Bruce Von Stiers
Athena Pope has been the publicist for Keiko Matsui for quite some time. Every once in a while Athena will add a new artist to her roster of clients. One such artist is jazz guitarist Dave Hill. He is what is known as a “seasoned player” in the L.A. area. Dave has played with Scott Wilke, Tim McIntyre and other great jazz musicians. Now Dave has just released his debut album. The title of the album is Two Seasons. It is a self produced and released title that is sure to garner awards and accumulate brand new fans for Dave.
Two Seasons has eight songs. Of those, Dave wrote six of them and co-wrote another. The album was recorded over a three year period, from March of 2001 through August of 2003. Yes, sometimes it does take a while to get the finishing touches done on an album. And this one was definitely worth the wait.
Helping Dave out on the album is a great bunch of jazz musicians. There is Adam Cohen on bass, Tim McIntyre on drums and Billy Hulting on percussion. Longtime The Rippingtons drummer Dave Karasony is on one of the songs. There is also Gregg Karukas, the great keyboardist from The Rippingtons. Other musicians who helped out on the album include Bill Keis, Kevin Kings, Bill Fulton, Eric Wells, Todd Wolfe and Rick Rossi. There is also some fantastic saxophone work from Andy Suzuki on the album.
Remembering You is the first song on the album. It begins with a subtle guitar with light drums backing it up. The guitar from Dave is nicely done and the other instruments complement the song.
The title track, Two Seasons, is a moderately paced piece. It has some heavy bits, jamming with some seemingly rock instilled licks. Then it moves back down into some too cool piano work from Karukas. Not to be outdone, Suzuki has a great sax solo in the song. Dave's guitar work on the song shows why he has been popular in clubs around the L.A. area for so long.
If You Don't Care Anymore is a blues tinted song. Some understated blues come through with the guitar and keyboards. The sax helps add the smooth jazz spin on the song.
Mayso is another song that is slow and easy. It features Ernest Tibbs on the fretless bass. Workin' On Your Thing has Billy Hulting doing some pretty cool vibes. The song is also another easy and melodic piece.
When We're Together is a soft and gentle love song. The press release for the album calls this song dreamy and hypnotic. I agree with that. It is one of those songs that conjure up visions of a couple together on a sofa, looking lovingly into each others eyes.
Pack A Lunch begins with some guitar that might make you think of a ‘60's pop tune. It is light and breezy with a laid back feel.
The last track on the album is Teite. The song has a lot of energy. There are several solos on the song, with some great sax and keyboard bits.
Two Seasons is an album not to miss. Dave Hill is just not just another club date musician. He plays wonderfully and his music will delight any smooth jazz fan. He has surrounded himself with top tier musicians whose playing greatly complements the guitar on the album.
Dave is promoting the album through his web site. You can hear MP3 clips from four of the songs on the album on the site. Dave also put an MP3 of the full song version of When We're Together on the site. The site can be found at www.davehillmusic.com .
© 2004 Bruce E Von Stiers