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Decorating Time

by James Gilmore

  • Compact Disc (CD) + Digital Album

    With CD Jacket Design by Andrew Duke, album design concept by James Gilmore and Andrew Duke, CD cover art: ‘Out to Pasture’ by Jenna Schwartz (beadwork), cover photo by Harrison Haynes, band photos by Daniel White.

    Includes unlimited streaming of Decorating Time via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
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  • Streaming + Download

    Includes high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more. Paying supporters also get unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app.
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Ding, Dong 05:59
The Drip 06:04
Stairs I 02:13
Stairs II 00:47


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James Gilmore - guitar & compositions
Butler Knowles - bass
Kassem Williams - drums

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"I have a basic mechanical knowledge of the operation of the instrument, and I got an imagination, and when the time comes up in the song to play... it's me against the laws of's a game, where you have a piece of time and you get to decorate it." - Frank Zappa

“Decorating Time speaks in what feels like a new language, or at least a new dialect […] Consider the tantalizing earworms that abound on this album […] The syntax of his original compositions is simple but alluring, elusive without need of genus identification […] Gilmore [wields] a tantalizing but clean approach to harmony, pulsed by Knowles and shimmered by Williams’ cymbal work […] secured by the delightfully audible like-mindedness of the trio […]The session ends as provocatively as it began, with a track that at first sounds a sad distant trade whistle […] followed by plaintive chords which some of us, smiling in surprise, will make out as Willie Nelson’s pop crossover country classic “Crazy,” written in the late 1950s and indelibly recorded by Patsy Cline in 1961. With Decorating Time‘s only non-original, Gilmore respectfully puts the old love song on giddy shimmering sedatives, with Williams blissing out beyond time, in the spirit of Sunny Murray. Nelson would probably be grinning, while the rest of us wonder where the engagingly idiosyncratic Gilmore will be taking us next.” “****” –Jeff Kallis / All About Jazz

“Accustomed to avant garde releases from Ears and Eyes Records, I expected to hear something similar in this case. But I was mistaken. Gilmore’s music, even if it can’t be reduced to isms, would be on the minimalism side, like an instrument directed towards a post-bop foundation. Gilmore plays very simply without the embellishments that many guitarists have abused when demonstrating their technique. Matthew Golombiski, who provided us with the link to Gilmore’s work, compares his performance to Jim Hall and Kurt Rosenwinkel: very flattering comparisons! And the themes Gilmore prefers are simple—sometimes very simple—but they are used to build an improvisation for the entire trio. I must point out that the musicians demonstrate a perfect mutual understanding; they hear each other well, and Gilmore, in turn, leaves enough space for his partners to “decorate” their own patterns in Decorating Time […] The album is very friendly to the listener; anybody can easily enter into Gilmore’s music and surely feel cozy in it.” – Leonid Auskern / Jazz Quadrant (trans by Michelle Slater and Dmitri Sinenko)

“An album rich in its vision and executed with avant-garde moments and plenty of innovative jazz exploration, Gilmore, Knowles, and Williams possess a rare chemistry, and the energy that spawns from it is infectious.” –Take Effect Reviews


released September 10, 2021

All the songs are original compositions except for Gilmore and co’s re-imagining of Willie Nelson’s ‘Crazy’.

Recorded and Mixed by Kris Hilbert at Legitimate Business, Greensboro, NC
Mastered by Mell Dettmer at Studio Soli, Seattle WA
CD Jacket Design by Andrew Duke
Album design concept by James Gilmore and Andrew Duke
CD cover art: ‘Out to Pasture’ by Jenna Schwartz (beadwork)
Cover photo by Harrison Haynes
Interior Photos by Daniel White


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James Gilmore Greensboro, North Carolina

noise, improvisations, the blues

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