Review: Chad Wackerman Trio Hits Live DVD
(mtebaldi | Posted 2010-09-21)
Besides being a phenomenal jazz and rock drummer, having toured and recorded 26 albums with Frank Zappa, Chad Wackerman is also a man of charisma. Through his serene expressions, perfectly chosen words, and soft voice, he hosts and narrates details of every single song you will see and hear on his first DVD as Chad Wackerman Trio (recent released by the DrumChannel.com).
With pals Mike Miller (guitar) and Doug Lunn (bass) on board, the trio plays a variety of jazz-fusion songs composed by Wackerman himself. Written primarily for a quartet set up, Mike Miller takes on the duty of wisely accommodating vibes and guitar parts with a single instrument. After an introductory chitchat with the band, Chad carefully gives viewers the story behind every song they are about to experience through the performance.
"Sophie’s Beach" is the first tune of the DVD and is a song written for Chad’s daugther, inspired by their trips to the beach in Sydney. The song features a delightful and turbulent, as Chad describes, drum solo at the end. The movie continues with a Miles Davis inspired tune called "Spiral" and then with an old, dramatic and bold song, part of Chad’s first album, titled "Tell Me." "All Sevens" is the song that follows, bringing interesting drum signatures. Inspired by the poem “Welcome to Holland”, the ballad Holland is one of the most beautiful songs on this DVD and personally one of my favorites. Chad taps on dealing with changing expectations as the inspirational motive behind this one. Moving to rock-ish tunes, the trio plays the progressive "Balancing Acts" and the NYC inspired "The City," portraying Big Apple’s bombardment of humanity. The movie ends with another old song called Scream. The DVD features two more tunes under the bonus materials and a drum channel promo video that you might want to skip it.
The beauty of this DVD is found not only on the skillfully crafted songs but also in the showing of an artist’s way finding true inspiration for the creation of his masterpiece. Chad’s remarks on how the relationship of band behind the scenes reflects profoundly on its musicality serves as great advice to all musicians. Personally speaking, the only thing missing on The Chad Wackerman Trio: Hits Live DVD is a crowd to intensify the overall performances. Either way this movie will make want to just dim the lights, pour some scotch, light a cigar, relax and enjoy.