In late November of 2008, he recorded his debut CD at Rotary Records in West Springfield, Massachusetts. For the recording,Thomson Kneeland plays acoustic bass and Mark Ferber provides the fine drumming. Both are young musicians based in New York City with excellent credentials.
These pieces are not just vamps waiting for long solos; instead, many of the songs have strong melodic lines that open up logically for the various solos. "Oddity" displays a Middle-Eastern feel in the rhythms and ringing guitar chords; Bakir's stinging phrases gallop atop Ferber's exciting drum work and Kneeland's rich bass tones. "Stop & Go" has a "rockish" feel, thanks to the pounding drums and thumping bass lines. Bakir digs in on this track and one can hear the influence of Allan Holdsworth, not so much for blazing fast riffs but in the textures of the guitar sound. Without a second lead instrument, Bakir alternates between single-note lines and chordal strumming. "Steps" is a good example of how he allows the melody to dictate the pace, giving room to Kneeland for a short, melodic, solo before digging in to a thoughtful guitar spot.
Other highlights include the title track that opens the program. The guitarist's sound is quite clear allowing the trills and little circular riffs to stand out on a piece that is somewhat introspective. "Play!" is another "hot" track, with a rhythm line that, at times, sounds like Juan Tizol's "Caravan." Kneeland's bouncing bass phrases atop Ferber's strutting drums gives the guitarist the impetus to "let rip."
"On My Way" is a solid debut. It's easy to put this music on and just let it play. One can hear the influences of Holdsworth, John Scofield and Bill Frisell but Bakir is no imitator. The voice of the guitar one hears on the opening cut never wavers or falters throughout. The rhythm section is impressive in their support and creativity. Sinan Bakir is a good young composer and player worth your attention.
Richard Kamins - Hartford Courant