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“This record had a very big impact on me. It’s Art Farmer in 1978, and the guitar player is Jim Hall, another great jazz legend. The album is the follow-up to Crawl Space – a different band, but the drummer, once again, is Steve Gadd. It’s Steve Gadd playing swing, which I hadn’t heard him do before.
“It’s a beautiful record. There’s only four tracks on it, on vinyl, of course – two tracks per side. What’s great about it is the amazing, sensitive and musical drumming. Drums are a pretty hard instrument with which to evoke any other emotion than massive excitement. You can create atmospheres on the piano or with a trumpet – drums are different. But Steve Gadd, in my view, played in a very melancholic way. His performances on this record really changed the way I viewed the drums.
“Ripping around the drums at a hundred miles per hour is something that anybody can achieve if they’re willing to practice. Very few people can achieve melancholic musicality on a drum kit – that’s a really hard thing to do.
“In addition, Steve Gadd opened me up to minimalism, which is something my dad was really into. He wasn’t a loud, high, screeching trumpet player. He really liked Miles Davis, Clifford Brown, Chet Baker – and I’m a massive Chet Baker fan.
“The art of minimalism is one that comes down to design. You can easily compare architecture, how beautiful some things are and how ugly other things happen to be. Minimalistic buildings can be great, and other times they’re horrible. At the end of the day, it’s a question of taste. That’s something Chet Baker had, as much as anyone I’ve ever heard. Steve Gadd felt like he could do the drum equivalent of that.”