Some vocalists, whether with wordless chants or scats, successfully emulate an instrument, be it a trumpet or flute. Names like Janis Siegel and Tierney Sutton come to mind. But when a trombonist who also sings can blow the brass or croon, and make either interchangeable with the other, it’s pretty impressive.
Pete McGuinness accomplishes that with his new release, Voice Like a Horn (Summit Records, 2013). With him are Jon Gordon, alto sax and flute on two songs; Bill Mobley, trumpet on two songs; Ted Kooshian, piano; Andy Eulau, bass; and Scott Neumann, drums.
“Yesterdays” gets things started. McGuinness opens the entire kit, inflections, scats and of course singing. His middle scat could easily transcribe into a trumpet or trombone solo. That’s a trait that encapsulates the theme of the entire album.