By Eric Alan
For me its always an exciting occasion to be contacted by a South African Jazz, Blues, Latin or World Jazz musician from all of the subcategories of our genre mix and told of their forthcoming brand new album release. Rarely does that happen, usually I’m always keeping an eye out to see and find out who’s doing what and when. The social media has been a great help discovering those new albums and those that are often debutants.
Dan Shout is someone who doesn’t let the grass grow under him and makes contact when things are about to happen. As a musician he is one of those rare species who takes his career very seriously. He is an astute business minded musician who conducts himself in a highly professional manner. He has created an environment, which is conducive to success in the music industry; no make that the jazz music business of today, something of which I admire totally.
Secret Weapons is Dan’s fourth album and second under the moniker In With A Shout which is described on his website as a contemporary, African jazz-fusion project led by saxophonist Dan Shout, I must add that he is also a bandleader, composer, arranger and teacher.
The first track grab hold of me from the opening bars, after things just kinda flowed from there. I was caught up in the musical magic coming form the speakers. The recording itself is quite outstanding, well done to the recording engineers. The album cover is a gem too, it reflects the albums title in a kind of steampunk fashion, whoever the designer was, cudo’s.
As with his earlier albums each relflects his journey as a jazz musician in Africa with each CD (Book) release. The story told though Secret Weapons continues the earlier albums narrative with each track telling the listener of his passage to the here and now. I look forward to grander accomplishments with the subsequent CDs. He found his own unique voice in the cutthroat and fickle world of jazz in Africa a long time ago and continues to grow with each album release. Don’t wait another 4 years to release the next one Dan. This is an album that is a must have for any self respecting jazz afficianado and will stand the test of repeated listening.
- Bennie’s Farm (Soloists: Dan Shout, Justin Bellairs, Michael Bester, Kevin Gibson)
- Jou Lekker Ding (Soloists: Marc de Kock, Michael Bester, Kevin Gibson)
- Challenge Accepted (Soloists: Andrew Ford, Justin Bellairs, Benjamin Jephta)
- Beer Jersey Boogaloo (Soloists: Dan Shout, Michael Bester)
- Betrayal (Soloists: Benjamin Jeptha, Justin Bellairs)
- Lough Easky (Soloists: Gordon Vernick)
- Ready & Waiting (Soloists: Dan Shout)
Dan Shout – Tenor Saxophone, Clarinet (Composer/Arranger)
Marc de Kock – Tenor Saxophone, Flute
Justin Bellairs – Alto Saxophone, Soprano Saxophone
Michael Bester – Electric Guitar
Andrew Ford – Piano
Benjamin Jeptha – Electric Bass
Kevin Gibson – Drum Kit
Gavin Minter – Percussion (Tracks 2, 4, 6)
Gordon Vernick – Trumpet (Track 6)
Ndumiso Manana – Vocals (Track 7)
Recorded, mixed and mastered by Andrew Ford at the Nuthouse Studios, Newlands, Cape Town, April/May 2018.
In With a Shout – SMC003 (2014)
Serenading Ghosts – SHOUT, SMC002 (2012)
Greetings & Salutations – Dan Shout, SMC001 (2010)