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New Pat Metheny Group CD Due in January

Early next year the Pat Metheny Group will release The Way Up, an ambitious 68-minute multi-sectioned composition to be followed by a world tour.

The Way Up is the PMG’s 12th studio recording, following 2002’s Warner Bros. effort Speaking of Now and is the band’s first for Nonesuch Records. The Way Up features the same personnel from those sessions with the addition of harmonica-player Gregoire Maret. PMG co-founder Lyle Mays and 1981 addition Steve Rodby return as veteran Group members on keyboards and bass, respectively, with Speaking of Now trumpeter-vocalist Cuong Vu and drummer Antonio Sanchez also returning. Richard Bona, while no longer a member of the group, contributes percussion on several tracks. Mallet cymbalist Dave Samuels also guests on the album.

The addition of Gregoire Maret came after Metheny (pictured) heard Maret’s recordings and saw the harmonica player accompany singer Cassandra Wilson on a live date. “He is one of those rare musicians whose talent transcends his instrument and you hear the sound of his spirit when he plays,” says Metheny in the album’s press release.

The composition is a collaboration between Metheny and Mays and focuses on diverse musical landscapes that interconnect in complex and interesting ways, providing exciting opportunities for improvisation. Sonically, the recording is in familiar PMG territory, with producer Metheny, co-producers Steve Rodby and Lyle Mays, and engineer Rob Eaton smoothing the sounds to a glossy New Age-finish.

The Way Up is slated for release on January 11, 2005. A world tour promoting the album will begin in February, with a two-night stint at New York’s Beacon Theater beginning on April 1. The group plans to perform selections from its rich repertoire in addition to The Way Up in its entirety.

For tour dates and more information on the album, visit

Originally Published