Recent reviews of the CD "From The Heart"

Gary Husband turns in a strong piano and keyboard performance on this trio effort, supplemented with vocals by Georgie Fame and Jack Bruce, with Steve Topping on acoustic guitar on one track each. The general tone of the record is that of a modern piano trio in the tradition of Bill Evans. Husband along with Mick Hutton on bass and Gene Calderazzo on drums approach the trio form with sensitivity, and their treatment of standards by Kern, Porter and Jobim is refreshing while Husband's originals such as "Not Even The Rain" (featuring Steve Topping) are hauntingly beautiful. Recommended.
David Dorkin, FUSE Magazine, U.S. (Online), 12/99

Sound effects, synth lines, guest singers, unusual arrangements of standard tunes, all help to distinguish this trio's approach to the more traditional piano output. Indeed, Husband's vision of the trio is refreshingly bold, both muscially and conceptually. His re-workings of standards such as "Just The Way You Look Tonight" or "Take 5" include evolved "blowing" sections, composed episodes within the song structure which avoid the 32-bar song form, and often have only an oblique reference to the original harmonic content. Which as much thought apparently being given to sound FX (dog growls), lines of dialogue and wacky synth sounds as to the conventional or structural considerations one is given the impression here of a quirky, inventive, humorous intellect behind the music, the approach being both musically authoritative and highly personal. Husband the pianist exhibits virtuosity, a great rhythmical drive (unsurprisingly) and an individual harmonic sense, happily devoid of many pianistic cliches. Mick Hutton is superb as always and Gene Calderazzo simultaneously drives, whilst displaying great sensitivity and a penchant for interplay, Husband's compositions indicate that the trio could as easily evolve into a more adventurous Eurocentric jazz unit as it could continue to mine the American Song Book repertoire. Apparently, the world is your ostrich Mr. Husband.
Roy Powell, MUSICIAN Magazine (UK Journal of the Musician's Union), 12/99

Having come a long way since his first professional outing as a drummer with the Syd Lawrence Orchestra at the sprightly age of 16, it's clear from the opening bars of Jerome Kern's "Just The Way You Look Tonight" that Husband is a pianist of clarity and invention. Guest Jack Bruce does a fine job on "Once I Loved", where Husband displays the deft touch and detailed understanding needed to present Jobim's multi-layered piece. The beautiful, if disappointingly short, "Not Even The Rain" ends the first disc, with bassist Mick Hutton getting a chance to make his presence felt. Husband smoulders, whilst old cohort Steve Topping sits in on guitar. Standout tracks a-plenty on disc two include a brooding "Afro Blue", on which Husband lets loose with sparkling results, and "Miles Davis" , all fire and brimstone with the added bonus of an in-form Calderazzo. As a drummer, Husband has firmly established himself as a contender. If this album is anything to go by he has a fine future as a pianist also. A thoroughly enjoyable release.

I think the trio is terrific!
Michael Cuscuna, BLUE NOTE RECORDS

Gary Husband, major-domo of this extravaganza, is a consumate improviser, and his "new" trio is filled out with players who are as smoothly accomplished as he is - particularly bassist Mick Hutton. Much of this massive two-disc set is full of shimmering piano Jazz highlighted by Husband's non-flashy but intricately wrought and highly original improvisations. He often takes advantage of opportunities to venture into unusual melodic possibilities and explore motifs for all their worth, and such opportunities are provided in ample numbers by the solid foundation Hutton and Calderazzo lay down. There are a few surprises, as well. The Husband original entitled "Miles Davis" recalls the trumpeters mid 80's work with Palle Mikkelborg, replete with synthesized sonic melodramatics that are a pleasant detour here. Of the parade of special guests, this trio is so solid that none really find a great deal to add, but all of them are pleasant enough, especially the boffo Georgie Fame, whose low-key vocals on "Deep In A Dream" are utterly at home here. Husband's group is never bombastic: even numbers like "Afro Blue", which John Coltrane, Sam Newsome, and others have rendered with terrific force, find a generally relaxed groove here, revealing the beauty of the melody with a pleasingly crepuscular sheen. This is the sort of revelation that Husband glories in, and pulls off magnificently.
Robert Spencer, CADENCE Magazine, N.Y. USA

"Many thanks for "From The Heart" - I am very impressed with the whole album and in particular two things - 1) The most fabulous, seminal arrangement of Take 5, and 2) G.H.'s playing - such dynamics! such style! such sensitivity! ...I'm knocked out by it. Sincerely wishing Gary Husband the success and airplay he deserves".
Sara Myatt, Radio Sultanate of Oman, (formally of Jazz FM N-West, U.K.).

"Some of the most original and best arrangements you've heard for years. You can never be sure of what is there for the ear until you've listened to it a few times...the album has so much to offer. I've followed Gary's career from pop star through live session player, but it wasn't until the last evening when he was playing drums for the amazing Geoff Keezer that I suddenly realised why pianists love his drumming and drummers, (particularly Billy Cobham) love his keyboard playing. It's his empathy for piano AND drums that puts him in a class apart from all others".
Brian Nott, Head of JAZZIZIT Records

"An impressive 90-minute debut album for Husband, hitherto best known for super-fast drum work with such as Allan Holdsworth. He's now said to be concentrating on piano (last heard, I think, on the Billy Cobham "Focused" album with Randy Brecker) and his post-Bill Evans style is featured to great advantage on originals and several re-arranged standards. The basic trio for most of the duration has Mick Hutton and Gene Calderazzo, who never put a foot wrong, and there are one-track guest appearances by Steve Topping (on acoustic guitar)and Clark Tracey, while two short closing items have Husband with saxist Pete Wareham and bassist Sam Burgess. We also get a standard ballad each from Nicki Leighton-Thomas, Georgie Fame and Jack Bruce, and a couple of tiny family-album audio snapshots. I wonder if a single CD without any of these extras wouldn't have even more impact, but this is well worth your time".
JAZZWISE Magazine, UK.

"A new direction, too, for Gary Husband, well known as a remarkably accomplished drummer, but now leading his own trio as a pianist. On the double-CD "From The Heart" he is joined by Mick Hutton and Gene Calderazzo for a programme of original pieces and standards which are given distinctly fresh treatments. This is the sort of project that shows how, in the right hands, the piano trio format can still sound fresh and surprising. Gary Husband's highly impressive abilities as a pianist are showcased throughout, and what shines through is his wholehearted, joyful approach to the music, as well as his liking for drama and contrasts. In this he is helped by the sympathetic responses of Hutton and Calderazzo - and the strengh of the empathy among them is clear throughout this sparkling performance. Guest appearances by Jack Bruce, Georgie Fame, Nicki Leighton-Thomas and Steve Topping are the icing on an already-rich cake. This new CD will establish him as a new force among pianists".
Pete Martin, JAZZ UK

ARTICLE. "RE-INTRODUCING GARY HUSBAND". "Billy Cobham has called the piano playing of Leeds-born musician Gary Husband "one of the best kept secrets in music". At thirty nine, and with a career that has embraced work with Gordon Beck, Allan Holdsworth and rock band Level 42 behind him, Husband's reputation has spent rather longer evolving than those of the generally more youthful guests of this column. But there's a catch. THAT was his reputation as a DRUMMER. Husband is also, as Billy Cobham realised, a superb jazz pianist - a talent this charismatic and emotional performer has mostly nurtured as a private pursuit these couple of decades past. In recent months he has at last decided to change all that, taking what he calls The New Gary Husband Trio on the road, with Mick Hutton on bass and Gene Calderazzo on drums. Husband's obvious affinity for the work of Bill Evans and Herbie Hancock runs through his restless, searching performances. Husband Senior was a composer with an enthusiasm for the works of Eric Satie and for East European music, and this influence went deep; so did the rigours of a full classical-piano training, which Gary Husband said enabled him to keep his technique intact even after a five-year layoff in exasperation at the attitudes of some of his teachers. "They'd say things like Oscar Peterson was much better than Bill Evans because Evans' technique had flaws" he recalls with feeling. "It made no sense to me - I really have enjoyed all music. People can enjoy different foods, why not music?" Gary Husband is self-taught on the drums, and treated drumming as his career and his main income for years, playing piano and writing music largely for himself. But last Autumn he had a visitation he can't explain - cancelling gigs, staying in his flat in a dressing gown for a fortnight, living on sandwiches and cigarettes, furiously composing and arranging. Two discs - the synths set "Diary Of A Plastic Box" on FMR, and the trio set "From The Heart" have followed. "I have an over-ripe capacity for emotion", Husband says fervently. "Self expression is survival to me. I need music". Catch his band live and you'll hear what he means".
John Fordham, JAZZ UK,

The name may be familiar - Gary Husband was the drummer in Level 42 way back when - but the instrument here is a surprise. Husband plays damn fine piano for a drummer; in fact he plays damn fine piano for a pianist! 
With bassist Mick Hutton and Gene Calderazzo on drums he tackles a wide range of material, from Antonio Carlos Jobim's "Once I Loved" to Dave Brubeck's "Take 5", Jerome Kern's "Just The Way You Look Tonight" to mongo Santamaria's "Afro Blue". 
Like Swedish pianist Esbjorn Svensson, he adds subtle synthesizer colours to mostly acoustic piano playing. He also shows great wit and creativity - for example, in his arrangement and choice of chord voicings to revitalise that old and often hackneyed warhorse "Take 5". 
This is a double CD and might have made a better single one; it also has guest vocals from Jack Bruce, Georgie Fame and others which could probably be dispensed with. Husband doesn't really need to dress up his programmes - his piano-playing, arrangements and interaction with Hutton and Calderazzo are more than enough to hold the listener's interest. ****
Peter Bacon, BIRMINGHAM POST Newspaper, England. 06/11/99.

Gary Husband plays a lot of piano, especially on this wonderful two CD collection of standards and originals. Joining Husband; Mick Hutton, bass, and Gene Calderazzo on drums with special guests Jack Bruce, Georgie Fame, Nicki Leighton-Thomas and (guitarist) Steve Topping. There's also a terrific arrangement of Paul Desmond's Take 5 that allows Husband ample room to spin a clever solo over Calderazzo's rotating eurhythmy. Husband's dazzling technique never gets puffy or overblown. This one's a real keeper.

With this double album it's not so much the arriving, but the trip in-between that's so interesting. This particular musical journey explores nuances of undiluted jazz expression, winding along complex paths leading right back to where it began as a stream of consciousness. Paul Desmond's "Take 5" - a complex number to play at the best of times - sees Gary stridently turning a full circle leaving the listener wondering where the deviation began and where it ended. He draws upon a myriad of techniques and ideas, delivering them with sensitivity, passion and clarity. Four of the eighteen tracks were written by Gary himself, but among others, he takes songs penned by Jerome Kern, and Cole Porter and almost reinvents them with his improvisational skills. "Le Coco" (written by Gary for his pet poodle Coco), begins and ends with the dog himself making his vocal presence felt. There are also special guests Georgie Fame, Jack Bruce, Nicki Leighton-Thomas and Steve Topping on some tracks. The final track, "Not Even The Rain", featuring a wonderful interjection of acoustic bass by Mick Hutton, is a touching tribute to Gary's late father. At the end of the track he's included a small piece of actual BBC radio footage of his Dad being interviewed about Gary as a boy of twelve. File this album under C for COMPELLING!
Glo Simmons, Reviews, THE LEEDS GUIDE, Yorkshire, UK.

FROM THE HEART well conveys the restless nature of Gary Husband's talent. Not content with his fame as a drummer, he has in recent years switched to piano, but this album by the New Gary Husband Trio seems to be trying to be at least three albums at once. As yet, I'm not sure whether this betrays a lack of focus or reveals a wide-arching concept. CD1 begins with a questing piano treatment of "Just The Way You Look Tonight", one of several beautiful ballads interwoven with more explosive material: Kern's classic and "I Concentrate On You" appear twice each. On keyboards Gary Husband ranges from the declamatory to the raucous, insinuating sound effects into piano melodies. Then from time to time there is a soulful ballad sung by Georgie Fame, Nicki Leighton-Thomas or Jack Bruce with Husband's piano providing an attentive accompaniment. Add in live performances planted between the studio tracks and a final reprise of two songs with a completely different line-up and you can see why "From The Heart" can confuse, but not bore. Mick Hutton and Gene Calderazzo, the regular rhythm section pairing, respond with enormous skill and versatility throughout.
Ron Simpson, THE JAZZ RAG, Birmingham, UK.

Known also as a virtuoso fusion drummer, Husband here gloriously affirms his keyboard brilliance. A conventional piano/bass/drums trio is featured (with some guests added) and Husband displays a deeply imaginative piano dynamism and an especially creative and musical facility with electronics. His repertoire though, is pure and tasty: Van Heusen, Porter, Kern, as well as Larry Young tunes and other, lesser known standards.
Colm O'Sullivan, The SUNDAY TRIBUNE, Dublin, Ireland. 21/02/00

Dear Gary, 
Thanks for responding so fast and thanks for sending the albums! The CDs arrived 
safely and I have to say: I am very impressed especially with the double CD set. 
Dear Gary, I just want to let you know that I picked tracks from the double for a 30 minutes 
Jazz-Show which will run in August - and I'm quite sure that quite a few people 
will be amazed about this other brilliant side of your talents. I'm familiar with 
the Challenge label. They're definitely a good way to go to get more attention 
and at least some distribution over here. And they should be happy to have you as 
an artist in their catalogue. Good luck for that! 
Let's stay in touch. 
Thanks again. 
All the best, 
Arne Schumacher 
Radio Bremen 2 
Jazz & Pop Department 


"Unbelievable music-who is singing?--and you sound great-the arrangements 
(afro, spring, etc) are very clever-wonderful chords my friend-and of course 
the drums-you should make a duo record with dejonette-each on piano and 
drums!!!-very impressive-how come everyone doesn't know about you?--hope we 
can play sometime in either capacity-thanks for the music Gary-"