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January 2018 Cover
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Chris Standring

(Disc One)

A new instrument can be a catalyst to creativity. Such was the case with Chris Standring and his recently acquired Benedetto Bambino archtop guitar. Although he maintains the heavy grooves and electronic embellishments that have become his trademark, Standring finds new inspiration on his latest recording, Ten (Ultimate Vibe), thanks to his new ax. "On previous recordings," relates the British-born, Los Angeles-based contemporary-jazz artist in the liner notes to his 10th album, "my solo often took a back seat to whatever the ‘vibe’ was. This time around, I decided to write music that was also a vehicle for me to really play." Vibes still abound, as Standring folds electronic effects into his sonic palette, combining subtle programming with live instrumentation supplied by superb sidemen such as bassists Andre Berry and Dan Lutz; drummers Chris Coleman and David Karasony; and a host of keyboardists, including Jeff Babko, Jim Wilson and Rodney Lee on Fender Rhodes, piano and organ, respectively. Standring showcases his silken tone and sparkling chops over an insistent vamp on "Parisian Blue," a bluesy cut that would have sounded at home on a Wes Montgomery album. Lutz, on acoustic bass, and drummer Karasony lay down the rhythmic foundation, while Dino Soldo supplies slinky textures on tenor sax and EWI.

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