“… one of the best jazz vibraphonists on the planet.” -Scott Mercado, Modern Drummer Magazine
Internationally acclaimed in jazz, classical and pop circles, vibraphonist/marimbist/Professor Emeritus, Tom Collier remains on his incredible musical journey of over six decades with “The Color of Wood”, a powerful, musically-mesmerizing solo performance.
“The Color Of Wood” is a jazz-based marimba album performed entirely on rosewood bars by Collier. The recording features new original compositions written specifically for the marimba, several older previously ensemble-recorded originals, and a few unique arrangements of pop/jazz standards thrown in for fun.
While marimba albums are quite common in the classical world, only a scant few jazz marimba albums have been released over the years making “The Color Of Wood” a very unique recording in the jazz canon. While many of the tracks on “The Color Of Wood” were made in one single pass, several other compositions incorporated two, three, or four overdub passes to enrich the sound and artistic intent of the music. In any case, the music was performed entirely on marimba by a single performer (except for the use of a tambourine also played by Collier on one track).
“…his sleight-of-hand solos…are a fascinating study.” -Leonard Feather, Los Angeles Times
“…a graceful, ruminative sway. He maintains the song structure, but with freewheeling agility.” – Scott Yanow, Jazz Historian and Journalist
“… a great vibes player….” -Emil Richards autobiography, “Wonderful World Of Percussion”
“… one of the best jazz vibraphonists on the planet.”</b> -Scott Mercado, Modern Drummer Magazine
“… a new musical standard for the vibraphone.” -F. Michael Combs, Percussive Notes/Percussive Arts Society
“…makes vibes and marimbas the expressive and emotional equal of piano keyboards.” -Robert Carlberg, Keyboard Magazine-
A real solo set in the Todd Rundgren sense of the word in how he does it all here, this set shows why this grand old man is recognized as the grand old man of vibes, marimba etc. A engaging recital by a cat so into his work that he doesn’t need to work and play well with others, you never knew banging on things could sound so sweet. A real treat.
-Chris Spector for Midwest Record
It’s hard to carry off a solo album under any condition, but even more so when the only instrument is the vibraphone. Yet, Tom Collier pulls it off with cleverness and accessibility combining his own originals with clever covers of various standards.
Of the latter, he delivers a lovely and tropical read of Freddie Hubbard’s “Little Sunflower” with aplomb, while Hank Williams’ “I’m So Lonely, I Could Cry” has the vibes with a tear in the beer. There’s a deep resonance to Roy Orbison’s “Crying” that makes it a glorious aria. Of his own material, he does some wonders with the vibes that make the title tune sound almost flutelike, while “Hopscotch” is a festive Caribbean street pieces. A “Five Reflections On Wood” features moments of meditation, thick layers of haunting reflections and reverent meditations”, while Collier throws in an Irish jig on ”Dance of the Avaricious Dolt”. Fascinating rhythms.