Album of the Week – ‘Walkin’ Shoes’ by Dan Barnett

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‘Walkin’ Shoes’ by Dan Barnett is Eastside Radio’s Album of the Week.

This week our featured album at the station is very important not only is it full of great music, great talent and originality the artist himself is one of the most experienced musicians that volunteers here at Eastside Radio. Bringing us his seventh album Dan has brought his big band on board with him again, filling the stage is 14 of some of the most talented musicians Sydney has to offer. With all of this talent coming together and with Barnett leading the way with his vocals and trombone we are in for a real treat.

Launched on the 6th of November last year we get a total of 12 tracks across the record that gives us that big band swing sounding flame as well as some solos from the piano, sax, guitars and of course Dan’s trusty trombone. Not only is Dan singing some superb vocals he also comes in with his other gifted talent which is swinging the trombone in a highly unique and enjoyable way. Dan Barnett’s big band have given us some remarkable Jazz standards as well as originals, we get some traditional ballads, we get some Afro-cuban sounds and we get some funk all on top of some great vocalists.

As the 14 member big band wasn’t enough talent we get some very special guests featuring across the album as Eloi d’or award-winning vocalist Tricia Evy from France works on the record. We also get a host of Australian arrangers coming together for the project such as, Kelly Ottawa who won the 2016 Jazzgroove Mothership Composition Competition then you also have Evan Loaning who is widely known for his piano skills as well as arranging, Tim Oram who has worked on several musicals so he knows all there needs to know about the big band vibe and also guest appearing on the album is Andrew Robertson who is highly dedicated to his love of Jazz and music in general as he is a Jazz educator passing his talents onto the next generation.

If you are a listener to Eastside Radio then you will know that Dan Barnett co-hosts ‘Blow’ the Thursday afternoon show with Matt McMahon, well simply by listening to the man you know that he has an extensive knowledge of Jazz, with the genre being so broad and with different rhythms and tones always appearing it is no surprise that Dans’ music also expresses a vast knowledge of the genre and lets him and his band have room to roam that gives us some interesting sounds.

With all the tracks cruising through at a nice smooth tone the title track off the album ‘Walkin’ Shoes’ lets us hear the scope of Barnett’s voice, vocals that Gerry Mulligan would be proud of to hear over this wonderful rendition. It is a nice easy listening number a great track to kick off the album album as it shows us what talent to be expecting. If you want to hear some fine trombone playing then ‘I Don’t Worry ‘Bout a Thing’ is where you will hear Barnett show off both his talents as it starts off with some energetic vocals then mid-way we get a solo by the man himself and the to finish out the track we get some up beat vocals again as well as backing singers coming in to make for a real uplifting sound.

For some real smoothness and female vocals you have guest singer Tricia Evy singing just beautiful lyrics on ‘All too Soon’, followed then by ‘Come Rain or Come Shine’ which on this one we hear Evy sing to a more fast paced song that just shows the diversity of this highly talented artist. Barnett comes into this track a third of the way through so we get a nice duet mixture here and some lovely vocal work as they sing the title of the track and bounce off each other from line to line, with both artists leaving the big band to work their magic and with some nicely paced guitar strums for both bopping vocalists to come back in and finish the piece off lovely.

With ‘Walkin’ Shoes’ we get an album that truly shows how to keep a big band in perfect harmony, Barnett is definitely   someone who understands the genre as he gives each track motion to breath and flow as it should be, we don’t have strict accordance for each musician to follow we get that big band flame that livens up the air. Then with band leader himself Barnett it is great to know that we have someone so talented that is a part of the station at Eastside and a part of your community, from his singing to his trombone playing from his arrangement to the thought gone into the album it is no wonder that he is leading the way in the Australian Jazz scene. If you want to hear the mans voice tune in to ‘Blow’ on 89.7FM every Thursday of if you want to hear the real deal go along and see The Dan Barnett Big Band on the first Sunday of every month from 4pm at The workers bar in the Unity Hall Hotel Balmain.

Track Listing

1. ‘Walkin’ Shoes’ (G. Mulligan)
2. ‘I Don’t Worry ‘Bout A Thing’ (M. Allison)
3. ‘I’m Old Fashioned’ (J. Kern)
4. ‘Tin Tin Deo’ (J. Gillespie)
5. ‘All Too Soon’ (D. Ellington
6. ‘Come Rain or Come Shine’ (H. Arlen)
7. ‘I’m Getting Sentimental Over You’ (G. Bassman, N. Washington)
8. ‘Street of Dreams’ (V. Young)
9. ‘Good Times Bad Times’ (Cranney/Barnett)
10. ‘Fly Like An Eagle’ (S. Miller)
11. ‘It Don’t Mean A Thing’ (D. Ellington)
12. ‘They Can’t Take That Away From Me’ (Gershwin)

Artist Listing

You can follow The Dan Barnett Big Band here or via their FACEBOOK page. For an extended listen to the album, tune in on Thursday from 1.30PM – 2PM for ‘Album of the Week’ with Josh Crosbie. Don’t forget to also listen out for your opportunity to win a copy of ‘Walkin’ Shoes’ all week. You must be a supporter to win so make sure to sign up here. You can also stream the station here.

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