Ian Wardenski receives a 9.3 Rating from Staccatofy

Ian Wardenski, Collective Thoughts Review

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Guitarist Ian Wardenski is a well-schooled musician, at the age of fifteen he studied with John Lahovski, Peter Sittler, and Frank DiBussolo. During this time Ian attended the Creative Music Institute in Emmaus, Pa., where he studied music theory, composition, and improvisation. Wardenski graduated from Notre Dame de Namur University in Belmont, CA., with a Bachelor of Arts in Music. While there he studied music theory/musicianship under Denis Moreen and Michael Schmitz, and classical guitar under Richard Patterson and David Dueñas. In the fall of 2004, Wardenski received a Master of Music in Music Theory from Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, Pa.  Additionally, Wardenski completed his Ph.D. in Music Theory at The Catholic University of America in Washington, DC, where he studied music theory/musicianship. His grasp of classical and jazz idioms have given him the dexterity and prowess that is displayed on his debut album, Collective Thoughts, featuring:  Tim Powell: soprano and tenor sax; Jerry Ascione: piano; Amy Shook: bass; Frank Russo: drums and guest vocalist Tamara Tucker, who utilizes her voice in an instrumental fashion, on tracks 1, 6, 8, and 9.

Positives
Collective Thoughts is a riveting listen; the union of classical chamber jazz and modern jazz is a pleasing esthetic that offers depth and freedom in the improvisation, while still offering a cohesive and highly musical listen.
Bottom Line
It is easy to hear the years of tutelage put into Wardenski’s journey as a guitarist and composer. His maturity in writing offers a strength and tenderness all rolled into one. His use of colors shimmers with brilliance and each of the ensemble players are equally adroit, adding personality to each cut that adds up to a highly stimulating experience. There is a freedom in Wardenski’s compositions that lend themselves to a hybrid of chamber jazz, but with more movement and melody that adds to the musicality of each piece. A highly recommended listen. That’s the short of it!

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