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“Jimmy Earl’s a rather prestigious go-to guy. When Chick Corea, Pat Metheny, Pino Daniele, Robben Ford, and a coterie of others need an ace bassist, they all go to Earl . . . you’re in for some high-tone fusion.” — Mark S. Tucker, FAME
In 2012 Severn Records re-released Jimmy Kimmel Live! bassist Jimmy Earl’s self-titled solo album, Jimmy Earl. Originally released in 1995, Jimmy Earl features world-renowned players David Batteau, Mitchel Forman, Frank Gambale, Deron Johnson, Gary Novak, Rique Pantoja, Randy Roos, Steve Tavaglione and Dave Weckl. In addition to Jimmy’s beautiful six-string bass rendition of Ravel’s “Pavane for a Dead Princess,” the album includes 5 self-penned originals, the standard “Falling Grace,” and two Randy Roos compositions “Number Five” and “Phil’s Bounce.”
About the tracks: “Dimi” is based on a diminished tonality; “Pantarehi” is a song about life’s changes; “Phil’s Bounce” and “Number Five” are two Randy Roos tunes we performed at Ryles Jazz Club in Boston with Randy’s band in the early eighties— I’ve always loved these compositions and feel proud to have them on this album. On “Number Five” I sequenced the synth bass and used a stock DX7 patch. The fretless is an old Fender. Dave Weckl recorded the drums at the Garage, Chatsworth. “Pavane” is a piece written by Maurice Ravel; I first heard this on classical guitarist Julian Bream’s record, The Art of Julian Bream when I studied classical guitar as a kid. I constructed this arrangement on bass while I passed the time during long days on the road with various funk bands. “Lavadeiras” is the name for Brazilian women who wash clothes by the river. They’re known to sing and gossip while they work. “Falling Grace” is one of the hardest tunes in the book! Maybe someday I will be able to play through these changes. “Marie’s Dilemma” is an improvised melody. I played a Warwick Alien acoustic bass guitar over a sequenced drum pattern. Using SMPTE time code, I went back and found some keyboard voicings that I liked. Mike Hyman added drums. I doubled the melody at the end and played a solo on a Fender fretless bass. — Jimmy Earl
Special thanks to the Earl’s, Woody Wahlen, Steve Hunt, Bruce Barlett, Randy Roos, Tiger Okoshi, Charlie Banacos, Hans Kullock, Hans-Peter Wilfer-Riboud, Mark and Clive at Trace, Stanley Clarke, Chick Corea and Gayle Moran, Ron Moss, Sonny Abelardo, Paul Zukoski, Yusuf Gandhi, Terry McVay, Dan Humann, Chris Jisi, Sunnie Paxson, John Beasley, and Mark Varney. Warm thanks to my beautiful wife Marie, and my wonderful daughter Kathryn. Extra special thanks to all the musicians who played so great on this project. To David Glasser at Airshow Mastering for his extraordinary job remastering.
I would like to thank the following manufacturers: Gallien Kreuger, Dean Markley Strings, Warwick Bass Guitars, Fender, Ken Smith Basses LTD, Trace Elliot, and Lehle pedals.
This music is dedicated to the memory of my grandparents, Margaret and James Earl and Ralph and Madeline Wentworth Tailby; our Weimaraner “Ghost”; and to Bobby Greene, a great saxophonist and friend.
Jimmy Earl: Bass (all tracks): Fretless Bass (tracks 1, 5), 5- and 6-String Basses (track 3), Synth Bass and Slap Bass (track 5); Guitar (track 1); Synths (tracks 1, 5, 7); Samples (track 7); Percussion Programming (tracks 7, 9); Keyboards (track 9)
Jeff Beal: Trumpet (track 1)
Deron Johnson: Fender Rhodes Electric Piano (tracks 1 and 7)
Mike Hyman: Drums/Drum Programming (tracks 1, 4 and 9)
Frank Gambale: Electric Guitar (track 2)
Steve Tavaglione: Horns and Woodwinds (tracks 2 and 10)
Gary Novak: Drums (tracks 2, 3, 7 and 10)
Rique Pantoja: Electric Piano (track 3)
Tom McMorran: Synths and String Arrangements (track 3); Electric Piano and Strings (track 10)
Cassio Duarte: Percussion (track 3)
Randy Roos: Guitar (track 5)
Dave Weckl: Drums (track 5)
Mitchel Forman: Electric Piano (track 5)
David Batteu: Vocals (track 7)
Michael Thompson: Guitars and Drum Programming (track 8)
Producer: Jimmy Earl
Engineered by Steve Sykes and David Kowal
Recorded at Beaker’s Sound Lab, Los Angeles, CA; The Garage, Chatsworth, CA; and Cocoa Butt Studio, Los Angeles, CA
Mixed by Steve Sykes assisted by Mike Stern at Mad Hatter Studios, Los Angeles, CA
Mastered by David Glasser, Airshow Mastering, Boulder, CO
Original CD Design by Lyons Digital Media, adapted for digipak by Al Brandtner, Brandtner Design