New York Yankees superstar Bernie Williams isn't just out to clinch the World Series. These days, he is out promoting his new debut album "The Journey Within"
. Williams is joining the ranks of such sports figures as former NBA superstar Wayman Tisdale in jumpstarting a music career.
Williams, a successful guitarist and composer whose training spans as far back as a 13-year-old studying at the Escuela Libre de Musica in Puerto Rico, penned seven out of 11 tracks on his album. When including a stellar list of guest stars such as Grammy Award-winning artists Bela Fleck, Ruben Blades and Gilberto Santa Rosa, "The Journey Within"
seems to have a perfect touch. Just ask keyboardist David Benoit, who is featured in "Just Because."
Williams celebrates his Puerto Rican heritage in tunes such as "La Salsa En Mi," "Desvelado"
and "Samba Novo."
A tribute is given to Williams' father in "Para Don Berna.
There is also a hint of soul in Williams' melodic, contemporary and Latin-flavored jazz selections. Check out Williams' adaptation of Billy Joel's "And So It Goes,"
along with a rendition of the Kansas classic "Dust In The Wind."
Added as a touching ending to the album are the voices of Williams' children, who sound innocent and sweet.
Although Williams had previously planned on a musical career before joining Major Baseball League, there is no doubt he is a serious musician and a stellar acoustic and electric guitarist.
Given kudos by renowed British star Paul McCartney, "The Journey Within"
would be a perfect addition to a contemporary jazz lovers' collection. A special limited-edition pressing of "The Journey Within"
features original cover art of Williams depicted by legendary artist LeRoy Neiman. Who knows? Maybe one of these days Bernie Williams and Wayman Tisdale could do an collaboration.