Spyro Gyra | Down The Wire

Spyro Gyra – Down The Wire

Listen to song samples from “Down The Wire” on our Jazz page by clicking here!

“Down The Wire” is the seventh Heads Up International release by Spyro Gyra and the group is led by members Jay Beckenstein, saxes; Tom Schuman, keyboards; Scott Ambush, bass; Julio Fernandez, guitars; and Bonny “Bonny B” Bonaparte, drums, percussion and vocals.   Borrowing from early influences, Weather Report, Chick Corea and Return To Forever, “Down To The Wire” encompasses several genres: funk, fusion, straight jazz, blues, Latin, Brazilian and instrumental pop.


The set of eleven songs, all composed by band members, is led off by Ambush’s funk bass line that opens the title song (written by Ambush). Ambush and Beckenstein lead the way with the remaining members hovering in the background.  Each member has his moments in this funky number and is an excellent set opener.


Schuman’s “Not For Nothin’” is the song that will register strongly with long time Spyro Gyra fans as most similar to their sound, with its infectious beat.  Guitarist Fernandez is back with the band after playing with them in the 80’s and contributes the seven-minute ballad “A Flower For Annie Jeanette”, with a nice solo from pianist Schuman in the middle.


“La Zona Rosa” has five guest sideman joining with the band for a big-sounding Afro-Cuban flavored number including three-piece horn section. “Ice Mountain” is a riveting piece of music written by Bonny B that moves from one style to another and shows their Weather Report influence.


Spyro Gyra is considered one of the most listenable of smooth jazz bands out there and they have the ability to appeal to those who would not normally consider this type of music.


Ian Cooke

The Urban Music Scene

Visit the official Spyro Gyra website by clicking here!

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