsey(keys), Rubén Rodríguez(elec. bass), Bobby Allende(conga), Marc Quiñones(timbal & campana) and Dennis Chambers(drums) is simply spectacular throughout. The analysis is one of Steve's most informative and entertaining with some very special stories. It's all yours with the click of your cursor!
Steve Khan's 3-chorus "Epistrophy" solo marked the 2nd in this series of transcriptions from his new album, PATCHWORK(Tone Center). Throughout the performance of this Thelonious Monk-Kenny Clarke Jazz standard, Steve projects a feeling of swing 4/4 on top of the swirling rhythms of Afro-Cuban 6/8, Abakwa, mixed together with Dennis Chambers' take on the Bernard "Purdie Shuffle." Everything is played with great power and intensity by: Rubén Rodríguez(elec. bass), Bobby Allende(conga) and Marc Quiñones(timbal & campana). As always, the keyboards and orchestral touches fall to Rob Mounsey. It was, in fact, "Epistrophy" that gave birth to the entire album, and you can read that story and so much more at the analysis page. Don't miss this one!!!
We began a series of Steve Khan solo presentations that has now taken us into 2020 with the first in this series being his 6-chorus solo over his own original 24-bar blues, "Naan Issue" from the just released, PATCHWORK(Tone Center). The solo changes were modeled on Wes Montgomery's "Movin' Along" and are played over a Cha-cha-cha rhythm expertly supplied by: Bobby Allende(conga), Marc Quiñones(timbal & güiro and campana), and Rubén Rodríguez(baby bass) and anchored by the huge drum presence of the great Dennis Chambers. The Clare Fischer-inspired harmonies are performed by the incomparable Rob Mounsey. And thus began a series of monthly presentations from the new album!
At KHAN'S KORNER 2, as we have suddenly arrived at September, 2019, it is perhaps time to remind our visitors that Steve had no original tunes on "BACKLOG," so the last lead sheets for tunes by Steve from the recent albums were posted in 2014-15 after the release of "SUBTEXT." In between, and up until now, we were catching-up with songs or arrangements from the earlier albums. Recently, Steve shared his fantastic arrangements for two co-written songs with South African bassist, Bakithi Kumalo: "Lalela Kahle"(Listen Up!) and "Masala." Tunes that attempted to blend South African vocals with Salsa. Just prior to that, he posted a newly revised lead sheet for "Descarga Khanalonious" from "CROSSINGS."
Now it is with great pleasure that we present Steve's lead sheet for "Naan Issue," which is the only original tune from the just released, digitally speaking, "PATCHWORK." A 24-bar blues, which features a melodic blend of Steve's huge guitar sound sandwiched by piccolo and bass clarinet. The core group contributes spectacular playing, they are: Rob Mounsey, Marc Quiñones, Rubén Rodríguez, Bobby Allende, and Dennis Chambers. At this page, those interested can even access the keyboard lead sheets as well. As you will read there, the tune is performed as a Cha-cha-cha and bears the harmonic influence of the great Clare Fischer. Enjoy this one with our best wishes, you will find it at the top of the page, #84.
JUST PUBLISHED!!! a new Steve Khan interview, conducted by bassist/journalist Antonio Gandía, and presented entirely in Spanish for the September/October issue of Músico Pro Magazine. We are privileged and proud to offer the complete and unexpurgated version of the INTERVIEW here at the website. We will be hoping that all of our Spanish speaking visitors will take advantage of this opportunity to hear directly from Steve in your own language.
No one was more shocked than Steve was when Antonio sent him an e-mail with the news that the editors had decided to make the piece their cover story. After many, many years of doing this, Steve had come to realize that these kinds of public relations niceties were just not "in the cards" for him. It is truly one of those moments in life where one expects absolutely nothing, and then, out of the blue, something, something wonderful drops into one's lap from out of the sky - and there it is!!! It might never, ever happen again, and Steve is so very grateful to everyone involved, but especially to Antonio Gandía for his unrelenting positive energy and good vibes throughout.
Queridos amigos: Hace ya bastante tiempo desde la última vez que hice una entrevista completamente en español. El verano pasado, el bajista / periodista musical Antonio Gandía me escribió y me preguntó si podía hacer una entrevista para la revista "MÚSICO PRO". Yo felizmente respondí "¡Sí! ¡Absolutamente!" Unas semanas más tarde, Antonio y yo establecimos una conversación telefónica/entrevista, y los resultados están ahora disponibles en la edición de septiembre/octubre de la revista. Por cuestiones de espacio, Antonio no pudo incluir todo lo que hablamos en la versión de la revista, sin embargo, el texto completo sin expurgar también aparece en mi sitio web, en una página dedicada, y todos mis amigos que hablan español pueden accederla a través del ENLACE que se proporciona aquí.
Antonio hizo un trabajo maravilloso ya que nuestra conversación cubrió muchas áreas de mi vida en la música, y ahora, espero que brinde una buena lectura para todos los que se preocupen por tomarse el tiempo para leerla. Para aquellos de ustedes que se perdieron de alguno de mis lanzamientos de CD recientes, (porque mis anuncios fueron en su mayoría en inglés), ahora pueden aprender un poco sobre los CDs y en su propio idioma.
Estoy muy agradecido con Antonio y la revista "MÚSICO PRO" por su interés en mí y por dar seguimiento para hacer que esto sucediera. La sorpresa más grande de todas llegó cuando Antonio me envió una copia de la portada, y, por primera vez, en años, décadas, allí estaba yo en la portada de una revista de música. Es notable porque este tipo de cosas nunca me pasan. Entonces, ¿cuál fue el nivel de mi gratitud antes? Ahora se multiplicó 1,000 veces. ¡Y estoy feliz de compartir esto con todos hoy! Los más cálidos deseos y un GRAN abrazo para todos.
- Steve Khan (Septiembre de 2018)
NOW AVAILABLE (USA)!!! What a great pleasure it is to announce that it is now official that BGO Records(UK) has now released the reissue of the spectacularly innovative Eyewitness 2 albums "PUBLIC ACCESS-HEADLINE-CROSSINGS"!!!
To make this reissue project viable, would there be a way to include all of the music from both "PUBLIC ACCESS"(1989) and "CROSSINGS"(1994) and somehow add in the 3 tunes recorded for "HEADLINE"? After great trial & error, there was one way to do it, and it worked! With the recording of "PUBLIC ACCESS" the Eyewitness approach to music-making continued with original members: Anthony Jackson (Contrabass Guitar) and Manolo Badrena (Percussion & Voice), but this time with Dave Weckl (Drums) alongside Steve on guitar.
After a complete break, and the recording of "LET'S CALL THIS"(1991), Steve was asked to record again, with Ron Carter (Ac. Bass) and Al Foster (Drums), but to also do 1/2 of the new album with yet another incarnation of Eyewitness, this time including the great Dennis Chambers (Drums). And so, those 3 wonderful performances from "HEADLINE" are now included in this reissue package. Finally, in 1993, the group gathered together again to record "CROSSINGS" and this time, a special guest artist was added to the mix, and the best and most logical choice was Michael Brecker (Tenor Sax), who appeared on the 3 of the 10 tunes.
In all, one can clearly hear the threads of contemporary Latin music being woven and carried forward right to Steve's present work on his 3 most recent albums: "PARTING SHOT"(2011); "SUBTEXT"(2014) and "BACKLOG"(2017)! Listen closely to the music contained in this wonderful reissue, and you will recognize the feeling and sounds of what was to come some 20 years later.
As always, the beautiful reissue cover features the original cover images of Jean-Michel Folon in a gorgeous design by Janet Perr, and you are getting your first look at it here! As it has been in the past, the process to get all the details in order did not happen overnight, and our thanks go out to the good people at Universal Music and BGO Records for their interest, and spirit of cooperation.
In his new and wonderful liner notes for this package, esteemed Jazz journalist Bill Milkowski wrote the following: "In his most recent outings - 2011's Parting Shot, 2014's Subtext and 2017's Backlog - Khan's blending of Latin rhythms and jazz have come to fruition with timbalero Marc Quiñones, conguero Bobby Allende and bassist Rubén Rodríguez providing the authentic Afro-Cuban grooves to the mix. The seeds for those cross-fertilization experiments were planted on his '70s Columbia albums and nurtured in the early '80s on Eyewitness, Modern Times and Casa Loco. With Public Access, Headline and Crossings, Khan makes the next incremental leap in that continuum. There was nothing like this music and approach to music-making in the '90s - and there is still nothing quite like it."
It wasn't so long ago that John Kelman wrote a wonderful piece, Eyewitness Remembered, for AllAboutJazz.com, and that very same piece served as an inspiration to float the idea of an Eyewitness reissue to BGO Records. Now, here we are, a couple of years later, and now, an Eyewitness2 reissue has been officially released. Now, Mr. Kelman has written yet another brilliant Review of this new package. We hope that everyone will take a moment to read what he had to say about these recordings and the players.
In this spectacular review, Mr. Kelman wrote the following: "If The Eyewitness Trilogy introduced a group whose concept was innovative at the time and remains so today, the essential "PUBLIC ACCESS-HEADLINE-CROSSINGS" takes it more than a few steps further, both in its move from original material to imaginative interpretations, and in acting as a bridge between the guitarist's earlier recordings and later, even more decidedly Latin-oriented albums.
Khan, more than many guitarists alive today, demonstrates remarkable knowledge and breadth when it comes to jazz, and as an astute and individual interpreter of the Great American Songbook traditions. Eyewitness is often lauded for its unique (especially for its time) language and approach, deeply felt grooves and stellar playing. Still, the group's telepathic ability to engage with one another on a profound level must not be overlooked, its intrinsic conversational ability, a definitive one. It was the Steve Khan of his career defining "EVIDENCE"(1980), who introduced the concept for Eyewitness, whose approach would continue and evolve, and ultimately imbue other projects throughout the rest of his career. If anything, Khan's guitar gymnastics and light-speed phrasings have become all the more effective for the greater care with which he uses them. In the post-"EVIDENCE" world, nothing about Khan's playing could ever be considered superfluous; instead, every note counts, every note matters."
As 2018 came to a close, John Kelman selected this reissue as one of the BEST RELEASES OF 2018. This development was most surprising and a big thrill as a reissue is almost never selected for such an honor!!!
NOW AVAILABLE!!! "BACKLOG" will be the title of Steve's new recording, and there is, of course, a subtitle in Spanish, "Asuntos Pendientes." On this album, really the 3rd in a series, Steve expands the potential of the guitar in the context of Latin music, and here, the core group features: Rubén Rodríguez (Baby Bass & Elec. Bass), Bobby Allende (Conga & Bongo), Marc Quiñones (Timbal & Perc.), and joined for the 1st time by Mark Walker (Drums). A series of old and dear friends, respected colleagues as guest artists added so much to the music, they include: Rob Mounsey(Keys & Orchestrations); Randy Brecker (Trumpet); Mike Mainieri (Vibes); Bob Mintzer (Tenor Sax) and Tatiana Parra (Voice). In all, they perform Steve's arrangements of compositions by: Thelonious Monk, "Criss Cross"; Greg Osby, "Concepticus in C"; Ornette Coleman, "Latin Genetics" and "Invisible"; Bobby Hutcherson, "Head Start" and "Rojo"; and Andrew Hill, "Catta." The recording features two gorgeous ballads: "Our Town" written by Steve's father, Sammy Cahn and Jimmy Van Heusen, and "Emily"(Johnny Mandel-Johnny Mercer). Perhaps the great surprise of the album is the interpretation of Stevie Wonder's "Go Home."
Once again, the music was recorded by James Farber at Avatar Studios during January-April, 2016. Michel Granger's beautiful images grace the covers, and gives this 3rd album in the series its own unique look. As a matter of fact, there is a slightly different look for the USA, Japan, and Europe.
For several reasons, the releases were staggered! 55 Records(Japan) released the album on September 21st, 2016, and then ESC Records(Germany/Europe) released the album on October 7th, 2016. The U.S. release on Tone Center Records became available across all platforms on February 24th, 2017. If you already have both "PARTING SHOT" and "SUBTEXT" you will not want to miss adding this one to your collection!!!
Don't miss Mark F. Turner's terrific REVIEW at AllAboutJazz.com!
In his review, also for AllAboutJazz.com, James Nadal wrote the following about "BACKLOG":
"Steve Khan has undertaken the role of expanding and redefining the role of the guitar in the hybrid genre of Latin Jazz..... With Backlog, Khan rounds out the mesmerizing trilogy encompassing Parting Shot (2011) and Subtext (2014). Khan's music continues to evolve, and his quest to take the guitar into an uncharted trajectory has bestowed him with a singular style. No one plays or sounds like Steve Khan, his clever interpretations of jazz compositions shaken up with Afro-Caribbean rhythms is always on the cusp. He is the inquisitive jazz musician mastering the evasive art of reinvention and improvisation on his own terms, in his own time."
From the "LATIN JAZZ CORNER" website, we just received news that Chip Boaz had named "BACKLOG" as its "ALBUM OF THE WEEK"!!! We could not be more pleased and grateful for this honor. His review of the album shows that he has a deep understanding of the genre, and what Steve has been trying to do in creating a broader role for the guitar within it. Mil gracias Chip!!!
Once again, I am honored and really thrilled to have another spectacular review from Rafael Vega Curry, in Spanish of course, which appears in the March 31st issue of "Reseña" from "Fundación Nacional para la Cultura Popular de Puerto Rico."
So, for all our Spanish speaking visitors, this was definitely something most special that we wanted to share with you.
When it was released in Japan, "JAZZ LIFE" magazine wrote this of the album: "Cutting edge Latin jazz album with a completely new approach to wonderful compositions. Steve Khan's unique voice creates exciting music no matter what the material might be, or the group with which he plays. That is what makes him so great!" Just prior to the release JAZZ LIFE's Yujin Naito conducted an in depth INTERVIEW with Steve, specifically about the new album, so make some time to read it.
After its release in Germany, Ingo Andruschkewitsch wrote the following about the album: "Latin Jazz that is inspiring from the first second that you listen to it. You can hear pure joy from the musicians with every note. Steve's musicianship and musicality are unbelievable!!!"
NOW AVAILABLE!!! We are so pleased that we can now officially announce that, on April 1st of 2016, BGO Records(UK) officially released the reissue of the groundbreaking albums "EYEWITNESS-MODERN TIMES-CASA LOCO"!!!
All 3 albums have been digitally remastered, and now housed on 2 CDs. Originally recorded between 1981-1983, these albums featured the seminal group of: Anthony Jackson (Bass Guitar & Contrabass Guitar), Steve Jordan (Drums) and, Manolo Badrena (Percussion & Voice), alongside Steve on guitar.
This is the first time that "MODERN TIMES" has been available on CD outside of Japan. And, of course, as we near the end of the CD Age, this might well be the last time these fantastic recordings will be offered as CDs.
As always, the beautiful reissue cover features the original cover images of Jean-Michel Folon in a gorgeous design by Janet Perr, and you are getting your first look at it here! It was a long and difficult process to make this reissue happen, and our thanks go out to the good people at Universal Music and BGO Records for their interest, and spirit of cooperation.
It wasn't so long ago that John Kelman wrote a wonderful piece, Eyewitness Remembered, for allaboutjazz.com, and that very same piece served as an inspiration to float the idea of an Eyewitness reissue to BGO Records. Now, here we are, some months later, the reissue has been officially released and now, Kelman has penned this superb Review of the package. We hope that everyone will take a moment to read what he had to say about these recordings and the players.
NOW AVAILABLE!!! "SUBTEXT" is the title of Steve's most recent recording, and again, there is a subtitle in Spanish, "Subtexto en Azul." On the album, Steve continues his explorations of the wondrous traditions of Latin music, and this time, the core group features: Rubén Rodríguez (El. Bass & Baby Bass), Bobby Allende (Conga), Marc Quiñones (Timbal), and Dennis Chambers (Drums). At varying moments, they are joined by some great musicians, dear friends, as guest artists, including: Rob Mounsey (Keys & Orchestrations); Randy Brecker (Flügelhorn); Gil Goldstein (Accordion); and Mariana Ingold (Vocals). In all, they perform Steve's arrangements of compositions by: Ornette Coleman, "Bird Food"; Freddie Hubbard, "Baraka Sasa"; Wayne Shorter, "Infant Eyes"; Greg Osby, "Heard"; Thelonious Monk, "Hackensack"; and the gorgeous ballad, "Never Let Me Go"(Livingston-Evans). All this, plus 2 originals from Steve, and, a Cumbia driven Vallenato epic collaboration between Steve and Mariana Ingold.
Once again, the music was recorded by James Farber at Avatar Studios during January 29th-30th, 2014. Michel Granger's beautiful image graces the cover, and contributes its own particular "subtext."
Again, 55 Records(Japan); ESC Records(Germany/Europe) and Tone Center Records(USA) formed this important part of the team. 55 Records released the album on May 21st, and ESC Records released it on May 30th. The U.S. release just happened on June 24th, 2014. If you enjoyed "PARTING SHOT," you will surely love this new one!!!
As 2014 came to a close, John Kelman selected "SUBTEXT" as one of the BEST RELEASES OF 2014. Obviously, this was a great honor to placed in such excellent company!!!
For March of 2015, in celebration of the BGO Records(UK) reissue of Steve's 3 Columbia albums from 1977-79, we presented the lead sheet for Randy Brecker's wonderful tune "The Big Ones" which appeared on "TIGHTROPE"(1977) and featured a stellar line-up of musicians that included: the Brecker Bros., David Sanborn, Don Grolnick, Bob James, Will Lee, Steve Gadd, and Ralph MacDonald. This is actually the first time that all three LPs will appear in the digital realm, though as an import, in the United States, Europe, and South America. This might be the only opportunity to have these albums as CDs.
During the 2014 Holiday Season we offered a treat with Steve's arrangement of "The Christmas Waltz," his father's one real Christmas song that reunited Steve with Randy and Michael Brecker for the 1995 JAZZ TO THE WORLD(Blue Note) album. The arrangement serves as a homage to influences as different as: Peggy Lee, Frank Sinatra, Clare Fischer, and the Jazz Crusaders too. Wishing everyone a very HAPPY HOLIDAY SEASON
With the arrival of autumn, October, 2014 is here and we're happy to share "Blue Subtext," the 2nd of Steve's original from "SUBTEXT." The tune began as an experimental play-along tribute to the lush and romantic keyboard harmonies of Clare Fischer. On the recording, that role was filled with love and care by the great Rob Mounsey. The changes to the tune are based upon a well-known Jazz standard, and serves as a great vehicle for Steve's playing. Quite out of nowhere, echoes of his guitar hero Wes Montgomery popped-up in couple of places.
"Bait and Switch" was the first tune posted from "SUBTEXT," composed as a tribute, in part, to the late, great Joe Zawinul, with whom Steve shared many stages and many miles of travel, conversations, and gin rummy, during the summer of 1986. Judging by the feedback, everyone seemed to enjoy reading about just how this tune was put together!!!
We celebrated of the simultaneous recent uploads to iTunes of Steve's catalog albums from the past, we are pleased to offer the last remaining composition, the title song from the "MODERN TIMES"(1982) album. This live album was the 2nd of three recordings with the original Eyewitness configuration that featured: Anthony Jackson, Steve Jordan, and Manolo Badrena. If you are or were a fan of that group, don't miss this special presentation of a newly revised lead sheet. Here's hoping that this never-ending winter of our discontent is almost finished!!!
This site created and maintained by Blaine Fallis, A Train Creative, Inc. . Graphic design Blaine and Youngsuk Fallis. Written and edited by Steve Khan. Steve Khan illustration by NED SHAW. Don't miss Ned's latest at our ONLINE GALLERY!