Walter Beasley,
For Her
(Heads Up, 2005)

Walter Beasley is a master at making the saxophone speak. The instrument is an acquired taste -- there are not many solo saxophonists whose names spring to mind. If there is to be one it will be Beasley.

The notes tell us that this set of 11 tracks is in essence a musical journey through a romance.

The opening track, "She's All That," was composed as he embarked on a new romance. Sadly for him (but perhaps of benefit to the audience) the relationship did not blossom, but new romance is always around the corner and the succeeding tracks bring us on that journey with the varying emotions portrayed in music.

As a personal album for the writer/performer, it has an added spark in that all listeners will have run the same race at some time in life -- or will do so in the future. Here is a soundtrack for that journey.

This is an album where the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. There are good tracks on offer, but the album succeeds best as a sort of ensemble piece.

Set aside the time; set the mood and enjoy this musical tale.

by Nicky Rossiter
20 January 2007

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