Being a guitarist myself I have a personal monument to the Jazz/Fusion genre even though my background is the likes of Eddie Van Halen and Steve Vai. But I have seen in countless interviews with those two and many more in the shredder universe point to the likes of Stanley Jordan, Pat Methany and more for their inspiration and they are 100% correct when they say that it’s the Jazz and Improv artists that are the true Pioneers. Meet Neil C. Young. He fits perfectly in the inspiration category and earns every bit of his place their. See for yourself in his new video for his lead single “Bolo”.
About Neil C. Young:
A hugely talented writer and guitarist based in West Yorkshire, Neil C. Young – not to be confused with his well-known singer-songwriter namesake – is a specialist in instrumental jazz in the vein of George Benson, Wes Montgomery, Pat Metheny and John Scofield.
Revered by those who know the genre, Young has played all over the world, from the UK to Mexico, even Cuba, and is now ready to unveil a change of direction with new album ‘Encemble’. Having made his name as part of the Neil C. Young Trio, this album has seen Young widen his scope. Stringing together a collective of eight talented jazz musicians over the course of the album, the result is a compelling, complex but accessible brand of jazz music.
In a change from his normal writing technique, Neil C. Young built this album around melodies to create the harmony, in turn creating layers for the unconventional line-up of a baritone saxophone, bass clarinet, bass guitar, trumpets, and two drum kits. The results are outstanding – a shining example of the much maligned jazz genre on crowd pleasing form.
With any justice, this album will be a release which allows Young to take his unique style to a wider audience than the existing jazz fan base. He’s already had some help on the quest, with mainstream aficionado Jamie Cullum including him as a recommended gig of the week on several occasions. He’s also worked with big names from jazz guitarists Gary Boyle and Pat McCarthy to, more surprisingly, progressive rock band The Earlies and Mercury Prize nominated singer-songwriter King Creosote.
It’s easy to see from his social feeds that Neil C. Young is unaffected by the growing hype surrounding his music. Witty and down to earth, he often pokes fun at himself and clearly enjoys simply making music. He is also fully aware of the raised eyebrows caused by his name – shared with one of the best loved songwriters in the world over the last five decades. The similarity has led to crossed wires on many occasions; in one case of mistaken identity, a festival promoter looking to book Neil C. Young received an e-mail from the agent of the other Neil Young, who claimed the jazz musician was an imposter.