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Shut Wide Open was a joint project with Trumpeter, Ken Cervenka, and was the first of two Gertz albums for the Double-Time Jazz Records label. The album also features Jerry Bergonzi (saxophone), Bruce Barth (piano), and Jorge Rossy (drums). Four members of the quintet all contribute original tunes to this mix. Gertz composed four compositions on this album. Cervenka contributes the bossa-flavored “Booga Chacha Lu,” and title track "Shut Wide Open." Barth finished his lone contribution, "The Revolving Door," the second day of the session, and it turned out to be an epic piece and a highlight of the project. Bergonzi's compositions are "I See You," and "Toots"

Double-Time Jazz Records


The way these players masterfully jumped into the material and found ways to make it their own, speaks to the caliber of talent and the essence of improvisation... when they put it down on paper, they have a plan, a goal. When they join forces with their instruments, their instincts and their solos, they bring it to life.

- Ken Franckling


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On Cervernka's title track, "Shut Wide Open," which is a take on the chord changes of "I've Got Rhythm:"

Most people use the same bridge but Ken’s is slightly different. It goes down a whole step then works its way up chromatically to a substitute dominant chord. Ken and Jerry’s solo exchanges leading into Jorge’s drum solo are really excellent. It’s a multiple improvisation of contemporary rhythms, lines and harmonies.

- Bruce Gertz


The aspect of seeing a tune for the first time and playing it down, is as fresh an improvisation as you’ll get. When you don’t know a tune and don’t have expectations, it can make for some nice solos

- Ken Cervenka


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