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What 4 by Rick Bishop

An associate at Colby College in Waterville, Maine, composer Rick Bishop plays fretted, fretless and 12 string bass, as well as guitar on this collection. This is his second release - his first released way back in 1995.

Bishop sports many different hats on this recording; from swing, to blues, to post-bop to traditional, and does so with straightforward openness, but also with a lighthearted sense of wonder and imaginative adventure. The sound is simple and soft for the most part, which reveals the intrinsic emotion and candor within his bass and guitar playing. On "Improv" he embarks on a floating, sailing wave of exploration that gently meanders along as it travels wispy, winding paths.

There are some stellar solos throughout, also. Track one, "The Love in Her Eyes," features a shrill and thrilling horn solo. "Closets" starts nervously, then stops short, becomes a bit pensive, and then jerks forward with a sense of surging importance and substance. Bishop offers quite a unique and captivating musical perspective, here. "Wills Apple" is thoroughly charged with piano and "For Jake’s Sake" contains a few exceptional drum solos.

I’d like to hear more from Bishop and hope his next release is far less than a decade away.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Rick Bishop
  • CD Title: What 4
  • Genre: Straight-Ahead / Classic
  • Year Released: 2005
  • Record Label: P.E.P Records
  • Tracks: The Love in Her Eyes, Orbeth, Carpe Diem, Said and Done, ‘Nuff Said, Portrait of Bette, Tony Bologna, Closets, Jeans Dream, Wills Apple, For Jake’s Sake, Improv
  • Rating: Four Stars
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