“Colin Dean is ready for prime-time. His writing, his playing, his leadership, all display a maturity far beyond his years. I’ve watched him develop and hone his skills with my own eyes, heard it with my own ears. Colin is ready for prime-time.”  – Buster Williams

“Depth of thought in the compositions, lyricism, and sensitivity in the playing with a touch of world rhythms are the hallmarks of this recording. To find these qualities in someone as young as Colin is indeed a joy to behold.” – Bobby Sanabria

Recent Reviews

“Shiwasu” CD Review by George W. Harris,

“Bassist/composer Colin dean leads an empathetic quartet through a collection of creative originals plus a couple well arranged standards. Along with Sean Nowell/ts-ss, Colin Staranahan and the gentle fingers of Rachel Z/p, he produces open and spacious pieces like the easy to like “Growth” and “Wakan.” Nowell’s soprano on the former is warm and clean, while Rachel Z’s touch throughout simply glistens. The take of “My Ship” and “My Romance” have a nice modern edge to them, with Dean’s bass flexible yet firm. A nice and gracious product.”

“Shiwasu” CD Review – by Bill Milkowski, Jazz Times

“With pianist Rachel Z, saxophonist Sean Nowell and polyrhythmic whirlwind Colin Stranahan on drums, bassist Colin Dean reveals rare sensitivity and lyricism on his winning debut as a leader. Engaging originals like ‘Growth’ and ‘Wakan’ hint at a world-music influence, while ‘Akasha’ carries a hip-hop flavored groove. One of Dean’s strongest pieces here, ‘Brooklyn Ferry’, is highlighted by Z’s shimmering piano playing. As he charts a fresh and dynamic course, Dean also shows reverence for the jazz tradition in his buoyant waltz-time interpretation of ‘My Ship’, as well as a straightfoward rendition of ‘My Romance’ that finds Z swinging with abandon.”

“Shiwasu” CD Review – by Selwyn Harris, Jazzwise Magazine UK

“Reflective latin-inspired jazz… elegant, meditative…”

“Shiwasu” CD Review – by Esther Callens, Birmingham Times

“An extraordinary recording. The selections are jazz based but at times infused with Hip Hop and World Music…”

Joe’s Pub Live Performance Review – by Layla Macoran, NY Examiner

“The peace of the first song was bright with jewel tones and light. The complete group, consisting of Dean on bass, Sean Nowell on sax, Rachel Z on piano, and Colin Stranahan on drums, lived up to the quality achieved on Shiwasu. The instrumental pieces delivered class and contemporary sophistication… Dean’s skill at anchoring the whole thing helped to make the very snowy night worthwhile”

Interview with Colin Dean in Jazz Times – by Steve Caputo

Colin Dean discusses his background and influences with Jazz Times

“Shiwasu” CD Review – by Bob Gish, Jazz Inside Magazine

“Dean’s assembly of side personnel is stellar, most notably Rachel Z, a pianist and recording artist of some considerable recent repute, and Sean Nowell, another fresh voice whose tenor and soprano sax solos are custom fitted to Dean’s crafted and soothing bass tonalities. Colin Stranahan’s drums are, as well, a perfect match for this ensemble. His work on such dreamy, ethereal tunes as ‘Growth’ and ‘Wakan’ bespeaks the ageless, ancient sounds of Xanadu and the primal rhythms of the orient. . . . All of the solos are superb and when each musician takes a turn it’s compelling, if not spell binding, the solos enhanced by the absolutely synchronized accompaniment – all contributing to a special beauty and sense of regeneration much in need in today’s harried, frenetic world.”

“Shiwasu” CD Review – by Bruce Lindsay, All About Jazz

Shiwasu is a strong recording—mainstream, but with added influences that lift it out of the well-worn path. Dean is a musician with some innovative ideas and the ability to make them work, and his tunes on Shiwasu signal the arrival of a worthy new talent.”

“Shiwasu” CD Review – by Chris Spector, Midwest Record

“This cat grew up in music and you can tell how it is infused in his fibers. This bass player is a young jazzbo that can do it all with grace and chops to spare crafting a solid date that burns with a low key fire that doesn’t quit. Lightly left leaning, on the progressive edge of mainstream, this is solid sitting down jazz ensemble work that keeps you in it’s groove throughout. Tasty stuff from a cat you might as well get to know now since you are going to be hearing a lot from him in the future.”

“Shiwasu” CD Review – by Rob Young, Urban Flux Blog

“… by chance if you dig accessible music with layers of compelling intricacies and lingering shapes throughout then I can’t say enough about the music and the remarkable interplay by this fearless quartet. Colin Dean carved rudiments of modern jazz into his voice without feeling indebted to playing traditional jazz. Thanks for doing you … “