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Bluestate

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Barnes & Noble - Ted Panken
At 30, Doug Wamble is a quadruple threat: accomplished singer-songwriter, eclectic composer, killer guitarist, and heady improviser. His second album, Bluestate, illuminates the broad well of influence from which he draws. Building on Country Libations, his 2003 debut, the Memphis-born Wamble, whose resume includes gigs with Cassandra Wilson, Madeleine Peyroux, the Millennial Territory Orchestra, and Wynton Marsalis, references a heap of southern roots vernaculars -- urban and rural blues, gospel, country, bluegrass -- and the complex threads that comprise the vocabulary of modern jazz expression. Deploying a big, percussive, vibrato-laden guitar sound and an urgent, ...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Ted Panken
At 30, Doug Wamble is a quadruple threat: accomplished singer-songwriter, eclectic composer, killer guitarist, and heady improviser. His second album, Bluestate, illuminates the broad well of influence from which he draws. Building on Country Libations, his 2003 debut, the Memphis-born Wamble, whose resume includes gigs with Cassandra Wilson, Madeleine Peyroux, the Millennial Territory Orchestra, and Wynton Marsalis, references a heap of southern roots vernaculars -- urban and rural blues, gospel, country, bluegrass -- and the complex threads that comprise the vocabulary of modern jazz expression. Deploying a big, percussive, vibrato-laden guitar sound and an urgent, malleable tenor that he phrases with instrumental suppleness, he creates a tonal personality as informed by the primal as by the abstract. The repertoire comprises six Wamble originals, a Monk-like line by the fine pianist Roy Dunlap, a kaleidoscopic Wamble arrangement of "Rockin' Jerusalem" on which producer Branford Marsalis produces a shades-of-Coltrane solo, and well-wrought interpretations of Peter Gabriel's "Washing of the Water" and Stevie Wonder's "Have a Talk with God." Wamble flatters himself a touch in describing his sound as "Robert Johnson meets Ornette Coleman," but he hasa big talent, and the phrase will serve.
All Music Guide - Matt Collar
Guitarist/vocalist Doug Wamble's second outing for Marsalis Music is a bit of a departure from the country blues-inflected sound of his debut disc, Country Libations. Featuring his longtime working ensemble of pianist Roy Dunlap, bassist Jeff Hanley, and drummer Peter Miles, Bluestate finds Wamble toning down his more old-timey influences in favor of a contemporary post-bop aesthetic. Also, Wamble has magnified the Southern gospel influences evident on Country Libations into a mix of folky gospel and complex harmonic jazz. The combination works particular well as Wamble, having expressed a wide array of influences from Charlie Christian to Pat Metheny, seems ever intent on forging new ground while always retaining certain valuable aspects of the jazz tradition. To these ends, he still performs with his hollow-body guitar amplified by a microphone in the old-school technique. The result is a robust, natural, almost horn-like sound that allows him an array of dynamic choices and tonal colors. Vocally, Wamble also displays growth, as on the opening track, the melancholy "If I Live to See the Day," which finds him lamenting the current paucity of peace and truth in the world. The track has a compelling Wayne Shorter-esque harmonic conception, and Wamble's burnished and supple vocals recall Kurt Elling. Similarly, Wamble digs into the traditional gospel hymn "Rockin' Jerusalem," showcasing his deft E-Bow skills on the bluesy and infectious track, which also features label owner Branford Marsalis on a burning tenor sax solo.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 5/10/2005
  • Label: Marsalis Music
  • UPC: 011661331129
  • Catalog Number: 613311

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 If I Live to See the Day
  2. 2 Washing of the Water
  3. 3 The Homewrecker Hump
  4. 4 Antoine's Pillow Rock
  5. 5 Rockin' Jerusalem
  6. 6 One-Ninin'
  7. 7 No More Shrubs in Casablanca
  8. 8 Have a Talk With God
  9. 9 Gone Away
  10. 10 The Bear and the Toad
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Doug Wamble Primary Artist, Guitar, Vocals, Musician
Branford Marsalis Tenor Saxophone, Guest Appearance
Peter Miles Drums, Musician
Jeff Hanley Bass, Musician
Roy Dunlap Piano, Musician
Technical Credits
Greg Calbi Mastering
Branford Marsalis Producer, Mastering, Audio Production
Arnold Levine Art Direction
Rob "Wacko" Hunter Engineer
Matt Munisteri Liner Notes
Doug Wamble Arranger
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