CD: Precious Moments by Jens Hausmann
16 original pieces, instrumental crossover fingerstyle guitar, no overdubs, including all styles and genres, Jens has collected in over 35 years. For his 50th Anniversary in July Jens Hausmann releases an album to resume what he’s got so far.
With an extensive background in all kinds of styles and genres and a lifelong passion for guitar music, Jens Hausmann has come a long way from his debut with original singer/songwriter material to instrumental crossover fingerstyle pieces, as it seems. But eventually, after honing his craft for over 30 years, with his sophomore album “Precious Moments” the virtuoso guitarist has come full circle, since he started out with jazz duets and jazz bands and studying classical music in the first place. The new album features solo fingerstyle guitar music without any overdubs, recorded in a vaulted cellar with just two microphones. A lot of improvisation is included, played passionately by a classically trained artist with a blend of styles somewhere between jazz, latin, folk, blues, classical and world music.
Feel free to check or even share this little compilation on YouTube. Maybe you would even like to order your autographed copy right here, thank you!
02 Dolce Far Niente 4:54
03 Light As A Feather 4:24
04 Angels’ Share 5:04
05 Heureka 5:01
06 Blue Chestnut 5:09
07 Jerry’s Blues 2:59
08 Sigue Tu Corazón 4:52
09 Miles To Go 4:13
10 Right Now 5:57
11 For You 6:27
12 Rubber Biscuit 3:48
13 Glazed Donut 5:23
14 Tango For Django 3:52
15 Precious Moments 3:53
16 Two Notes One Love 4:10
Total time 73:50
All compositions & arrangements by Jens Hausmann
Recorded by Jens Hausmann at Martin-Luther-Kirche, Detmold
Mixed and mastered by Eddie Nünning at SoundResort, Lippstadt,
Artwork by Dirk Schelpmeier
There is an overwhelming new review on Rambles.net, thanks so much to Michael Scott Cain, who wrote so beautifully and made my day: “Precious Moments is a master class in fingerstyle guitar. (…) For just a single guitar, the variety on the album is remarkable. This one will spend a lot of time in your player.”
It has been a few years already, since I had the chance to record in the vaulted cellar of the parish hall at the Martin-Luther-Kirche in Detmold. For eight days I could experiment with many of my guitars, two microphones and a laptop in that beautiful sounding environment. The target was to match the right guitar to every individual piece and to have the result sound as natural as possible, like a real live performance. Hence for me passion won over perfectionism, trying to capture some magic moments. Editing had to be reduced to a minimum anyway, since all the takes turned out to be very different. Although the compositions are mostly structured like songs, jazz standards or even classical music there is a lot of improvisation involved, not only in terms of soloing but also when it comes to interpreting the tunes spontaneously in the feel of the moment, which is not common in the fingerstyle genre at all. Perhaps crossover guitar might work as a description: the hands of a classical or fingerstyle guitarist with the mind of a jazz musician. This is no coincidence. My variety of styles is strongly influenced by impressions from diverse European countries, since my wonderful partner is a tour operator specialized on themed tours. We travel a lot for REISEKULTOUREN, always out there in search of what is unique. Music is part of this, be it in Scotland or Andalucía. Once there Flamenco has turned my musical world upside down in no time. In the end to me these elements were a vital link to combine the worlds of classical guitar, fingerstyle and jazz all rolled into one. On the other hand I could find some similarities to Celtic music and even baroque recitatives in flamenco music, which do not seem obvious in the first place. The other hat I wear is working as a journalist for magazines like AKUSTIK GITARRE, which has also made a large impact. Writing about guitars, music and meeting so many fascinating people to hear their stories is always a priceless inspiration. So I hope the enthusiasm and joy I had putting this CD together shine through and that you enjoy listening as much as I did playing. Thanks for sharing these ‘Precious Moments’ with me.
Some words on the individual pieces
The opener with the funny name features some typical boom chic in the tradition of Chet Atkins. A friendly number in A major switching to a minor and back again, well possible, that it makes you want to hum along…
Dolce Far Niente
The sweet temptation of doing nothing! I wrote this instead of working on a review about a guitar, which inspired me to some percussive experiments. Don’t worry, the guitar could be sent back in one.
Light As A Feather
Now this one sounds more like classical guitar. It’s a cheerful jazzy waltz with a pretty melody to it. The improvised part was shaped while actually recording, even though it almost sounds arranged.
Many people visit Scotland for the whisky, others happen to find it there. In a distillery they tell you about how much get’s lost over the years while the whisky sleeps in casks. That’s called Angel’s Share, a mystery; someone must be guilty after all.
This steel string ballad is in dropped D and keeps changing through lots of variations.
I wrote this piece a long time ago when I mainly played in duos and small jazz ensembles. Later I tried to work it out as a solo piece and after all it did work, I found my way: Eureka!
This piece was fresh and new when I recorded the album. I guess one can even hear that and eventually it got the final structure in the recording process.
Teaching guitar means a lot of blues improvisation too. When a student asked for an example of how to comp oneself while playing a solo I came up with this. After that lesson I just had to work out some details. On my album ‘Back On The Track’ there is even a version with lyrics by the name ‘Shaggy Old Dog’.
Sigue Tu Corazón
Besides working as a musician and teaching guitar I write articles and reviews for magazines like Akustik Gitarre and BluesNews. So I was lucky enough to have a press trip to Andalucía. Flamenco became a major influence there, in away that spirit turned out to be the missing link for me in connecting all the genres and styles in my playing. The title: ‚Sigue Tu Corazón’ means: “Follow your heart“
Miles To Go
This is the other number in Dropped-D with a splash of celtic music. Maybe that’s what it sounds like, when one is on the road and having lots of appointments and places to visit in Scotland. My wife is a tour operator (Reisekultouren), so I get around a bit…
Instead of a watch we should all have a tattoo on our wrist, saying “Right Now”, because anytime it’s a good thing to do something, or start something new. This fingerstyle piece is more on the jazzy side and could be almost straight out of the Realbook, it’s fun to improvise on this too.
Imagine you had a blend between a biscuit and a jelly baby, through it against the wall and it bounces back in your mouth… This jumpy number is another blues.
David Lee Roth said: “Gimmie a bottle of anything and a glazed donut ….. TO GO!” Developed from two melodic motifs and 2 bass lines and a hint of Spanish influences.
Tango For Django
This is also one of my older duo-pieces being later arranged for one guitar like Heureka. Written for the late Django Reinhardt who might have never really played a tango. Well, over the years it changed, only a bit of Django and tango are still there.
12/8 time, Spanish influenced with a little bit of improvisation. It came in handy as the title track, since the whole recording was about collecting precious moments.
Two Notes – One Love
Vicente Amigo has a similar title with three notes, and of course there is the classic One Note Samba, I thought: why not have something in between. This is one of my personal favourites.
Point Of No Return
Recorded in 1996, ‘Point Of No Return’ features some tasty acoustic & electric rumba-blues style played on a Martin Dreadnought with some overdubs on an old Fender Stratocaster. Jens Hausmann sang & played this little duet all by himself with the help of the renowned recording engineer Dieter Denzer. 20 years ago it was released on the Wildwechsel Sampler Heimatklänge even before the debut album ‘Back On The Track’. Now it’s available again: www.cdbaby.com!
Debut CD: Back On the Track
This release from 1999 features original singer/songwriter music between jazz, blues, latin and folk. It’s the artist’s debut album of light blues, folk and jazz. Interesting if you are partial to some blues but like a bit of diversity in your listening. www.cdbaby.com