Release: June 16, 2023
Any jazz fusion fan will recognize the names Joe Zawinul, Wayne Shorter, Herbie Hancock and Marcus Miller, and likely their connective thread of cutting their teeth with Miles Davis before they became icons themselves.
Yet those four fusion visionaries have another thread — they’ve also recorded with South Florida-based guitarist and composer Randy Bernsen. His 11th studio album ‘Heart Mind and Soul’ is set to release on the 16th of June on Jericho Jams.
Bernsen’s debut record in 1986 featured an absolute dream-team of household names – Jaco Pastorius, Herbie Hancock, and Peter Erskine. In the years to follow, the guitarist toured the world and recorded alongside Marcus Miller, Michael Brecker, Toots Thielemans, Wayne Shorter and many more.
In what is increasingly becoming an era of tribute acts, Bernsen continues to prove a highly-original voice as both composer and guitarist with this six-track release, which he says could be the first of a few this year.
The guitarist’s bandmates boast an equally impressive collective CV – including saxophonists Bob Mintzer (Yellowjackets, Jaco Pastorius) and Bob Franceschini (Mike Stern, Victor Wooten), bassist Jimmy Haslip (Allan Holdsworth, Oz Noy), trumpeters Dan Davis and Derek Sims, keyboardist George Whitty, and siblings Uzi Nizri (organ & piano) and David Nizri (drums).
The opening tracks “Prodigal Son” and “With You Always” display Bernsen’s melodic prowess as both guitarist and arranger, while “Billy Gates Blues” unearths the searing, rootsy influence of Jimi Hendrix and Eric Clapton. With stylistic references to 70’s fusion records by the likes of Weather Report or Davis’ iconic Bitches Brew, Bernsen takes the sound to a contemporary place with guitar-synthesizer technology, conjuring up the sounds of horns, keyboards and steel drums.
Randy Bernsen | Guitar, composition
Uzi Nizri | Organ & Piano
David Nizri | Drums
Jimmy Haslip | Bass
Bob Franceschini | Saxophones
Bob Mintzer | Saxophone
Derek Sims | Trumpet
Dan Davis | Trumpet
With You Always
Billy Gates Blues
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