First View


During Warren Hill's Smooth Jazz Cruise 2005 the passengers were delighted with nightly personal gifts like pencils, mugs, posters, caps, light sticks etc. Among these a very generous gift is worth mentioning, a Windsor Reflections CD Case containing his Pre-Release CD. The CD was produced by Warren Hill and André Berry. Warren had asked André to write songs for his new album. André was touring with Dave Koz as his bass player and his schedule was tight. But André reissued in working out the songs on his Apple Powerbook during the drives between the diverse venues. Often Dave Koz asked: "Do you do that notebook-thing again?". André kept the time-line and the guests received an usual gift.

Warren Hill band members, Dave Hopper (drums), André Berry (bass), Ronnie Gutierrez (percussion), Ron Reinhart (keyboards), and Randy Jacobs (guitar) played on the project. Guest stars include Brian Culbertson, Jeff Golub (guitar), and the Harris Bros. (horns). The album was played first time on the cruise. Unfortunately Brian Culbertson couldn't join because of a time conflict.

After the introduction (personal words of Warren Hill to the guests) the album starts with Toronto. André explained that the pre-release was so new if fact, that some titles hadn't even been chosen for the songs! Why Toronto? Warren grew up in Toronto and made the first steps in playing his instrument. It's a funky tune with much sax on it. Warren used some overdubs for soloing on his own melody-lines.

Play That Funky Music was originally written by Rob Parissi for his band "Wild Cherry". It's exactly that funky stuff André Berry loves. On the backside of his bass one can read "Funk" in big letters. Don't know if Wild Cherry ever played that funk so terrific. Warren performs the leading melody on his sax and its grooving.

On Under Cover Warren showcases some experimental attitude with unusual reverb and tone modulation. André Berry explained that his Apple Powerbook could substitute a whole studio especially in connection with his sampled sounds. He plays these sounds via a midi-keyboard with an one-octave range. On the picture André is explaining how he composed a tune for Warren's album. Andre has a huge knowledge in composing and producing. So when he hits the stage that's only the final act in a long process.

Tim Pierce introduces on acoustic guitar via Interlude to Still In Love. A sentimental grapy tune with a strong romantic mood. This tune will certainly thrill many radio-programmers. 

Flow is the motion characteristic of fluids. Flow is a term for dynamic change. Flow is the longest piece on Warren's album. A fluid dynamic motion of notes with a surprising rhythm (check your left loudspeaker, he is working fine).

The piece Low Rider from the album "Why Can't We Be Friends" (1975) originally played by the group "War" is fascinating many artists. I remember covers of Bona Fide and Jim Capaldi. The original Latin-flavored version is perfectly interpreted. 

On Tuff we have solos of Warren Hill and Brian Simpson. Warren is a specialist of highest tones. This thanks to the early days of Guitars and Saxes, when White and Hill toured together and perfected this musical moment. Warren has been working on that style since his Guitars and Saxes days and showcased it live during PW's set.

Back At One is a slow tempo tune in the way often to hear on Smooth Jazz radio stations. Nevertheless Warren knows to build up a dramatic development.

Come Together, the best-known Beatles tune from their album "Abbey Road"(1969), is nicely revived with a scratching hip-hop rhythm.

Melting funk and jazz, going to the roots a new Warren Hill on Bridgin’ the Gap. Old-school and new styles are burned together to an irresistible sound.






André Berry: Bass, Keyboards and Drum Programming
Brian Culbertson: Hammond B3 on track 3
Ronnie Gutierrez: Percussion
Don & Bill Harris: Trumpet and Sax section on tracks 2, 3, 4, 8 & 11
Warren Hill: Saxophone
Allen Hinds: Additional Guitar on tracks 4, 6, 7 & 10
Dave Hooper: Live Drums
Randy Jacobs: Guitar
Tim Pierce: Acoustic Guitar on track 6
Ron Reinhardt: Keyboards and solos on tracks 10 & 12
Brian Simpson: Keyboards and Piano on tracks 4, 7, 8, 9, 10 & 12