John Stowell

Solitary Tales

Origin 82525


iTunes - $9.99

...Stowell transcends the label of jazz guitarist.
L.A. Times

John Stowell follows up on his last Origin release Resonance with another solo outing, this time recorded live in the studio of master guitar luthier Mike Doolin in front of a highly attentive & discerning audience. Besides his own originals, Stowell presents new takes on Bill Evans' "Funny Man," "Blues Connotation" by Ornette Coleman, and Cole Porter's classic "Everything I Love." Most noted for his seminal duo work with bassist David Friesen in the '70s, Stowell's daringly original sound and concept have earned him the respect of the finest musicians in the world. Solitary Tales displays all of this while adding another gem to the solo guitar canon.

Read the interview with Just Jazz Guitar Magazine HERE.

Track Listing:

1. Everything I Love 5:25
2. Friendly Giant 4:50
3. Outfits 4:19
4. Funny Man 5:44
5. House of Doolin 5:03
6. Willow 5:08
7. Fun With Fruit 4:06
8. Behind the Scenes 4:07
9. Laughing River 3:28
10. Blues Connotation 4:18
11. Wybleing 4:40


JOHN STOWELL - solo guitar

Production Info:

Recorded live at a house concert, July 23, 2008
at Mike Doolin?s, Portland, OR
Engineered by Mike Doolin
Mixed & mastered by Mark Frethem
Stowell photographs by Hiroshi Iwaya
Cover design by John Bishop

Reviews of Solitary Tales

All Music Guide (Adam Greenberg)
Recorded during a solo concert in the sound engineer's (and guitar maker's) home, Solitary Tales lets guitarist John Stowell slowly explore a range of musical ideas. The pace never gets to be too much, with Stowell rarely stepping up the tempo up beyond the leisurely. The star is always Stowell's intricate touch, pulling nuances of sound from the g ...

Jazzscene, April 2009 (George Fendel)
Anyone who has witnessed a performance by master guitarist John Stowell, knows that he is far from your everyday guitarist. From the nearly vertical position of the guitar (not unlike the position of a cello) to the artist's expression and his closed eyes, Stowell is nearly one with the guitar. On this solo expedition, he plays both acoustic and el ...

Just Jazz Guitar Magazine (Matthew Warnock)
John Stowell has spent the last thirty years developing a reputation as one of the finest guitarists and educators in the country. John has a unique playing style, holding the guitar almost upright like a cellist. His incredible harmonic vocabulary has given him a personalized sound that has become instantly recognizable to fans of jazz guitar. Alo ...

All About Jazz (John Barron)
An entire disc of solo, improvised guitar music could easily run the risk of sounding like one continuous tune. Fortunately, Portand, Oregon-based guitarist John Stowell applies enough depth and open-minded searching to his nylon-string guitar to keep things interesting throughout Solitary Tales. The eleven-track disc was recorded live at the home ...

Rifftides (Doug Ramsey)
The CD's title suits the guitarist, a peripatetic performer who roams the world. I recently heard a musician say, "You never know where he'll show up." Although Stowell often plays with others, some of his most stunning work, as here, is unaccompanied. He alternates acoustic and electric guitars, but when he is plugged in he keeps his amplifier vol ...

Earshot Jazz (Chris Robinson)
John Stowell's album Solitary Tales is all about exploration. On most of the album Stowell plays a nylon string acoustic/electric guitar that has a classical sound. In fact when Stowell isn't playing swung or bebop lines, he almost sounds as if he's improvising in a classical guitar fashion. In this way, Stowell makes full use of the idiomatic p ...

The Davis Enterprise (Ric Bang)
Guitarist John Stowell lives and works in and around Portland, Ore. He may not be well known to the general public, but he's a "musician's musician" to name guitarists and those who know the music world well. Stowell also is a famous clinician who conducts classes throughout the United States and Canada. This solo guitar album is his newest releas ...

Audiophile Audition (Brian Whistler)
That Stowell has never stopped growing is amply apparent on this latest release. John Stowell is an Oregon-based jazz guitarist who has been on the scene since the mid 1970s. I first encountered his music while he was touring the west coast back in the 70s in a duo with bassist Dave Friesen. Freisen's visceral, earthy approach to the bass was th ...

JazzTimes (Mike Joyce)
Guitarist John Stowell went straight to the source when choosing a setting for his latest solo release - the home of Portland, Ore.-based luthier Mike Doolin. Using a pair of Doolin guitars - a nylon acoustic-electric and an electric tuned a major-third lower - Stowell recorded "Solitary Tales" live in front of a small, appreciative audience. C ...

Cadence (Peter Westbrook)
Solo guitarist Stowell, heard on Solitary Tales, has a sound harking back to Classical guitar playing with none of the rhythmic stiffness sometimes associated with it. The opening track, "Everything I Love," moves from chiming rubato passages to an improvisation that alternated between thoughtful, climbing episodes and swinging single-note lines. ...





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