More than anything, Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews wanted to have enough time to work on his new album, “Say That to Say This,” which premieres today on Speakeasy. So he made time.
“On the previous two records, we were touring, and we’d go in for a day or two, go back on tour for two weeks, then go back in for a week,” Andrews told Speakeasy. “This time, we were able to do three, four weeks straight and just comfortable, get in creative mode instead of being in creative mode and performing mode.”
It shows on the album, a 10-song collection of tunes shot through with the sounds and spirit of Andrews’ native New Orleans: there are elements of funk, jazz, R&B and rock ‘n’ roll. He and the band recorded this time with the R&B singer and producer Raphael Saadiq, who Shorty said pushed the musicians in new directions.
“He’s a great producer, he’s a great musician, and he actually joined in with us most of the time on the guitar or the bass,” Andrews said. “We were able to get a different type of songwriting atmosphere from him.”
Each album Andrews has released has reached an ever-widening audience, and the singer, songwriter, trombonist and trumpet player is conscious that he and the band play mesh together better than ever.
“We’ve gotten stronger musically,” he said. “You can hear that we’ve been playing together for a really long time. The songwriting has evolved a bit. I can hear it. I’m very proud of my band and my musicians.”
He’s not the only one who has noticed: Speakeasy talked to Andrews the day after he played a show in Los Angeles in front of an audience that included Dr. Dre — a nerve-wracking proposition for a long-time fan of the hip-hop icon.
“I don’t think I’ve ever been as nervous playing anything before. The feeling I had when I played at the White House, I had that feeling when Dr. Dre came,” Andrews said. “I grew up listening to him, and even still today his music influences my music. We jam around at sound check and play his music all the time.
“Say That to Say This” will be released Sept. 10 on Verve Records.
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Originally posted by Eric Danton, The Wall Street Journal. To listen to Trombone Shorty’s new album, please visit the original Wall Street Journal story.