- Walter Smith III
Return To Casual CD
Release date: 19 May, 2023
"Saxophonist and composer Walter Smith III enters a new era of his band leading career with his remarkable Blue Note debut return to casual, the long-anticipated follow-up to his self-released 2014 recording still casual. Eight original works (and one new arrangement) all composed within weeks of each other layer, displace, dismantle and reassemble among the Houston native’s fellow artists. Reprising their bandmate roles, pianist Taylor Eigsti, guitarist Matt Stevens, bassist Harish Raghavan, and trumpeter Ambrose Akinmusire reveal a seasoned depth of dimension alongside a featured guest appearance by pianist James Francies.
Dedicated to collaborative work with some of the music’s most influential voices — including Akinmusire, Terence Blanchard, Gerald Clayton, Eric Harland, Jason Moran, Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah, Herbie Hancock, Maria Schneider, Terri Lyne Carrington, and Dee Dee Bridgewater — Smith has crafted a distinct style, personal vocabulary and compositional approach that serves the individuality of his fellow artists. For the past several years, he has been co-leading the acclaimed In Common project with Stevens, exploring and refining different conceptual approaches to writing. In releasing return to casual, on which he also serves as producer, Smith unveils the many ways his creative expression has expanded, and the influence these collaborative environments have had on his vision as a leader."
- CD Album