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Back to Discography Common Ground The New Gary Burton Quartet

divider Common Ground
Band Listing
Gary Burton, vibraphone and bandleader
Julian Lage, guitar
Scott Coley, bass
Antonio Sanchez, drums

Common Ground Tracklist

  1. 1.
    Late Night Sunrise
  2. 2.
    Never the Same Way
  3. 3.
    Common Ground
  4. 4.
    Was It So Long Ago?
  5. 5.
  6. 6.
    Last Snow
  7. 7.
    Did You Get It?
  8. 8.
    My Funny Valentine
  9. 9.
  10. 10.
    In Your Quiet Place


On Gary Burton’s debut release on Mack Avenue Records Common Ground, the Grammy-winning pioneer of the four-mallet technique of playing the vibes is not only delivering his first studio album since 2005, but is also introducing his latest band. Well-known throughout his five-decade career for his quartets (beginning with his 1967 group featuring Larry Coryell, Roy Haynes and Steve Swallow), Burton is returning to the configuration for the first time since the mid 90s. He expresses great enthusiasm for the new band’s alchemy. I’ve always liked the vibraphone-guitar sound, says Burton, whose masterful vibes glisten throughout Common Ground. It’s something that I discovered when Nashville country guitarist Hank Garland invited me in the 60s to record with him. The sound of the two instruments together has an ideal timbre and coolness.


Common Ground has uncommon range of tone and mood and texture for a Burton album, partly because all four players contribute compositions that reflect their contrasting personalities. Sanchez’s “Did You Get It?” is a super-quick asymmetrical postmodern blues that slows only for the composer’s cryptic drum breaks. Few groups can make 7/4 gracefully swing like Colley’s “Never the Same Way.” Lage’s “Etude” sounds classical; the composer and Burton jointly solve its intricate puzzle. Burton’s “Was It So Long Ago?” is a quietly dramatic tango.