Comprised of guitarists Sonny Greenwich, his son Sonny Greenwich, Jr., bassist Al Baculis, keyboardist James Gelfand and drummer Jim Hillman, the group Meantime is not your average jazz group. It's also not your average rock group - but it has elements of both. The intriguing compositions, written by the Greenwiches and Al Baculis, also contain elements of funk and ambient music, and are sure to appeal to a broad base of listeners. Sonny Greenwich is one of the best-kept secrets in jazz, both in his native Canada, the United States and abroad. He has played and/or recorded with such artists as John Handy, Hank Mobley, Paul Bley and Miles Davis, and he has also recorded several very good albums as a leader.
With his fluid, ethereal tone, Greenwich is unlike any other guitarist. Indeed, one would be hard pressed to find another musician (in any style) that plays with such conviction; one is spellbound by the beauty of his playing and impressed by the music's simplicity and directness. Listen to his solos on the album's title track, "Welcome: Mother Earth", and prepare to have your breath taken away. Sonny Greenwich Jr. is the guitarist and composer of the award-winning Montreal-based rock group Bootsauce, who have made four excellent recordings for Mercury/Polydor since they were signed in 1989. While he's a very different player from his father, the Meantime recording reveals other facets of his musical personality.
Sonny plays throughout with grace and finesse, but make no mistake, there's still plenty of his trademark wailing to be found here! He also produced the album. Bassist Al Baculis is also from a gifted family, with both of his parents noted musicians. Al's extensive musical background includes a stint in the jazz group The Beards, prior to joining Bootsauce. His bass sound is enviable; rich and full. James Gelfand, one of Canada's best pianists, has played and toured with Kenny Wheeler, Michael Brecker, Sonny Greenwich, Terry Clarke, Michel Donato, Alain Caron and Gino Vanelli. He is the recipient of both a Master's Degree in Jazz and a B.A. in Classical Music from the Eastman School of Music. Gelfand was a semi-finalist at the 1987 Thelonious Monk International Piano Competition, and his group was awarded First Prize at the Festival International de Jazz de Montreal in 1992.
He has also performed at Festivals in Montreux, Le Mans and Jacksonville, and has performed on over 25 recordings, including three as a leader. Winnipeg-born drummer Jim Hillman is leader of the Juno-Award winning group The Merlin Factor, which has recorded two albums. The group was also voted "Best Electric Jazz Group" two years in a row (1994 & 1995). Since his relocation to Montreal in 1975, Hillman has toured and recorded extensively with such artists as Oliver Jones, Ranee Lee, James Gelfand, Helmut Lipsky and Sonny Greenwich.