For records on the Big Tree Music label only: Click on cover art for track listings and samples. See below for reviews.
For records on the Solaire Record label, please visit the individual page for each album.
“The Seeds of Happiness”
Bass Player Magazine: “The concise compositions combined with absolutely flawless performances make it a beautiful record”
The Wire magazine: “Armed with a mighty 1961 Fender Precision bass guitar that has been plugged into an Ampeg Rocket bass amplifier, Los Angeles bass player Jeffrey Roden explores the complex (almost mathematical) intricacies of an instrument that is usually associated with rock music. Roden’s more subtle approach is just as strident, but the music he drags out of his bass is almost Fahey-like in its approach, as it melancholically rumbles overhead like distant thunder and allows resonating notes to hang in the air. Consisting of 12 ‘Themes’, Seeds Of Happiness Part 1 (Roden’s fourth CD) was recorded live in the studio with minimal overdubbing, a technique that has brought a satisfyingly giant buzz of freshness to the project.
Audiophile Auditions: “In a Silent Way sessions but without Miles or any front line at all. You could sort of conjure up the upper melodic line in your mind while listening, and the same is true of Seeds of Happiness. It can be a fascinating exercise.”
“The Floor of the Forest”
Bradley Smith, Billboard Magazine: “First-rate collection of serious music. It is a great album.”
Robert Rich, Composer/Performer: “Unique and beautiful. Reminds me of the ‘Obscure’ releases of the seventies with pieces by Jan Steele and some John Cage piano pieces like ‘in a landscape’.”
Bart Plantenga, programmer, Other Side of Amsterdam radio: “One of the hardest things in making soft music is to keep it interesting and compelling. I think you do that here. Very beautiful and plaintive material that makes me think immediately of Durutti Clumn, Nick Drake or Arthur Russell. Highly recommended.”
“Songs for Susan”
Liza Richardson, radio programmer, KCRW Los Angeles: “On ‘Mary Ann’s Dream’ and ‘Songs for Susan’, Jeffrey Roden creates an experience of sound and texture that is as vast as it is intimate. His warm nimble adventurous bass lines glide across a land of headphone delight. Ear candy while listening to a sonic painting.”
Richard Ellis, buyer, Aron’s Records Los Angeles: “Jeffrey Roden’s release ‘Songs for Susan’ exudes warmth, beauty, and an uncommon subtle intelligence.”
Bassics Magazine: “Very thematic in nature, “Song for Susan”, evokes haunting melodies through minimalist playing, with lots of open space.”
Pasadena Weekly: “Ambient meets Intellectual Jazz”
“Mary Ann’s Dream”
Los Angeles Times: “Dreamy solo work from the bassist who looks to Charlie Mingus, Oscar Pettiford, and Miles Davis for inspiration”
Cadence Magazine: “Mary Ann’s Dream is an almost minimalist journey through sparse atmospheric textures dominated by Roden’s electric bass soloing and thematic playing. Roden’s work is extremely focused and conceptually pure-the emotional impact of his music is consistently the same fabric throughout this disc.”
Hears Music: “Introspective and quiet, this recording respects silence and its use in musical composition. A wonderfully haunting must have for all electric bass players and fans.”