Bassist Jimmy Haslip has created an iconic career in recording and performing. Producing over 190 recordings, he also has himself recorded on over 400 records. Haslip is a founding member of the group Yellowjackets, a member for 34 years. He has 22 GRAMMY-Nominations and 3 GRAMMY-Wins, including winning a DOVE Award, a JAZZ ANGEL award, and an EDISON award nomination. He has toured and recorded with over 180 artists and bands in 52 years, including Gino Vannelli, David Sanborn, Jerry Garcia, Rod Stewart, Joe Cocker, Herb Alpert, Chaka Khan, Al Jarreau, Gary Wright, John Scofield, Crosby, Stills & Nash, Roy Ayers & Ubiquity, Ricki Lee Jones, George Harrison, Larson/Feiton Band, Michael McDonald, Lee Ritenour, Billy Cobham, Pat Metheny, George Duke, Joe Walsh Robert Cray, Branford Marsalis, Bobby McFerrin, Anita Baker, Walter Becker, Allan Holdsworth, Donald Fagan, Bruce Hornsby, and the Jeff Lorber Fusion just to name a few.
Electric and syn-guitarist Barry Coates, with his melodic but expressive approach, has been recording solo projects and has worked with some interesting artists over the years, including touring with the Pointer Sisters, Angela Bofill, Willie Bobo, John Klemmer, and Kitaro. Coates has fared equally well on his own. His music is heard in such films as Dead Bang, Partners in Crime, Fatal Attraction, and television shows including Two on the Town, Eye on Hollywood, Partners in Crime, the Weather Channel, and Playboy After Dark. Coates recorded two impressive albums with his band Barry Coates & the Hats, Because I Love You, and Move Like A Dancer. On his third album, The Spirit Within, he collaborated with bass player Jimmy Haslip of the Yellowjackets. Their compositions can be heard on this album, also Luis Conte’s Black Forest (a must-have percussionist CD) and the Yellowjackets The Spin. More recently, Warner Bros published Jimmy and Barry’s guitar and bass instruction books titled Ultimate Play Along/Just Classic Jazz. Vol 1-3.
A resident of Los Angeles, drummer Jerry Kalaf has been active in the jazz community for many years. His credits include performances and tours with Eddie Harris, Gary Burton, Gary Foster, Frank Strazzeri, Bill Mays, Bill Perkins, Jimmy Cleveland, The Pointer Sisters, Gregory Hines, and Major Holley. Jerry has toured Europe, Asia, Russia, South America, Africa, and the United States as musical director of the Jazz Tap Ensemble, with performances at the Playboy Jazz festival in Los Angeles, Salzburg Jazz festival in Salzburg, Austria, and in New York, at Carnegie Hall, and the Apollo Theater. Active in the recording studios of Los Angeles, Jerry has participated as both a performer and composer in scoring sessions for hundreds of film and television shows.
“Towner” has a Metheny-esque quality to it, in the way Coates soundscapes with his guitar and synthesizer. Kalaf lays down an active yet constant beat that captures the ear in its propulsion. Coates and Haslip dance around the melody with a dreamy, ethereal sound that lingers in the ethos of the melody. Appropriately placed within the program, “Transcendent” offers a powerful and sublimely thoughtful composition, transecting from an open melody to a driving beat by Kalaf that is explorative yet focused, superbly intertwining each player’s quintessential qualities of transcending dogma. “Faith” also offers a spacious approach to the aesthetic of sound, with Coates fingerpicking a constant propulsion with added swells. Kalaf adds auxiliary percussion for added effect and well-placed cymbal work. Haslip takes a poignant and heartfelt approach to this solo, giving “Faith” a pensive appeal.
“Swing Set” conjures all the makings of modern jazz, its muscularity of harmony and swing in a non-traditional sense. Haslip radiates a warm bass sonority, while Kalaf actively curates the rhythm of the song, all highlighted by a droning guitar pattern that entrances the auditor. “Before” offers the listener a layered experience of synthesizer and guitar by Coates – his delicate yet warming touch is filled with precision and spacious emotive. While Haslip and Kalaf accentuate rhythm and release for a satisfying excursion. “Mays” offers a meditative quality. Its picturesque melody transports the listener with a calming salve for the soul. Coates does a great job scoring this song with synthesizers for effect. “Sacred” is an acoustic pallet cleanse filled with beauty and devotion. Coates dexterity is on full display, with Haslip offering soaring basslines while Kalaf adds meaningful commentary on drums, animating each note to its fullest potential. “Retrograde” (defined as moving backward; having a backward motion or direction) is aptly titled, an active, almost manic in comparison tune, exploring the Avant side of progressive music. Each player brings their “A” game as they swirl and bend within the trio sound for an exciting catabolic listen. New Dreams is an album to be savored. There is nothing typical or predictable within the grooves of this album. Whether touching on the pensive or the cognitive, the album fires on all cylinders by three top-shelf players.
Barry Coates: guitar, synth guitar
Jimmy Haslip: fretless & fretted bass
Jerry Kalaf: drums, percussion
Artist: Barry Coates, Jimmy Haslip, Jerry Kalaf
CD Title: New Dreams
Label: Outside In Music
Street Date: July 29, 2022
Add Date: August 1, 2022
Available at all fine retailers