Travis Shook

Travis Shook

Travis Shook

Travis Shook

Travis Shook, piano; Bunky Green*, alto sax;
Ira Coleman, bass; Tony Williams, drums.

1. Broadway (Woode) 8:14
2. Astarte* (L. Harper) 4:47
3. Witchcraft (Coleman) 6:32
4. Dewey North (T. Shook) 4:36
5. Little Girl I'll Miss You* (B. Green) 6:45
6. Touch and Go (J. Thomas) 5:49
7. Love For Sale (Porter) 9:59
8. My Foolish Heart (Washington) 4:21
Produced by WILLIAMS / SHOOK
Cover Photo by DANA TYNAN
Cover Design by NICKY LINDEMAN
Recording by JAMES P. NICHOLS
Recorded on January 1, 1993

Becoming a finalist in the Jacksonville Jazz Festival's Great American Jazz Piano Contest was a fortuitous event for Travis Shook, for it was there at the competition that he was discovered by one of its judges, Dr. George Butler, who immediately made plans to bring Travis to the Columbia Records label. In recalling the evening, Dr. Butler said, "It was a magical moment for all of us. In this tense competition setting along came Travis Shook, who cooly took the stage and came out swinging with his first note. We all put down our pencils, sat back and enjoyed the display of this fascinating, yet somehow enigmatic performer. he mesmerized a willing audience with his remarkable touch and impeccable use of space."

Travis Shook is the result of these preceding events. And the results can be measured by the company he keeps. Tony Williams doesn't just play with anybody.

His arrangement of the classics "Broadway" and "Love For Sale" spring from the development of one small riff and propel the songs into new territory. "Touch and Go" shows a more reflective side without surrendering to the lure of sentimentality. With the addition of alto saxophonist Bunky Green, who Travis met on his Florida venture, the listener almost has the feeling of being bodily carried within the tune "Astare." The Green composition, "Little Girl I'll Miss You," is a wonderfully melodic journey which also demonstrates Travis' knack for finding material.

Travis' original composition, "Dewey North," personifies his strength in the trio setting and gives us a taste of what we can expect in his future writings. The standard "Witchcraft" found its own magic in the studio. As Travis and bass player Ira Coleman were reviewing the chords one final time before the take, associate producer, Onaje Allan Gumbs, in hearing them, suggested that the two of them record the piece just that way, to which Travis immediately agreed. The conversation between the instruments is ensemble at its purest.

Travis chose to close his program for the Jacksonville audience with "My Foolish Heart" and it is fitting that he replicates this here.

--AL PRYOR, from the liner notes.

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Travis Shook with Veronica Nunn


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