B.E.T. Jazz Discovery Award winner 1999, Dale Fielder. If originality is the barometer of what truly makes a great jazz artist, Dale Fielder posesses this quality in abundance. It has earned him a position in the front ranks of saxophonists over the span of the last ten-plus years. In listening to Fielder perform today, it is without question that here is a saxophonist who has developed his own very personal and original voice. His originality can be experienced on several levels: he is a multi- instrumentalist that plays all three saxophones with equal authority; his original compositions and choice of rare, obscure jazz classics; and in his overall group concepts and constant variety of presentations. The integrity of his music and his strong belief in creating his own path is the most moving aspect presented by Fielder. He truly means so much of everything he plays, the effect of experiencing it, can best be described as 'spiritual. Fielder is originally from the Pittsburgh, PA, area and is now based in Los Angeles, by way of eight years in New York City. The international jazz community has been watching Fielder's career with keen interest since he first stepped on to the national jazz scene in 1993 with his first recording. A critical success early on, critics have praised Fielder's work as a composer, comparing his writing to Charles Mingus, Wayne Shorter and Duke Ellington. As a saxophone stylist, the one name that constantly comes up is John Coltrane of whom Fielder calls 'My Master and guiding light.' Others have mentioned the influences of Wayne Shorter, Joe Henderson, Dexter Gordon, Mobley and Rollins in his tenor playing; Charles Parker, Jackie McLean, Dolphy, Stitt and Donaldson, as well as that of his friend and mentor, Charles McPherson, in his alto playing. This new recording introduces the great talent of young pianist, Danny Grissett and also features long-time associates Thomas White, drums; Trevor Ware, bass and Fielder's nephew, Baltimore percussionsit Robert White, Jr. Fielder's most mature date yet, it features almost entirely new Fielder compostions and his strong passionate playing. When recently asked about his development as a saxophonist, Fielder had this to say: 'Well, I learned to play the old-fashioned way; by ear, off records at first, then on the bandstand with the older musicians who gave me a chance and the benefit of their knowledge. Although I went to school, I didn't learn this music in school like so many of the younger generation of jazz musicians. I'm fortunate in being a wee bit older and I caught the tail end of a great era in jazz where there were still jam sessions and you had to rely on your ear rather then your brain. Developing naturally in this way is why I think I sound different from a lot of guys. Technique can prevail to the point away from finding your own voice. And you have to work constantly to get past it to get to the truth of your own feelings or essence; and I like going there immediately once I put horn to mouth! The ear will teach you the mystery and metaphysics of the music. Therein lies the path I'm going, ---to possess the ability to move hearts!'