Thursday, March 13, 2014

The title of guitarist Dave Stryker’s new recording, Eight Track (Strikezone Records) refers to the music of the 70s when 8 track tape players were in vogue. In his notes, Stryker observed that this was “a time when there was a lot of great pop music going on as well as jazz.” In addressing this material, his trio of organist Jared Gold and drummer McClenty Hunter is augmented by vibraphonist Stefon Harris.

Songs with great melodies and that evoke a great time is what Stryker sought and among the songs interpreted here are The Spinner’s I’ll Be Around; Curtis Mayfield’s Pusherman/Superfly; Glen Campbell’s Wichita Linesman; The Fifth Dimension’s Aquarius; The Association’s Never My Love; and Pink Floyd’s Bread Money. Stryker and Harris are the dominant solo voices on the delightful, straightforward performances o with Gold and Harris helping swing these performances. The interplay between Stryker and Harris is marvelous and they both make these instruments sing with their lyricism and deft, imaginative soloing.

The augmentation of an organ trio with a vibraphonist may not be frequent occurrence, but Stefan Harris’ contributions to Dave Stryker’s trio help make Eight Track such a entertaining listening experience.

I received my review copy from a publicist. Here is a little video on the making of Eight Track.


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