Renowned saxophonist Jay Patten returns with immaculate collection of jazz covers and original compositions
(Published: September 23, 2011)
September 22, 2011 (Nashville, TN) Written by Robert Sutton. Saxophonist Jay Patten knows the presence of greatness. As a vocalist for the Glenn Miller Orchestra and currently the music director for country icon Crystal Gayle, Patten has breathed the air of stardom. But on Crystal Nights, the spotlight falls on Patten himself and shines brightly with an immaculate collection of jazz covers and original compositions.
There is a reason why Patten has shared the stage with some of music's legendary talents including Ray Charles, Lee Greenwood, and Janis Ian. Actually, to say that those household names welcomed Patten into their lives for a single purpose is a grand understatement. Patten is a gifted composer as well as a well-skilled and emotionally charged multi-instrumentalist.
Patten opens the album with the silky-smooth grooves of "Ready for the Time to Get Better." The track's moody, cinematic guitar intro gradually eases into Patten's soulful sax, and it's a breathtaking transition. It feels as if Patten is being carried off by the music itself; his playing sounds free, unchained, creating a sense of liberation that can only be described as heavenly.
However, Patten never settles on one tone, which makes the album endlessly delightful in its unpredictability. "Bussin' to Memphis" is equipped with a slightly funky beat while Patten's version of Hank Williams, Sr.'s "I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry" is just as moving as the original country hit but redone as a mournful saxophone lullaby. Patten sings, too, offering a warm, hopeful voice on "Freedom Song" and then crooning with blue-eyed soul with Gayle herself on the bubbly closer, "Memories Are Made of This."
Once signed to Columbia Records in the ‘70s, this new album is a reminder that Patten is a potent force in front as well as the back of the stage; that much is crystal clear.
More Information: http://www.jaypatten.com