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Her 1st album at the tender age of 23 was due in part from her appearance with John Clayton on “It’s All In The Family” that caught the ear of the executives at Concord. Firefly was Emily’s first recording as leader and a promising debut. Joined by pianist Hank Jones, bassist Bob Maize and drummer Jake Hanna, Emily delivers an enjoyable hard bop beginning. The album wasn’t groundbreaking by early-’80s standards — although recorded in 1981, it sounds like it could have been recorded in 1961. Emily brought a lot of potential to lively, swinging performances of Horace Silver’s “Strollin’,” McCoy Tyner’s “Inception,” and Montgomery’s “Movin’ Along.” She also provided two original tunes (“Perk’s Blues” and “The Firefly”) and pleasantly surprises listeners by unearthing a pretty but lesser-known Antonio Carlos Jobim song titled “Look to the Sky.” Her heartfelt interpretation demonstrates that the Jobim melody deserved to be much better known.
” Remler is a prodigy and a phenomenon.. Too much! ” ~ W. Royal Stokes
Emily’s second recording as a leader found the 24-year-old guitarist still very much playing in the Wes Montgomery vein, although her own musical personality was beginning to emerge. She is joined by pianist James Williams, bassist Don Thompson and drummer Terry Clarke on a challenging set of material filled with obscurities and rarely performed gems such as Cannonball Adderley’s “Cannonball”, Dexter Gordon’s “For Regulars Only”, McCoy Tyner’s “Search for Peace”, and Monty Alexander’s “Eleuthra”. Better known are “In Your Own Sweet Way” and “Afro Blue”, an amazing tune written by Mongo Santamaria, popularized by Coltrane, but perfected for solo guitar by Emily. She also contributes two originals, “Waltz For My Grandfather” a gentle and elegant Jim Hall-esque melody and “Pocket Wes”, a brandish rhythmic romp.
” Emily Remler has made a swift and admirable advance from promising youngster to creative and fast growing professional… the proof is nowhere more apparent than in this most carefully planned and brilliantly executed set of performances. ” ~ Leonard Feather
Her third Concord recording was a strong step forward, as she started to really find a voice of her own. Rather than a standard piano-bass-drums trio, Remler teamed up with trumpeter John D’Earth, bassist Eddie Gomez and drummer Bob Moses. Her three originals were challenging, and the quartet also performed Sam Jones’ swinging “Del Sasser,” Duke Ellington’s lesser-known “Searchin’” and Keith Jarrett’s “Coral. ” Throughout Emily shows that her future lay beyond straight-ahead bebop. All in all, this is one of the strongest
of her solo recordings.
” Here is a brilliant, fast developing talent, not merely surrounding herself with accompanists, but becoming part of a splendidly unified group. I suspect that Transitions will be long remembered as one of the giant steps in the evolution of Emily Remler. “ ~ Leonard Feather
While her earlier dates were very much in the bop mainstream, this fine effort (in a quartet with trumpeter John D’Earth, who teamed with her in Transitions, bassist Eddie Gomez and drummer Bob Moses) found her looking ahead and finding the composer within, on seven diverse originals. She comes through with authority and her presence, her warmth, and the fresh flow of lyricism is a joy to experience. It was a strong and fairly adventurous effort for them all and one of the finest recordings of her short career as a composer.
” Remler’s presence – the fusion of sound, time, and ideas – has an immediacy and strength of identity… This is more than exceptional talent; this is someone who, from the top of the first chorus, lets you know who she is. “ ~ Nat Hentoff
East To Wes 1988
Here Emily continues to raise her game. Her fluid technique brightens such seldom heard numbers as the Clifford Brown’s melodic “Daahoud” and her luminous arrangement of Claude Thornhill’s lovely “Snowfall”. Also included is the relaxed rendition of “Sweet Georgia Fame”, the first ever guitar version of “Hot House”, her incredible props for Herb Ellis in “Blues For Herb” and of course the tribute to Wes, “East To Wes”, for which she explains, “Wes was one of the greatest improvisers I ever heard. His feeling was happy, his soul was beautiful. He made listener’s feel.” The polished rhythm section includes the masterful pianist Hank Jones, bassist Buster Williams, and drummer Marvin “Smitty” Smith. Maybe her best Swing album ever.
” Emily Remler’s time is so sure, so flowing, that it’s as natural to her as breathing. So is her warmth – of tone and conception. She’s a natural story-teller, keeping the narrative line alive with an exact sense of dynamics and color. “
~ Nat Hentoff
This Is Me 1990
Emily’s first and only album with Jusitce Records, and the premiere for her creative excursion into electric jazz-pop, where she incorporated pop and rock elements on her own terms but maintained her musical integrity and entirely avoided radio-oriented smooth jazz drivel. What remains constant is the warm and lyrical nature of her playing. While the influence of Wes Montgomery and Herb Ellis remains, some of these pieces indicate that she was paying close attention to Pat Metheny. She was most proud of this recording, on which she wrote or co-wrote all the material except “Love Colors” and was genuinely overjoyed by the outstanding musicians involved in it’s creation, the likes of the great Brazilian guitarist, Romero Lubambo, pianists, Bill O’Connell and David Benoit, bassist Lincoln Goines, trombonist Jay Ashby and drummer Ricky Sebastian. It was a bold statement for where she was headed and why we wanted to go with her.
” Emily had a unique way of touching us all. Her abilities as a guitarist were easily matched by her enthusiasm for the music- her music. She was enjoying the freedom of a new musical direction when we recorded this set of songs. Ever so critical of herself and ever so passionate about her music, this collection of material was to be the latest adventure in a constantly evolving identity. She loved this record, the excellence of those involved and the commitment she made to herself by stepping out on the edge. “ ~ Jeffrey Weber
Retrospective Vol. 1: Standards 1991
Retrospective Vol. 2: Compositions 1991
Companion songbook 1996
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