Tim Willcox – Superjazzers Vol. 1

Product Description


Release date: December 1, 2011 (NINJAZZ 1101)

Saxophonist Tim Willcox’s debut album for Ninjazz Records features 9 unique and beautiful compositions performed by some of the Pacific NW’s most acclaimed musicians. Superjazzers Vol. 1 is the culmination of several years worth of writing and rehearsing with the idea of cultivating a true “group sound”. Influences vary from Keith Jarrett’s 70′s quartet albums to Elliott Smith, Ravel and John Coltrane.

CD Information:
Tim Willcox (tenor saxophone)
David Goldblatt (piano)
Bill Athens (acoustic bass)
Charlie Doggett (drums)

Track Listing:
1. Life On Earth (Willcox)
2. Artland (Goldblatt)
3. The Rain Before It Falls (Willcox)
4. Bagel’s Revenge (Willcox)
5. Serduszko (Willcox)
6. New Wisconsin State Song (Athens)
7. Vast Crap Perfume Universe (Willcox)
8. Facing North (Goldblatt)
9. Moab (Willcox)

Recorded August 2010
Engineered, mixed, and mastered by Randy Rollofson
Produced by Tim Willcox, David Goldblatt, Bill Athens, and Charlie Doggett
Cover art and design: Randy Emberlin and Donald Wallace

Personal Website:


  1. :

    “I quickly recognized Tim as being one of those musicians who have something a little extra; something that made him stand out from the rest.

    The tunes here are beautiful; they all inhabit their own little worlds yet they are part of a bigger universe.

    His playing here is an organic extension of the songs. He doesn’t fall into the trap of trying to play all the things he’s practiced. You don’t feel him trying to impress you. Instead, his saxophone is a thread in the musical fabric.

    Bassist Bill Athens and drummer Charlie Doggett both play with a maturity and control that allows them to let the music breathe. David Goldblatt is one of my favorite piano players on the planet. His beautiful sound and textures make the music sparkle.

    Keep in mind that this music bears repeated listening. I enjoyed it more the second time. Soulful, thoughtful, elegant, mature, lyrical, earthy were some of the words that came to mind while listening.”

  2. :

    Published on

    A scenic and vibrant city nestled in a landscape of lush scenery, Portland, Oregon is not exactly known for its jazz scene. However, Superjazzers’ Vol. 1 represents the city with a depth and refinement normally associated with the jazz greats in New York, as well as other major jazz towns.

    Although group name implies a silly sense of sarcasm, don’t be fooled. Instead, it belies an emotional depth, conveyed in the set’s nine original compositions.

    Superjazzers—a saxophone/piano/bass/drums ensemble—will appeal to fans of pianist Keith Jarrett’s 1970s European Quartet. Tim Willcox’s saxophone sings and, at times, broods passionately and inventively in the vein of Jan Garbarek, as well as modern master Rick Margitza, while pianist David Goldblatt carries shades of subtle piano icons such as Jarrett and Fred Hersch. Holding down the harmonic and rhythmic force of the group, bassist Bill Athens and drummer Charlie Doggett work together masterfully, to establish a lush and fluid backdrop that ebbs and flows flawlessly with the quartet’s dramatic musical landscape.

    Although the album is consistently strong, standout tracks include the gorgeous, melodically shifting waltz, “The Rain Before it Falls,” as well as the high-energy jaunt, “Vast Crap Perfume Universe.” Unlike many jazz albums, this is anything but a straight- ahead blowing session. An unmistakable atmosphere and free-flowing approach tie the tunes together, ensuring that not a single track sounds out of place within the set.

    Boasting world-class compositions as well as a strong sense of modern jazz history, Superjazzers’Vol. 1 forges its own path in the realm of contemporary improvised music.

  3. :

    Published on

    Album: ‘Superjazzers’ to the rescue! Tim Willcox saves the universe from Kenny G. Not really. The Dead Kenny G’s might have gotten there before him but, we love the concept.

    On his site, Tim Willcox states clearly, “My name is Tim Willcox. I play saxophone and write music.” True that. His new album is called Superjazzers. Why in the world would a serious musician have his album cover feature a cartoon of the whole band in cartoon hero outfits? And guess who that is in the heroic pose, saving the day with a tenor sax?

    Maybe you don’t know a lot of musicians. Here’s his explanation:

    Brian Levy, an old friend of mine (and fantastic saxophonist) used to use the phrase “Hey Superjazzer”, whenever he greeted me. I always imagined a group of nerdy jazz-dorks who would turn into superheroes in the evenings. They’d repel from the catwalk above a Kenny G concert with their instruments (don’t ask me how this would work. They’re superheroes!) while playing crazy free-jazz. Kenny G’s band would run off-stage and barricade themselves in an air-conditioned dressing room. The audience would be freed from “Kenny G-mind-control” and go out to Tower records and buy a box set of Coltrane or Miles albums.

    Makes sense to me.

    Willcox plays tenor saxophone, David Goldblatt is on piano, Bill Athens on bass and Charlie Doggett on drums. They also all produced the album. They are some of Portland’s finest Jazz musicians.

    Willcox was somewhat of a prodigy having earned several national honors, winning A Downbeat Magazine award as well a being named a Presidential Scholar of the Arts in 1993. He was also the recipient of the Stan Getz / Clifford Brown fellowship, presented by the National Endowment for the Arts.

    He studied at William Paterson University where he got the chance to study with jazz greats Kenny Burrell, Harold Mabern, Vic Juris, Rufus Reid, Steve Wilson, John Riley, as well as taking lessons outside of school from Rick Margitza, Lee Konitz, and the NY Phil’s David Demsey. After graduating in 1998, Willcox moved to New York City where he played with Marc Copland, Jeff Hirschfield, Vic Juris, Reid Anderson, Ben Monder, Matt Pennman, Scott Mclemore, John Herbert, Michael Kanan, and many other acclaimed musicians.

    Now he’s back in Oregon and in demand. One measure of a musician’s ability in Oregon is if David Friesen uses him. David Friesen uses him a lot. Plus this who’s who of Oregon (and international) Jazz: Randy Porter, Alan Jones, Bobby Torres, George Mitchell, Gary Hobbs, Gary Versace, John Gross, PDXV (he’s a member) and Victor Noriega.

    No need to try to categorize Willcox’s kind of Jazz, it’s in the tradition but stretches the tradition, or perhaps remolds it to his liking. You’ll like it too.

  4. :

    Published on
    [Polish Jazz Site]

    Saksofonista Tim Wilcox po wielu latach pracy nad uzyskaniem satysfakcjonującego brzmienia tworzonego przez kwartet jazzowy, wreszcie w 2011 roku zdecydował się wraz z trojgiem wyjątkowych muzyków pozyskanych do współpracy wejść do studia nagraniowego. Efektem jest wyśmienita płyta pod intrygującym tytulem ”Superjazzers Vol.1”, wydana w okładce utrzymanej w komiksowej konwencji, którą zdobią rysunkowe podobizny instrumentalistów. Pośród barwnych postaci poza Wilcoxem, znajdziemy podobizny pianisty Davida Golblatta, kontrabasisty Billa Athensa oraz perkusisty Charliego Dogetta. Ciekawostką jest, iż pełna głębi, ambitna i wyrafinowana muzyka wypełniająca krążek nijak ma się do pstrokatej okładki.

    Większość kompozycji to dzieła samego Tima Wilcoxa, w trzech przypadkach jednak w roli kompozytorów do głosu dochodzą także: pianista David Golblatt (”Artland” i ”Facing North”) oraz basista Bill Athens (”New Wisconsin State Song”).

    ”Artland” to piękna impresyjna ballada ozdobiona wyśmienitym ornamentem pod postacią rozbudowanej solówki kontrabasu. Piękne partie fortepianu kompozytora tego utworu Davida Goldblatta, synkopująca perkusja i oczywiście tenor Wilcoxa ”trzymający w ryzach” całą konstrukcję tej urzekającej kompozycji.

    ”The Rain Before It Falls” to z kolei oparty na rytmie jazzowego walca temat pełen swobodnych partii tenorowych jak i doskonałych indywidualnie kreowanych przez fortepian i kotnrabas ścieżek melodycznych.

    Kontrabas Billa Athensa w doskonałym stylu zdominował środkową część ośmiominutowego nagrania ”Basel’s Revenge” zwieńczonego szaleńczymi partiami improwizującego Willcoxa. Zrobiło się naprawdę gorąco!

    Na płycie ”jazzowych supermanów” doszukamy się zapożyczeń i inspiracji pochodzących z tak znamienitych źródeł jak Keith Jarrett, Fred Hersch, John Coltrane czy Jan Garbarek. Sięganie po sprawdzone wzorce klasyków to jednak tylko połowa wykorzystanych środków, które sprawiają iż ”Superjazzers” robi tak wielkie wrażenie. Druga połowa to niezmierzona inwencja i fantazja instrumentalistów połączona z mistrzowskim warsztatem.

    Piękne, pełne liryki melodie, muzyka bardzo wykwintna i wysmakowana.

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