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Wood and Strings is “Seventy minutes of clever, subtle, inventive music”

By: Leonid Auskern

For many years I have been listening to American guitarist John Stein (all his CDs are on Whaling City Sound and invariably fall into our “CD-Reviews”) and he never ceases to amaze with every new work. This time it’s a duet album, where bass player Dave Zinno is John’s partner.

The story of this project is told in the liner notes to the album by Stein himself (besides his notes, there is also a great text from John Thomas, not the first time commenting on Stein’s work). In 2016, Stein signed a contract for a month of performances at a restaurant in New Bedford, Massachusetts (the city where the Whaling City Sound label is based). John’s friend and label owner, Neal Weiss, recommended Dave Zinno as a duet partner. The two musicians “fused” so successfully, that the idea to record a joint album was born. Some of it was recorded live at the restaurant, in the morning before its official opening. Then a few weeks later, the musicians moved to Stein’s home studio, where they finished the work with the help of the classy sound engineer Antonio Oliart Ros. So the album “Wood and Strings” was born.

 
“Wood and strings” – that’s what John and Dave called it, meaning their instruments: guitar and double bass. I would call it “Strings and Fingers” rather: it was the touch of the sensitive, understanding, and able fingers of the musicians that gave birth to the magic miracle of this wonderful music. The album contains 14 songs: a few of Stein’s compositions, some standards, and one song of Zinno’s. The album can be savored as a delicious dish, if mainstream jazz is the “kitchen” you like. Stein has long been considered one of the foremost guitarists in this genre. In Dave Zinno, he found a worthy partner. “Up and at ‘Em” and “Switch-a-roo” (composed by Stein), and “Beatrice” by Sam Rivers are highlights. Of course, there was a place in the program for Brazilian jazz, a type of music for which Stein has very warm feelings: “Modinha” from de Moraes and Jobim fit the bill. Seventy minutes of clever, subtle, inventive music is “Wood and Strings,” at your service!
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To read the full review, translated click here 
To buy Wood and Strings, click here
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O’s Place reviews Stein’s ‘Wood and Strings’ as “fresh and enjoyable”

John SteinWood and Strings  5/4

O’s Notes: This is a duo between guitarist John Stein and bassist Dave Zinno. It’s a combination of Wood & Strings that comes together really, really nicely. Whether they are playing proven standards or originals, it is fresh and enjoyable. The pair work well together finishing off each other’s phrases almost like a seasoned couple. Just sit back and enjoy the ride, it’s delightful!
Purchase the album here.
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7/10: Jazz Quad Reviews John Stein and Dave Zinno’s “Wood and Strings”

For many years I’ve been listening to American guitarist John Stein (all his CDs go to Whaling City Sound and invariably get into our “CD-Reviews”) and he never ceases to amaze with every new work. This time it’s a duet album, where John’s bass player Dave Cinneau became a partner.

The story of this project was told in liner notes to the album by Stein himself (besides his notes, there is also a great text from John Thomas, not the first time commenting on the work of Stein). In 2016, Stein signed a contract for a month’s performances at one of the restaurants in New Bedford, Massachusetts (in this city the Whaling City Sound label is based). An old friend of John, the chief of the label named Neil Weis, recommended him as a partner to Dave Cinneau. All the “merged” so successfully, the musicians so approached each other that the idea was born to record a joint album. Some of it was recorded live, in the same restaurant, in the morning, before its official opening, and then, in a couple of weeks, the musicians moved to Stein’s home studio, where they finished the work with the help of the classy sound engineer Antonio Oliart Ros. So the album Wood and Strings was born.

“Wood and strings” – that’s what John and Dave called him, meaning his instruments, guitar and double bass. I would call it “Strings and Fingers” rather: it was the touch of the sensitive, all understanding and all able fingers of the musicians that created the magic miracle of wonderful music. The album contained 14 songs: Stein’s plays, standards and one song for Song for Now. The album can be savored as a delicious dish, if this “kitchen”, that is, mainstream jazz, you like. Stein has long and fairly been considered one of the elite guitarists of this trend. In the person of Zinno, he found a worthy partner. Up and at ‘Em, Switch-a-roo (Stein’s plays), Beatrice from Sam Rivers – above all praise. Of course, there was a place in the program and Brazilian jazz, to which Stein has very warm feelings: Modinha from de Moraes and Jobim album just decorated. Seventy minutes of clever, subtle, inventive music is Wood and Strings, at your service!

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Whaling City Sound Reviews in Cadence July Issue

A quick note about TERRY GIBBS’, 92 YEARS YOUNG: JAMMIN’AT THE GIBBS HOUSE [Whaling City Sound wsc 092]. Gibbs was brought out of retirement to make this recording [4/16] in his living room with a quartet [Gerry Gibbs-drm, John Campbell-p, Mike Gurrola-drm] playing 15 mostly originals [77:53]. Gibbs has slowed down from the frenetic pace with which he often played. The result is more gravitas and a lovely warm and laid back session on which all excel. Special mention of Campbell’s work and its many surprises. Very hip.

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Also from Whaling Sound comes WOOD AND STRINGS [WCS 093], a relaxed duet with JOHN STEIN [gtr] and  DAVE ZINNO [b]. As with the Gibbs album, comes a full program of music [14 tracks standards & originals-71:37], a relaxed ambience, nicely packaged with meaningful liners. Professional and  un-perfunctory.

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