Steve Khan gained his initial reputation as a fusion guitarist, so this session (which has been reissued on CD) was a revelation to many when it was released. A rather introspective set of melodic music, the program is highlighted by an 18-and-a-half-minute, nine-song Thelonious Monk medley that is performed solo. Khan is actually the only performer throughout the date, although he uses overdubbing on some cuts ("In a Silent Way" has eight guitars).
Steve Khan gained his initial reputation as a fusion guitarist, so this session was a revelation to many when it was released. A rather introspective set of melodic music, the program is highlighted by an 18-and-a-half-minute, nine-song Thelonious Monk medley that is performed solo. Khan is actually the only performer throughout the date, although he uses overdubbing on some cuts ("In a Silent Way" has eight guitars).
Steve Khan has never been a shy guitarist, but in the commercial world he appears a bit diffident. This is probably why he makes one album a year or maybe one album sometimes every two or three years. But judging by the work on each, he is perfectionist. Consider Subtext which features not only exquisite repertory, but magnificently craftsmanship on each of the songs. His playing is of a remarkable gliding kind. Notes seem to roll off his strings in phrases that form wide arcs that carve the air with magnificent motifs and incredibly beautiful melisma.
Guitarist Steve Khan sounds quite laid-back throughout this set, even when soloing at his most passionate. He is featured in a wide variety of material and fares quite well in each setting. With bassist John Patitucci sometimes taking solo honors, Khan explores a Latinized version of "I Mean You" and an obscure Ornette Coleman tune ("Mr. and Mrs. People"), has features for flugelhornist Randy Brecker ("Face Value") and bass clarinetist Bob Mintzer (the Bitches Brew-inspired "El Faquir"), and modernizes one of his father's songs ("You're My Girl").
The title of this review is for the artist as well as this recording. Steve Kahn has been a vital and sustaining force in modern music for almost 40 years. He has played with the best musicians on the planet and has contributed to the jazz and latin jazz catalog with wonderful compostitions. He was the principal guitarist on Steely Dan's "Gaucho". "Crossings" is one of my favorite recordings. Kahn's deep respect as well as his creative brilliance make these standards shine. And I include his originals as standards. The band is fantastic, Dennis Chambers on drums; Anthony Jackson on electric contra-bass, and Manolo Badrena on percussion, with Michael Brecker on tenor on a few tracks.
Parting Shot represents a most special moment for Steve, because it is the first time that he has felt ready to present an entire recording dedicated to Latin Jazz. Anthony Jackson, Manolo Badrena, and Steve are together yet again, alongside their bandmate of 20 years, Dennis Chambers, where, joined by master Latin musicians, Marc Quinones and Bobby Allende, they have crafted these 10 pieces of music. It is their hope that everyone will enjoy the recording to the fullest.
Outstanding interplay between refined musicians, stunning sound quality, and great song writing. Plus the tracks flow seemlessly into each other as if making an empirical statement or telling a story.The genre is clearly jazz fusion, but elements of pure straight-ahead and latin jazz permeate throughout.
It has been a great pleasure for me to have a chance to collaborate with Steve Khan on his first solo album. I was constantly amazed at his knowledge of the entire spectrum of music. Steve's music signals a new era in jazz, combining the best elements of his rock, jazz & progressive background. It has been exciting watching it come to life on this record. ~ Bob James