Streams is Doug's first recording as a leader, and exemplifies his somewhat unique style and approach to the jazz piano idiom, stemming from his unorthodox background for a jazz player. Growing up as a self-taught blues and rock electric guitarist, Schlink enjoyed minor success as a teen both in the performance and recording arenas appearing as a sideman on records with R&B singer, Ben E. King (of The Drifters fame), and the popular British folk rocker, Donovan, among others. Doug's first exposure to jazz was at age 20, and he credits the late Bill Evans as his primary influence to abandon the guitar to study jazz piano. Lacking the formal classical training evident in most jazz pianists of this era, Doug's style is "earthier", at times forceful, with a hard rhythmic drive and swing, evocative of his blues and R&B roots. While his vocabulary and ability to communicate within the jazz idiom grew over the years, he never lost that rough-around-the-edges "street player" directness; a quality that so many of his listeners find appealing. Streams is a classic piano trio presentation featuring a well balanced mix of material. There is a nice sampling of some classic "standards" from the Great American songbook composers such as Richard Rodgers and Harold Arlen, as well as works penned by some of the great jazz artists of the 20th century, including entries from Miles Davis, Bill Evans, Clifford Brown and Antonio Carlos Jobim. Doug's performances are superbly enriched by the energetic and intuitive drum work of Tom Devino and the rock steady yet creative bass lines from Steve Taylor. The trio finds the pocket, and therein swings and delivers with heart and wonderful interplay. And while Doug would be the first to tell you virtuosity is not a term to be used to describe his playing, Streams showcases a solid jazz trio, delivering solid performances of some great tunes, with honesty, emotion and a directness that captures the listener.
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