To say that Brett Baker is a prolific trombone recording artist would be an understatment. He is due to release six albums this year alone. This latest recording BONEMAN WALKING is an excellent addition to his catalogue. The title track was composed by Michael Davis, another well-known trombonist and composer. In the liner notes, Baker states that his reason for this album was to “showcase a collection of popular solos which I have enjoyed playing over the years or enjoyed listening to as a child.”
The repertoire is quite varied. A few selections, such as Simon's Altantic Zephyrs and Cook's Bolivar will be familiar to most trombonists, however, some pieces are new commissions written specifically for this recording. Even with this variety, the pieces are generally “light” in nature.
The recording quality is excellent throughout. The balance between trombone and piano is perfect, and the additional percussion on Salsa Panadero and Brasilia is well-blended.
Bakers playing is extremely energetic and musical. His obvious enjoyment while perfroming is evident from the first track. There are several technically difficult solos on this recording, yet Baker's musical direction is never in question. He uses his techncial facility to express his musical ideas, never as a vehicle for simply “showing off”. That alone makes adding this recording to your collection worthwhile.
Metropolitan State University of Denver