Andy Rothstein | Wit of the Staircase

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John Scofield Mike Stern The Brecker Brothers

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United States - New Jersey

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Jazz: Jazz Fusion Jazz: Jazz-Funk Moods: Featuring Guitar
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Wit of the Staircase

by Andy Rothstein

Funky/bluesy/jazz guitarist extraordinaire along with a lineup of heavy weight players is sure to please those who like jazz with some attitude.
Genre: Jazz: Jazz Fusion
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Return to Reason
4:57 $0.99
2. Compass
5:03 $0.99
3. No Worries
4:36 $0.99
4. Wit of the Staircase
4:08 $0.99
5. Recordame
6:33 $0.99
6. Giant Steps
6:26 $0.99
7. Word for Word
4:52 $0.99
8. Just Friends
4:30 $0.99
9. Minor League
5:06 $0.99
10. Knuckle Down
2:54 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
“It was a pleasure and an honor to be involved with Andy's project. He is a first rate soloist and has put together a recording that shows versatility and creativity in his improvisations and in his production concept and compositions”
Lew Soloff (Trumpeter)
"Andy’s playing is so inspired and musical and joining this group of musician was truly an honor for me."
Van Romaine (Drummer)
“…The result is a guided guitar tour of several decades of music, with nods to the artist’s many influences, including Pat Martino and Stevie Ray Vaughn, as well as Kevin Eubanks and Ted Dunbar, both of whom Rothstein studied with. He learned well, playing here with taste, a clean pure tone and musical skills that impress without begging for attention.”
Tony Mottola, Editor, Jersey Jazz, The Journal of the NJ Jazz Society
"This is an excellent listen worth many more spins after the first. You would be well advised to check this out several times before you decide that nothing was missed along the way."
Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck ©
Rothstein offers an excellent follow up CD that speaks volumes about the state of jazz/rock guitar instrumental music
Robert Silverstein – Music Web Express 3000
Blend the styles of Mike Stern, Pat Martino and Stevie Ray Vaughn, plus throw in a little Andy Summers and U2's "The Edge" for good measure you just might end up with a rather unique contemporary jazz guitarist!! Andy Rothstein has played guitar since the age of 13, and studied with such jazz greats as Steve Khan, Kevin Eubanks and Ted Dunbar. His 2009 release fuses straight ahead bebop with funk and rock stylings, and features a dynamic lineup including Manolo Badrena (percussion), Tom Hammer (keyboards), Steve Jankowski (trumpet), Erik Lawrence (saxophone), Pete Levin (organ/piano), Tony Senatore (bass), Andy Snitzer (saxophone), Lew Soloff (trumpet), Luther Rix (drums), Van Romaine (drums) and Tom Timko (saxophone).



to write a review

Brian Kelly

The first thing that stands out about this CD is that it clearly is not just another independently released, self-produced, artist owned recording. The quality is major label class with great songs and all the musicians on this record are world class. The sidemen actually play like it's their recording.

The second thing is that there is a very unusual balance of traditional jazz concepts and performances alongside much more modern playing. This recording is composed of two different sessions. One is purely modern jazz-funk-fusion while the other is a modern recasting of several often played jazz compositions and standards. You might think that the material alone promotes the concept that he is playing stylistically from two different eras but instead I think Rothstein is playing like that all that time and no matter what the material is his playing reflects the entire history of jazz guitar soloing right up to the present time. I think that's quite an accomplishment.

One of the jazz standards he does on this recording is John Coltrane's "Giant Steps". Ordinarily I think this song is quickly becoming over-played but in this case Andy has really put a nice, new coat of paint on this tune and as it is I think this may be my current favorite recording of this tune. I honestly very much like everything on this recording but my favorite might be Minor League. This is about as modern and hip as you can get but traditional jazz purists are going to recognize it for it is -- PURE JAZZ.

Compass, Words For Word and Wit of the Staircase are all winners as well.

Worth noting also is that the cover on this CD is equally beautiful.

If you like anything from Pat Martino to Mike Stern I can't imagine that you won't love this recording because it is an exceptional recording and for that reason I am going to rate 5 Stars.

Bob Cook

Wit of Staircase
This is an excellent recording. Not a throw-away tune on the CD. Every song is interesting, and the music is eclectic. Some outstanding musicianship is on dislpay here. Love the fusion tunes, and the standards are cool too. My favorites are the opeming and closing fusion-oriented tunes- some very high energy playing. I also loved the take on Giant Steps- almost like an island/world beat type thing going on there. Just Friends was fun too! I've heard many big band versions of this tune, but it was really neat to hear it in combo-setting with an organ.Looking forward to future releases!

Vin Bonamo

Andy Rothstein delivers on Wit of the Staircase
Andy Rothstein is a master of many styles and has the songwriting skills to show them off, as he proves song after song on Wit of the Staircase. This CD is well-produced and is graced by many sterling performances, most notably the horn work of Lew Soloff of Blood, Sweat & Tears fame. While the “Blue Note” vibe tunes are well done (including a cool take on the jazz classic “Giant Steps”), it was Andy’s original compositions that were the highlight for me:

• Return to Reason – the impressive opener has the band firing on all cylinders as Andy’s superfast guitar theme is doubled, first by the bass then by trumpet. Andy then lets loose with a fluid and distinctive solo that is a joy to listen to.

• Compass – I had to listen to Compass several times to begin to appreciate the beauty of this understated gem. Andy’s solo is an impressive feat of saying more with less.

• Wit of the Staircase – the title track is likely the catchiest tune on the album, with a memorable guitar figure that makes this a stand-out track on any contemporary jazz playlist.

• Word for Word – opens with a beautiful 70s soul vibe that takes on a harder-edged snarl as Andy builds his solo.

• Knuckle Down – Closing the album on a high note is this funky guitar/horn workout.