Become a member and get exclusive access to articles, live sessions and more!
Start Your Free Trial

Ernie Watts: Analog Man

The title refers to Watts’ saying, “I’m an analog man in a digital world.” Well, if we’re talking the absence of electronic instruments on this album, the statement is true. But if we’re talking antiquated saxophony, forget it. The tenor and soprano man is as hip as advanced digital technology, and his digits produce prodigious technique throughout this album, on which his acoustic compatriots include pianist Christof Saenger, bassist Rudi Engel and drummer Heinrich Koebberling.

Recorded in Cologne, Germany, the album reinforces Watts’ position as one of the heavyweight successors to the John Coltrane legacy of instrumental mastery and postbop conception. He has an authoritative delivery, a strong tone and a forceful, sometimes gritty vibrato. (It’s impossible to hear that vibrato and not think of his albums with Charlie Haden’s Quartet West, but this CD is another bag.)

Start Your Free Trial to Continue Reading

Become a JazzTimes member to explore our complete archive of interviews, profiles, columns, and reviews written by music's best journalists and critics.
Originally Published