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Hands by Frank Abarca

This demo is a collection of fairly innovative pieces (four to be exact) wherein Frank Abarca experiments with composing songs exclusively with drums. Interesting, to say the least. I truly enjoyed the first cut, "So You Want to Be Like Them," an appeal to young folks to better select and scrutinize their role models.

Abarca has an obvious penchant for poetry coupled with some modern day rap, as demonstrated here. The second cut, "I Want to Know You," focuses on Caribbean rhythms and has a very nice feel. He then moves on to the Far East on track three, "Going Through the Motions," and tackles the mysterious melodies of the Orient. Well done!. The final cut, "Reborn," takes us to the Middle East, with its equally mysterious melodies. He boasts, in spoken word, of the long-standing role of the drummer (to paraphrase : "I was there in the beginning, and I will always be there.... for I am the drummer").

The melody is a subtle yet catchy one. This CD demonstrates the potential and promise of the drums as the central instrument in a composition. I would have liked to have heard more from Abarca to see just where he would further take this concept. What I heard is interesting enough to want to explore his style a bit more, not as a smooth jazz aficionado, not even as one who enjoys a good deal of new age music (for which I’d say this is better suited), but simply as a listener interested in musical creativity. What Frank Abarca has been able to do with drums is most remarkable, and there certainly is a place for such talent in the wide, diverse, and innovative world of music.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Frank Abarca
  • CD Title: Hands
  • Genre: Various Jazz Styles
  • Year Released: 2006
  • Record Label: Abarca Productions
  • Musicians: So You Want to Be Like Them, I Want to Know You, Going Through the Motions, ReBorn
  • Rating: Three Stars
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