Tim Sparks: Chasin the Boogie

Tim Sparks: Chasin the Boogie
Title: Chasin the Boogie
Label: CD Baby

While Leo Kottke is Minnesota's most celebrated acoustic guitarist, Sparks is the most adventurous picker in the Land of 10,000 Licks. Known for ethnic music, Sparks here interprets pop hits ("Both Sides Now," "Blue Bayou") and traditional tunes ("Wayfaring Stranger," "I'll Fly Away") with warmth, passion and a remarkable sense of harmony and rhythm. His originals showcase both his virtuosity and creativity. Jon Bream, Mpls Star Tribune Tim Sparks - Chasin' the Boogie Ever since first becoming aware of Tim's music shortly after he released Guitar Bazaar in 1995, I've eagerly anticipated what he'd come up with next. I spent most of the two decades that followed the event on the editorial team of Acoustic Guitar magazine, and on the days when a new Tim Sparks release would land on my desk, I'd do little else besides spin the disc and marvel at it's contents. Beyond the pleasure of listening to his recordings, I've had the privilege of spending time with Tim at shared gigs, guitar festivals, or over cups of strong coffee (quadruple espressos appear to be the norm), and each time, I came away amazed at Tim's ability to reign in the most impossible sounding, far-fetched artistic goals. Hearing Tim's work on a CD is one thing, but sitting next to him on stage, listening and watching him move effortlessly from playing Tchaikovsky to Coltrane, Balkan folk tunes to traditional Jewish music, and on to some of the most imaginative originals to ever be penned for the guitar, is truly an eye- and ear-opening experience. It's hard to imagine any guitarist not needing to pick their jaw off the floor after hearing Tim play, yet Tim's level of scholarship and understanding of the music at hand is perhaps even more impressive. In a testament to his professionalism and kindness, Tim is also the kind of musician who will lift others playing with him to sound their very best, putting the results of the combined effort ahead of the opportunity to showcase his own virtuosity. In some ways, Chasin' the Boogie, has less of an obvious theme than most of Tim's previous albums. I had heard him play some of the blues-based material from the album in concerts, and he included a version of "Mississippi Blues" on his 2009 release Sidewalk Blues, but I was surprised to see tunes such as the Beatles' "Blackbird," Joni Mitchell's "Both Sides Now," Jerry Jeff Walker's "Mr. Bojangles," or the folk tunes "I'll Fly Away" and "Wayfaring Stranger" included on the album. As someone who loves Tim's knack for introducing me to music I was unfamiliar with, I spent a brief moment worrying that these popular tunes wouldn't allow Tim's singular style to emerge. But of course I was put at ease just a few bars into "Blackbird," which, while instantly recognizable, leads the listener straight into Tim's own private universe, where it is fused with his signature licks, advanced sense of harmony, and polyphonic movement. Chasin' the Boogie is guitar music at it's best. Even on songs that you thought you knew, you'll find yourself hitting the "repeat" button to make sure that what you just heard really happened. Tim manages to package his virtuoso playing and engaging arrangement so masterfully that the beauty and musicality is never overshadowed by technique that's employed merely to showcase chops. Whether you're already a fan of solo guitar music or not, give Chasin' the Boogie a spin and allow yourself to be taken along! Teja Gerken Co-Founder and producer, Peghead Nation Guitar journalist.

1.1 Carolina Blue Guitar
1.2 Chasin' the Boogie
1.3 I'll Fly Away
1.4 Blackbird
1.5 Reckless Persuasion
1.6 Mr. Bojangles
1.7 What a Friend We Have in Jesus
1.8 Mississippi Blues
1.9 Blue la la
1.10 Both Sides Now
1.11 Wayfaring Stranger
1.12 Blue Bayou

Tim Sparks: Chasin the Boogie

Regular price Sale price $14.70 $15.98
Tax included.

Recently viewed