On Shades of Truth Anderies surrounds himself with musicians who are collaborators, bandmates (in the band Slumgum), players that are near and dear to his musical heart, and artists that have admirable resumes: vocalist Dwight Trible (Pharaoh Sanders, Billy Higgins, Horace Tapscott's Pan African Peoples' Arkestra, Charles Lloyd, Billy Childs, Kenny Burrell, Kenny Garrett, Steve Turre, Harold Land, Harry Belafonte, Patrice Rushen, Babatunde Lea, Ernie Watts, Kahlil El Zabar, as well as contemporary soul artists like LA Reid and DJ Rogers); tenor saxophonist Jonathan Armstrong (Slumgum, Vinny Golia, Bennie Maupin, Butch Morris, Hugh Ragin); alto saxophonist and flutist Gavin Templeton (Vinny Golia, Charlie Haden, Joshua White, Nels Cline, Joe La Barbera, Larry Koonse, Darek Oles, Butch Morris, Peter Epstein, daKAH Hip Hop Orchestra, The Temptations, Wayne Newton); bass clarinetist Brian Walsh (Peter Maxwell Davies, Bobby Bradford, Nels Cline, Larry Koonse, Muhal Richard Abrams, the Henry Mancini Orchestra, the Riverside Philharmonic); pianist Rory Cowal (Slumgum, Hugh Ragin, Bennie Maupin, Butch Morris, Premasoul); trumpeter Daniel Rosenboom (Vinny Golia, Los Angeles Philharmonic New Music Group, Southwest Chamber Music, Long Beach Opera, Wadada Leo Smith, Miroslav Tadic, Markus Stockhausen); and bassist David Tranchina (Slumgum, Hugh Ragin, Bennie Maupin, Nate Wood, Bobby Watson, Mike Barone, Butch Morris, Vinny Golia, Larry Koonse, Joe La Barbera).
Attainment - while composing this piece Anderies was contemplating accomplishment and the beauty of life's circular motion: "when we achieve one thing, doors are opened that lead to new struggle. After struggling we attain something, each time becoming a little wiser," he explained.
Shades of Truth - "I wrote this song specifically for my collaboration with Dwight Trible on the album. The vibe and lyrics of the piece take on the spirit and mission I sense when I listen to Dwight. The lyrics speak to my belief in both a seeking spirit as well as self empowerment as a means of being true to oneself", said Anderies.
Thunder - This piece dates back to a time when Anderies' writing was influenced by the music of John and Alice Coltrane, as well as Pharaoh Sanders. Recently, when the drummer reconnected with this music, his decision to write lyrics for the piece revealed a new meaning. He explains, "as long as I can remember, I have been obsessed with the sound and energy of thunder. I remember one storm in particular on a day when I was back home in Denver visiting my old drum teacher. We sat outside watching the lightning and feeling the roar of the thunder as it vibrated through our beings, and I was fascinated by its power, strength, confidence, and grace. Many cultures recognize this energy in their folklore; the Greeks worship Thor while the Yoruba praise Shango. Though we cannot become thunder, we can access the energy and spirit it represents in our own lives."
Vermillion - Inspired byAnderies' love of Beethoven's string quartets. While all of the tracks on the album include members of the collaborative group Slumgum, this is the only piece that features the band itself.
Three-Four vs. Six-Eight Four-Four Ways - This piece was written by pianist Hasaan Ibn Ali and recorded in 1964 with Art Davis and Max Roach. The album, made up entirely of unique compositions by Hasaan, is the only recorded documentation of a brilliant artist who fell into obscurity. "Needless to say this record has been very influential on my development and I was just dying to play some music from it!"
Aren't You So Lovely - "This composition has personal meaning for me. Written no more than two weeks before the recording date, it coincided with a lack of faith and confidence in myself, followed by the realization that I was bigger than the problems I was facing. At the time, I had put my energy into getting to know someone who eventually pushed me away. When I wrote this song I was toying with the way my emotions took turns between "Aren't you so Lovely" (with the perspective of an admirer) and "Aren't you so Lovely?" (having a hint of sarcasm). The music took on a much deeper meaning when on my first performance of the piece I accidentally called it "Aren't You So Lonely." Fortunately for me, a very special person (my current girlfriend) must have caught on to that. I couldn't be happier that she did. The tune has now returned to "Aren't You So Lovely", from the perspective of a happy admirer."
Clear Eyes of the Moon - This title, and some of the lyrics, were taken from a poem by the Buddhist philosopher, Daisaku Ikeda, which reflects on the symbiosis of the vastness of the universe with the vastness of our lives.
Lenny - Originally written for a collaboration that Slumgum did with a chamber ensemble. The lyrics apply to the idea of loss, expressing the idea of life and death, and the mystery, confusion, and expansiveness that they represent.
Wild Ox Moan - "This resonates with me in a different way each time I hear it. It was written by Vera Hall and recorded for the Library of Congress in the 1930s. Hall was the wife of a coal miner in Alabama, and eventually gained national exposure with the help of Alan Lomax. To me, the song speaks to the humanity in all of us. We all need each other to live in this world; the relationships and the bonds of trust we cultivate in our daily lives ultimately lay the foundations for the types of lives we choose to live."
More on Trevor Anderies: Resolve, innovation and passion define Anderies' musical direction. Based in Los Angeles, he performs locally and on the national scene with many groups including Slumgum, the Walsh Set Trio and the Nigerian Talking Drum ensemble. He received his Bachelor's degree in Jazz Studies at the California Institute of the Arts where he studied drum set with Joe La Barbera and Ewe music from Ghanaian master drummer Alfred Ladzekpo. Among Anderies' other mentors are Paul Romaine, Bennie Maupin, Darek Oles, Alfonso Johnson, and Vinny Golia. He has had the opportunity to perform with a wide array of artists, most notably: Dwight Trible, Bennie Maupin, Ron Miles, Larry Coryell, Slumgum, Darek Oles, Ron Miles, Greg Gisbert, Nestor Torres, Eric Gunnison, Hugh Ragin, Charlie Haden's Liberation Music Orchestra, Vinny Golia, Francis Awe, Alfred Ladzekpo, and others.