Wayman Tisdale

Rebound

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In the typically lengthy thank-you section included on his eighth CD, Rebound, Wayman Tisdale acknowledges his doctors, as well as the special devotion of associates, friends, and family during a troubled time, as his way of alluding to the bone cancer he suffered in the interim since his last album. "When life tries to get you down," he says at the outset of the title track that opens the disc, "it's the perfect time for a rebound." That is about as much reference as he makes to his physical challenge, however. Otherwise, the listener might suppose that things are flowing as smoothly as ever for him. Certainly, they are musically. Rebound is another characteristic contemporary jazz effort for Tisdale, in which his fluid bass playing is heard within the context of highly programmed rhythm tracks. To provide contrast, a few vocals turn up, the most high-profile of them being country star Toby Keith's turn at Barry White's "Never, Never Gonna Give Ya Up." Seeking legitimacy, Keith plays it straight, never hamming the song up as much as White himself did, but that keeps it from being as fun as it might be. More impressive is the Gap Band's Robert Wilson on "Watch Me Play Again," which draws a parallel to that bass-happy group, and gospel singer Marvin Sapp also makes a strong impression on the closer, "Grateful," which also may speak implicitly to Tisdale's resolve to overcome his illness and get back to plucking his bass.

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