Buster Williams: Forward Motion

The Legendary Bassist Continues His Ascending Path on Unalome

Buster Williams: Forward Motion

The Legendary Bassist Continues His Ascending Path on Unalome

There’s something about the presence of a vocalist that seeps inside of Buster Williams’ soul and reverberates through his bass. Case in point, his cover of Shirley Horn’s signature song, “Here’s to Life,” on his latest effort, Unalome [Smoke Sessions Records]. With vocalist Jean Baylor purring poignantly, Williams’ support lines are equal parts anchor and countermelody, sometimes a response to Baylor’s call, other times setting up her next vocal phrase. When he arrives at his solo, his inner crooner emerges with a memorable theme that he delivers and develops using vibrato, varied note durations, phrases that stretch the beat before resolving rhythmically, and expressive slides in and out of notes. Joining Baylor—who appears on seven of Unalome’s eight tracks—are longtime Buster bandmates George Colligan on piano and Lenny White on drums, plus frequent collaborators vibraphonist Stefon Harris and saxophonist Bruce Williams (no relation). Together they remain ste
Subscribe or log in to read the rest of this content.
Chris Jisi   By: Chris Jisi