Album Remarks & Appraisals:
"Percussionist Brad Dutz leads an all-star ensemble on this program of his creative compositions. Each piece tells a story. The ensemble, including many of Southern California's leading improvising artists, accurately shades each piece with colors and patterns that evoke various moods. The session's standout instrumental voices include Dutz on marimba and vibraphone, Kim Richmond on clarinet, John Fumo on trumpet, Anders Swanson on bass, Sara Schoenbeck on bassoon, Ellen Burr on piccolo, Bob Carr on bass clarinet, and Chris Wabich on steel drum. Each takes his or her solo opportunity and runs with it freely.
In concert, Dutz moves back and forth from marimba to vibraphone and his other assorted percussion instruments as the music takes shape. He creates his music with a natural ease, simply letting the mood settle in gradually and shift when needed.
Nine Gardeners Named Ned comes with an exciting improvising ensemble that numbers just over nine. But gardeners they are, as each reaches out to cultivate Dutz's musical ideas in accordance with his planned outlines.
You have to love these song titles. Anyone who's ever tried their luck at home and garden landscaping knows the feeling. By setting these thoughts and images to music, Dutz captures every nuance as his compositions take on the magnetic force of a classic symphonic tone poem. The nine suite-like movements that he's drafted provide the ensemble with plenty of room to stretch. Collectively, they form a cohesive ensemble that delivers Dutz's intended impressions accurately.
Highly recommended, Nine Gardeners Named Ned carries jazz's modern mainstream on its shoulders with a dazzling musical display that proves its rewards emphatically." -AllAboutJazz