Williams Battle Call
Bruce Von Stiers
Ellis Williams is a rather resourceful young man. This jazz trumpeter and vocalist has taken lessons from the legendary Melton Mustafa and Timey Zachery. Following an undergraduate degree in Music Media, Ellis attended Full Sail University for a Masters In Music Entertainment degree. So not only is he talented on the trumpet. Ellis has a good sense of how music and the entertainment worlds mesh.
Ellis had a pretty successful debut album titled Euphoria. Now he is back with his sophomore offering. This new album is Call To Battle. It is a combination of vocal songs and instrumentals. Ellis is self-releasing the album.
The album has eleven songs and a play time of fifty-three minutes. Ellis composed all of the music on the album.
Helping out on the album are Bradley Hairston on drums, David Gross on bass and Darius Mines on organ and Rhodes. Donovan Capron played the organ and synth. Andrews “Hawksilver” Pliand played guitar. He also helped produce the album. Elena Chavez provided backing vocals. And Ellis played the trumpet and did the lead vocals.
Starting out the album is a spoken piece titled This Is The Call. It sets up the content of the album as a call to stand up and to stand out. Ellis urges the listener to turn anger and frustration into something positive.
Then the album slides into a song that has elements of funk, rock and a touch of classic jazz. It is called Braving Darkness. There is some cool rock guitar mixed in a tough drum solo and killer trumpet. But wait, about halfway through the song there is a synth bit that is really great.
My Closest Friend starts out with a slow, haunting sound. Ellis sings here about self-doubt and redemption.
Fixed on The Groove is a slow and easy piece with elements of groove and subtle old school jazz.
What's Love is a slow and haunting piece that features Ellis on trumpet.
Where Do We Go From Here? is a cool R & B flavored vocal piece. Near the end of the song Ellis has a tough trumpet solo.
Mystic Safari is a light smooth jazz styled tune.
The eighth song on the album is the title track, Call To Battle. It is a rock infused, funk and jazz piece with some too music. Both the lead and backing vocals on the song are really great. The lyrics expand on the theme from the first entry on the album, rising above your circumstances and prove yourself.
Excalibur is a fast paced, funk piece with some rock styling mixed in.
Slow and easy, with an almost Reggae tone is Looking Towards Tomorrow. This is the last song on the album with vocals.
The album closes with a too piece called Unchained. It starts out slow with trumpet, piano and guitar, then slides into a rock infused groove.
Ellis Williams is definitely not your average jazz musician and vocalist. His compositions meld several different stylings and genres. That makes for a very intriguing listening experience. As much as I love jazz I also love rock music. And I also like funk quite a bit. To have all of those elements represented in this album was pretty cool.
Call To Battle can be purchased at many music retailers.
To find out more, visit www.elliswilliamsmusic.com
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© 2016 Bruce E Von Stiers