My Favorite Songs


ARTIST: Phillipe Saisse Acoustic Trio
Acoustic Piano, Fender Rhodes, Wurlitzer Piano,
Vibraphone, Marimba, Shaker & Triangle : Philippe Saisse

Acoustic Bass : David Finck
Drums : Scooter Warner
Percussions : Charles Don Alias (1.2.6.)
Vocal : Nneka Morton (3.6.)

RECORDING:
Acoustic Piano, Fender Rhodes, Wurlitzer Piano,
Vibraphone, Marimba, Shaker & Triangle : Philippe Saisse

Acoustic Bass : David Finck
Drums : Scooter Warner
Percussions : Charles Don Alias (1.2.6.)
Vocal : Nneka Morton (3.6.)

DESCRIPTION:
Gershwin's "An American In Paris" is a song that humorously presents emotions of an American visiting Paris, but Philippe Saisse is a Frenchman in New York. Using the City as his home base, he examines the world without rose-colored glasses. He has become one of a number of global musicians who supply intoxicating and fashionable music with a touch of high spirit.


From the early '80s, Saisse has been active on the front lines of the
contemporary jazz scene. He is one of the premiere keyboardists / composers / arrangers / producers in New York City. Saisse backs up stars such as The Rolling Stones, David Bowie and Chaka Khan, just to name a few. Playing with premiere jazz players such as Al Di Meola, David Sanborn and Al Jarreau, he is on a first-call list as a session player and his beautiful arrangements are very much in demand. He has built up a reputation for his rich musicality and solid technique. Having a keen sense of understanding for the music of the times, and a flexible and aesthetic sensibility, he can dig up the "diamond in the rough." This is the secret of the modern "Saisse" sound. It incorporates what is hot in urban sophistication.


My Favorite Songs is Saisse's sixth album in a career that spans more than 24 years. Known for being a contemporary keyboardist, Saisse goes back to being a pianist, and plays a number of his favorite tunes in acoustic jazz format. The album is a collection of songs with a contemporary sensibility as well as music that is classic and elegant.


"Piano trio was always a challenge that I wanted to tackle. However, that requires maturity as an artist. Now that I'm more mature and have a better understanding of myself, I feel that the time has finally come to allow me to do this" reflects Saisse. He added, "During the recording sessions, I was able to rediscover the joy of playing the piano."


The people who join Saisse and allow him to play freely are David Finck and Scooter Warner. Finck is a bass player who excels in mainstream jazz. Because he likes Brazilian music so much, he plays harmony with beautiful coloration. He can play an acoustic bass and make it sound like an electric bass. Added to the mix is a young drummer named Scooter Warner. Scooter comes from the Hip-Hop world who can also play jazz. His funky groove can change instantaneously, bringing excitement. The three become one and, together, redefine how delicious acoustic jazz can be.


With nothing to hold back the artistry, this intoxicating work has Saisse's trademark pop feeling infused throughout. The work opens up new possibilities in this traditional format, known as jazz piano.

ADDITIONAL ALBUM NOTES:

  1. Poem for # 15
    Finck's beautiful bass starts this S. Kuhn original (original title "Crabfeathers"). The translucent piano playing is deftly matched by the non-jazz-like drumming.
  2. Michelle
    This song features Saisse's talents as he arranges the Beatles' classic number in a contemporary jazz flavor. The mellow Fender Rhodes adds a nice accent to the song.
  3. Once
    This is an original by Saisse featuring a newcomer vocalist based in New York by the name of Nneka. Saisse's melody making shines here.
  4. Summer Breeze
    The hit song by Seals and Crofts, later made popular again by The Isley Brothers, is played in smooth jazz fashion.
  5. I'm Not In Love
    This track is a tribute to the pianist and keyboardist, Richard Tee with a song by Saisse's favorite rock group, 10CC. The earthy and funky, yet warm piano playing shows the influence that Tee had on Saisse.
  6. Naturally
    This is a cover of Gilbert O'Sullivan's hit arranged in fusion style. Inspired by the strong rhythm section, Saisse treats us to great fun on the piano. The quality of art shines through in the familiar tune.
  7. Sorry Seems to be the Hardest Word
    A hidden album track classic from expert melody maker Elton John, played wistfully on solo piano. Listening to this introspective tune brings the listener back to bittersweet memories.
  8. Song for Jun
    This is a melodious ballad composed by Saisse when he was 18 years old. Saisse's capacity is on full display when he contrasts the delicate piano playing that expresses the slight murmur of the heart with the intelligent improvisation as the piece develops. A smooth bass solo by Finck is outstanding.
  9. Laura
    David Raskin wrote this ballad as a moody and romantic tune for his wife. The vibraphone solo that is played caressingly by Saisse is very heart warming.
  10. La Velse Des Lilas
    This is a very popular tune by France's premiere composer / pianist, Michelle LeGrande, who
    had a strong influence on Saisse. The lyricism and romance that flows from the piano is sweetly sorrowful and reverberates in your heart.
  11. About Time
    Nneka is back for a melody that makes you think it is Hip-Hop, with sharp bass playing of Finck. It is a contemporary piece that makes you almost forget that this is an acoustic trio.
  12. Song for Saisse
    A little known musician and a big fan of Saisse sent him this original composition. Saisse develops the melody spaciously amidst a strong fusion groove. The tune is likely to become a live performance favorite from its convincing performance.
  13. Como La Lluvia (Like the Rain)
    The meaning of this song "Like the Rain" offers praise to rain as it falls on earth, blessing
    everything on it. Saisse's talents on the mallet instruments is so evident that master mallet
    player, Gary Burton said to Saisse, "After I'm gone, you'll be the only one left."

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