'Do you wish to rise? Begin by descending. you plan a tower that will pierce the clouds? Lay first the foundation of humility.' - Saint Augustine
Yes, Shaun Martin has a natural gift that has been evident since he began playing drums in church at the age of 4. Yes, his mother had the vision to arrange piano instruction from Carolyn Campbell and guide him on his path. Yes, he has several Grammys from his work with Kirk Franklin and the gospel powerhouse God’s Property and yes, he has several more Grammys that crown his years with jazz fusion phenomenon Snarky Puppy. But you will not find this information in discussion with this gently powerful man because he wears none of this on his sleeve.
Shaun Martin has been playing, creating, and collaborating for most of his life, yet his contributions go much further than just playing. When you move through the projects that Shaun has been a part of you can feel his style and influence; you can sense his presence throughout the compositions. Shaun’s willingness and ability to be a subtle part of each band has allowed him to be part of the very foundation.
After the acclaimed release of Shaun Martin’s debut - Seven Summers - Martin returns to the studio for a simpler project - A Jazz Trio recording entitled Focus, with frequent collaborators AJ Brown and Jamil Byron, with special guests Keith Taylor and Robert ’Sput’ Searight.
'I wanted to sit down and fall back in love with the piano - to dance with the one that brought you.' - Shaun Martin
The trio format lends plenty of inspiration for Shaun, he counts Bill Evans, Oscar Peterson, Keith Jarrett, and Gary Peacock as influences and standards for the trio vibe, with the magnetic interplay between the instruments as the foundation. Yet as always, Shaun Martin makes the trio his own, comfortably expressing himself as though he is in fact dancing with the one that brought him. A couple of standards from Joe Henderson and Billie Holiday set the frame, with five original compositions that bring the story into Focus, and the interplay between these lifelong friends is indeed magnetic and seemingly effortless.
Focus is set for worldwide release on July 20, 2018.
Release Date: July 20, 2018
All songs written by Shaun Martin except
Recorda-me - written by Joe Henderson
Body and Soul - written by Frank Eyton, Robert Sour, John Green, Edward Heyman
All songs are performed by:
Shaun Martin - Piano
Jamil Byrom - Drums
AJ Brown - Double Bass
Keith Taylor - Bass
Robert “Sput” Searight - Drums
Recorded at FoYoSoul Studios in Uncle Jessie’s Kitchen
Recorded by: Michael Havens
Mixed and Mastered by: Michael Havens