Friday, September 15, 2017

Pat Martino - 1997 "All Sides Now"

All Sides Now is an album by guitarist Pat Martino which was recorded in 1996–97 and first released on the Blue Note label. The album pairs Martino with notable guitarists from across the musical spectrum.

Veteran Pat Martino is teamed up with a variety of different fellow guitarists on this interesting if not quite essential release. Martino matches wits with guitarist Charlie Hunter (who on Stevie Wonder's "Too High" often sounds like an organist), Tuck Andress, Kevin Eubanks, Les Paul ("I'm Confessin'"), Mike Stern and Michael Hedges. In addition, Cassandra Wilson sings Joni Mitchell's "Both Sides Now" accompanied by Martino, and rock guitarist Joe Satriani tries to sit in on two numbers (with indifferent results). A decent effort, but not up to Pat Martino's most significant releases.

Pat Martino's 1997 album All Sides Now features performances by (among others) Les Paul, Mike Stern, Tuck Andress, Joe Satriani, Michael Hedges, Charlie Hunter, Kevin Eubanks and Cassandra Wilson.

After the Los Angeles studio dates, Martino traveled north to the seaside town of Mendocino where guitarist Michael Hedges has his home studio. This was a special rendezvous for Martino. Years earlier before his brain aneurysms had been diagnosed, he spent a period of time in locked psychiatric wards undergoing shock therapy to alleviate the memory loss and severe headaches he was suffering. "My friendship with Michael goes back to that crucial time in my life. He used to come into the ward where I was confined and play his guitar for me. I don't think Michael ever thought we'd play together let alone record together. Doing this session was a major breakthrough in our relationship. It was a dream come true to work with him."

The pair duet on Hedges' "Two Days Old," a pensive piece from his album Aerial Boundaries. [Correction…Breakfast in the Field.—Ed.] Martino plays one of Hedges' nylon-stringed guitars while Hedges plays steel-stringed acoustic. The number is a jewel of virtuoso guitar playing. While in Northern California, rock guitarist Joe Satriani traveled to Hedges' studio and recorded two songs with Martino. "Ellipsis" features gripping rock-edged and blues-tinged improvisations while the end track of the CD, "Never and After,"is a calming tune with ripples of guitar beauty. "I had no idea that Joe was interested in my music and my style of guitar playing," Martino says. "We hit it off and improvised with dignity, even though we're from two different polarities."

Track listing:
All compositions by Pat Martino except as indicated

"Too High" (Stevie Wonder) - 5:03
"Two of a Kind" - 5:54
"Progression" - 5:36
"I'm Confessin' (That I Love You)" (Doc Daugherty, Al J. Neiburg, Ellis Reynolds) - 4:41
"Ellipsis" (Martino, Joe Satriani) - 3:09
"Both Sides, Now" (Joni Mitchell) - 3:53
"Ayako" - 7:46
"Two Days Old" (Michael Hedges) - 5:17
"Outrider" - 7:43
"Never and After" (Satriani) - 2:54


Pat Martino - guitar
Charlie Hunter - guitar (track 1)
Tuck Andress - guitar (track 2)
Kevin Eubanks - guitar (track 3)
Les Paul - guitar (track 4)
Joe Satriani - guitar (track 5 and 10)
Mike Stern - guitar (track 7 and 9)
Michael Hedges - guitar (track 8), percussion (track 5)
Scott Colley - bass (track 7 and 9)
Paul Nowinski - bass (track 4)
Scott Amendola - drums (track 1)
Ben Perowsky - drums (track 7 and 9)
Jeff Hirshfield - drums (track 10)
Cassandra Wilson - vocals (track 6)