New Release: Bill McBirnie Trio "Find Your Place" (Extreme Flute)

The Bill McBirnie Trio - Find Your Place" Featuring Bill McBirnie-flute, Bernie Senensky-Hammond B3 organ, Anthony Michelli-drums (Extreme Flute EF06). Street Date May 6, 2014. Bill McBirnie is a Canadian jazz and Latin flute specialist whose extraordinary level of skill prompted a personal solicitation from classical flute legend, Sir James Galway, to serve as the resident Jazz Flute Specialist at Sir James’ official web site. Although Bill is known for his outstanding technique, he is also recognized as an exceptional improviser in the bebop, swing and Latin idioms as demonstrated by numerous recordings as a sideman with the likes
of Junior Mance, Irakere, Memo Acevedo, Four80East and Emilie-Claire Barlow. He is also a longstanding charter member of the Moe Koffman Tribute Band.

Here are just a few illustrative comments regarding Bill’s work:

- "Dear Maestro McBirnie, This just blew me away. Great, great playing...I have never heard anyone play like this...Great technique and music making. The scales are so even it sounds like you wrote the Taffanel scale book...Bill, when you read this, I have to take my hat off to you. This is great playing by any standard."
SIR JAMES GALWAY (Galway-Flute-Chat)

- “In both duo and quartet formats, McBirnie dazzles...In every instance, his technique is flawless, dynamic and often simply jaw-dropping...McBirnie has been called Canada’s standout jazz flautist. I maintain he is one of the top two or three in the world."
MARK E. GALLO (Jazz Review)

- "A distinguished flutist with a devotion that shows up in the airy sweetness of his sound at ballad tempos and in the remarkable control he can bring to rapid-fire, skittering runs on up tempo, Coltrane-inspired material."
STUART BROOMER (Editor, Coda magazine)

- "McBirnie has always handled bop exceptionally well. You can hear his years at the conservatory in his sound, a pure, transparent tone at rest, brightening with exertion, yet he swings like someone who grew up with a large collection of Blue Note and Prestige LPs down in the basement. He's entirely idiomatic, but also effortlessly inventive."
MARK MILLER (The Globe and Mail)

- "...All beautifully recorded, unclassifiable, and virtually timeless..."
MICHAEL STEINMAN (Cadence Magazine)

The Bill McBirnie Trio

featuring Bernie Senensky & Anthony Michelli

Find Your Place

Consummate Canadian jazz and Latin flutist, Bill McBirnie, has released a new album (his sixth) which departs, in a significant way, from all three of his previously acclaimed acoustic jazz projects (Mercy with Robi Botos; Paco Paco with Bernie Senensky; and Nature Boy with Mark Eisenman). On Find Your Place, Bill has placed the flute in a very unlikely setting—as part of an organ trio!

For this singular format, Bill has recruited two outstanding fellow Canadian musicians—Bernie Senensky on Hammond B3 organ and Anthony Michelli on drums. As Bill scintillates on the flute, Bernie delivers a distinctly Larry Young kind of “edge" on the organ while Anthony provides nonstop "snap, crackle and pop" on the drums. Find Your Place showcases a broad scope of material ranging from modal (“Yes Or No”), to Latin (“Soy Califa”), to gospel (“Yes Indeed!”, for Sir James Galway) right on through to a Beatles' classic (“Oh! Darling”). Concluding this more standard fare on the album is the title track, “Find Your Place”, an original written by Bill and dedicated to his wife, Svetlana.

In keeping with Bill's most recent acoustic jazz projects, Find Your Place combines a clear acoustic sonority with the raw authenticity of a blowing session, resulting in an album with “drop-the-needle-anywhere” presence and charm.

The origins of this unusual organ trio project came about at the recording session for one of Bill's previous albums, Paco Paco, which also featured Bernie Senensky, but who played piano on that prior occasion. As fate would have it, upon arrival at the studio for the Paco Paco recording, Bernie detected a Hammond B3 organ in the corner and, given his known enthusiasm for—as well as prowess on—that instrument, Bernie was excited at the prospect of perhaps playing organ on the Paco Paco session. However, the piano was set up, miked and ready to go—whereas the organ was not. So, after pleading with Bernie (and, as Bill put it, ”virtually having to pry both his arms and his fingers from around the Leslie cabinet”), Bill was finally able to placate him by promising to let Bernie play the organ...on another occasion!...With the release of Find Your Place, that occasion has arrived!

This unique organ trio format is also distinguished by the presence of drummer, Anthony Michelli, for whom Bill has been a longstanding advocate because of his remarkable skill, versatility and musicianship. So now, with all three members of this singular trio combined, they present their fresh – and entirely musical – takes on:

(1) So In Love (Cole Porter) – Latin
(2) Yes Indeed! (Sy Oliver) – for Sir James Galway – gospel
(3) Oh! Darling (Lennon/McCartney) – shuffle
(4) Minority (Gigi Gryce) – bebop
(5) Estate (Martino/Brighetti) – bossa nova
(6) Jeannine (Duke Pearson) – swing
(7) Gee Baby, Ain't I Good To You (Redman/Razaf) – ballad
(8) Yes Or No (Wayne Shorter) – modal
(9) Soy Califa (Dexter Gordon) – Latin/swing
(10) Sister Sadie (Horace Silver) – swing
(11) Rhythm-A-Ning (Thelonious Monk) – swing
(12) Find Your Place (Bill McBirnie) – for Svetlana - bossa nova

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