Robben Ford's Tiger Walk: A Fiery Fusion of Rock and Jazz
Robben Ford is a renowned guitarist who has explored various genres of music, from blues to jazz to rock. His 1997 album Tiger Walk showcases his versatility and creativity in a fusion of rock and jazz-rock styles. The album features a stellar cast of musicians, including keyboardist Bernie Worrell, saxophonist Bob Malach, drummer Steve Jordan, and bassist Charley Drayton.
The album consists of 10 original compositions by Ford, plus two bonus tracks recorded live at Yoshi's in Oakland, California. The songs range from the funky opener \"In The Beginning\" to the soulful ballad \"Red Lady With Cello\" to the hard-rocking title track \"Tiger Walk\". Ford's guitar playing is fiery, inventive, and expressive throughout, displaying his mastery of tone, technique, and improvisation. He also sings on two tracks, a cover of Ann Peebles' \"I Can't Stand The Rain\" and a bluesy rendition of Ray Charles' \"Don't Let The Sun Catch You Crying\".
Tiger Walk is a highly recommended album for fans of Robben Ford and anyone who appreciates guitar-driven instrumental music. It is available in CD and digital formats from various online platforms. You can also listen to some samples of the album on YouTube.
The album received positive reviews from critics and fans alike, who praised Ford's guitar skills and musical diversity. Robert Spencer of All About Jazz wrote that \"Ford's artistry is undeniable and shown to good effect throughout this recording\" and that \"Tiger Walk is as solid an outing as has ever come from this man, who is certainly a master of his instrument and chosen genre\". Jim Newsom of AllMusic gave the album four stars out of five and compared it to Jeff Beck's classic instrumental albums Blow by Blow and Wired. He also noted that \"the rhythms recall James Brown and Worrell's alma mater, the P-Funk gang, as often as they do those of a hard rock band\".
Ford also performed some of the songs from Tiger Walk live, as evidenced by the two bonus tracks on the CD version. These are \"Don't Let The Sun Catch You Crying\", a Ray Charles song that Ford sings with soulful emotion, and \"Chevrolet\", a blues standard that Ford delivers with gusto. Both tracks were recorded at Yoshi's in Oakland, California, in 1997, and feature Ford's bandmates from the Blue Line: Roscoe Beck on bass and Tom Brechtlein on drums.
Tiger Walk is a testament to Robben Ford's musical vision and virtuosity. It is an album that will appeal to fans of rock, jazz, funk, and blues alike. It is also an album that showcases Ford's ability to create memorable melodies and grooves with his guitar, without the need for words.
In an interview with All About Jazz, Ford explained the inspiration behind Tiger Walk and his musical approach. He said that he wanted to make an album that was \"more about the guitar\" and that he was influenced by his experience of playing with Miles Davis in the 1980s. He also said that he was inspired by the music of Jimi Hendrix, James Brown, and Sly Stone, and that he wanted to create a \"funky groove\" with his bandmates. He described his guitar style as \"a combination of blues, jazz, and rock\" and said that he tried to \"play with a lot of emotion and expression\".
Tiger Walk was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Rock Instrumental Performance in 1998 for the song \"In The Beginning\". The album also received critical acclaim from various publications, such as Guitar Player, JazzTimes, and Down Beat. The album was praised for its musical diversity, energy, and creativity, as well as Ford's impressive guitar skills. Some critics also noted the similarities between Tiger Walk and Jeff Beck's instrumental albums, which Ford acknowledged as an influence.
Tiger Walk is a classic album that showcases Robben Ford's talent and versatility as a guitarist and composer. It is an album that appeals to fans of different genres of music, from rock to jazz to funk to blues. It is also an album that demonstrates Ford's ability to fuse these genres into a cohesive and original sound. Tiger Walk is an album that deserves to be heard by anyone who appreciates great guitar music. aa16f39245