Archive for July 9th, 2013

Bob Baldwin – Twenty

TwentyFor jazz cats, “milestone” is a significant word. Literally, it means 1) a stone marker set up on a roadside to indicate the distance in miles from a given point or 2) an important event as in a person’s career. In jazz, achieving a milestone means facing hazards even more hardcore, including long hours/short money, no medical benefits, insurance or 401K, being overshadowed by pop, roughshod relationships, daunting legacies to live up to, and the ever-dreaded “jazz police” (translation: identical). Milestone is the name of a great jazz record label.

And the plural form, “Milestones,” means “Miles Davis composition that is the very definition of Jazz.” Source: The Tony Williams Dictionary of Music.

Bob Baldwin – keyboardist/composer/arranger/leader/sideman/author (and sometimes singer and engineer) – has arrived at an applaud-able milestone with Twenty, his 20th project since starting out on his musical journey in 1988 with the prophetically titled I’ve Got a Long Way to Go. Brother Baldwin has been fighting the good fight to build a faithful audience by steadily coming out of a versatile bag…but not without taking his share of industry lumps.

In 1989, he reached one early milestone landing at New York giant Atlantic Records when it launched its “Atlantic Jazz” division (on which he thrived with label mates ranging from Ahmad Jamal to Bobby Lyle), only to see it close as a sign-of-the-times casualty. Of several other companies for which he has recorded, one filed for bankruptcy while many more simply went out of business. An executive at yet another company was arrested as the ringleader of a ponzi scheme. Bob’s luck is badder’n Teddy Pendergrass’ AND Brother Eddie Harris’ put together!

Fortunately, Bob is a survivor and his stamina marks him as “no ways tired,” as evidenced by these 13 tracks of Twenty. (Liner notes by A. Scott Galloway).

Early bird fans – Twenty is out now exclusively on Bob’s site…only $9.99 mp3 (320 kpbs hi-res) download. Hear Sound clips….scroll down when you get to the page. First disc mailing July 23.