Loading page... Wait Bar Animation
TobinMueller.com Mobile Menu Close Button Mobile Menu Button
Home Bio Recordings Music Videos Photography Writings Illustrations Contact
Rain Bather • Jazz Album
Cover of Rain Bather
Rain Bather
available on CDBaby, iTunes, and Amazon

Jump to: The EnsembleTrack List

Combining outstanding players in a variety of settings, RAIN BATHER captures fabulous performances on this extra long play CD. A breadth of styles find play within these totally hip arrangements of Tobin Mueller's innovative compositions.

Trouble with the CDBaby player? Click here to reload.

Many of these tunes are jazz renditions of songs from Tobin's Broadway show Creature (based on Frankenstein). The instensity of storytelling remains active in the arrangements, as well as the singable lyricism of each intertwining melody. These recordings transcend the original songs, however, living and breathing as completely unique jazz performances. As Dr. Frankenstein would say, this music breathes... "I'ts alive!"

One of the freshest and most sheerly entertaining, intriguing and exciting recordings I've come across, Tobin Mueller's Rain Bather is the product of its composer's kaleidoscopic mind. Primarily utilizing jazz arrangements of songs written for Mueller's Broadway play, Creature -- itself based on Frankenstein -- Rain Bather's compositions range from progressive big band to funk, fusion to world music to classical to straight ahead jazz. This cascade of styles could be wearisome, but not in the hands of this sensitive composer, who moves the listener assuredly through the paces... Highly recommended."

RAIN BATHER moves adroitly between contemporary jazz, progressive big band, fusion, acid and funk. Three tracks (1, 2, 4) employ a progressive octet; two tracks use a septet (8, 10). The rest of the tracks build on a core quartet of organ, piano, drums and bass, adding in one or two extras voices (sax, trumpet, flute, clarinet and/or violin), forging an ever-changing variety of colors and tones. (Tracks 1, 2, 11, 12 have received FM airplay.)

As front man to a fluid ensemble (see below), Tobin's progressive rock organ (AUDIOCRACY) fits perfectly into these jazz settings, providing sagacious accompaniment and melodic direction, but never dominating. Tobin's nephew, Chris, provides elegant acoustic piano accompaniments with plenty of space for memorable solos by the horn players.

The jazz styles wander among contemporary, progressive, big band, fusion, acid, and funk, giving the collection a lively, upbeat feel. Mueller here plays organ, synthesizer, and electric piano with his usual eloquence, leaving the acoustic piano to his nephew Chris Mueller. Woody Mankowski provides a driving saxophone solo in The Cliff’s Edge, Dane Richeson drums vibrantly in Finding No Path, and Sal Giorgianni’s flute enlivens Seven Buttons on a Nehru Jacket. The combination of acoustic and electric instruments adds to the variety, energy, and sheer delight of the album. The sound has a vibrant club-like ambiance, and the extended play (nearly 80 minutes) is an added bonus."

There are so many great moments on this 80 minute extended play CD, but a shout out has to go to Woody Mankowski's astounding soprano sax solo in Cliff's Edge, his multi-sax layering in Windowshade; Dane Richeson for his drum solo on Finding No Path; the retro-acid tripping flute Sal Giorgianni plays in Seven Buttons On A Nehru Jacket; and the old school clarinet stylings of Bill Barner in Secret Of Life. Carl Fischer's trumpet solos in Acid Hopping absolutely grooves, employing a whole collection of mutes and plungers. Martyn Kember-Smith's celtic fiddle provides a happy change of pace in Caught In The Current. (Several of these players also appear on Tobin's solo album A BIT OF LIGHT and subsequent jazz recordings THE MULLER'S WHEEL and COME IN FUNKY.)

Although most of the album is up tempo, two mellow ballads include breathtaking sax solos: River Runs Through Me (Woody Mankowski on soprano) and Waltzing Night Into Day (Doug Schneider on tenor). The interplay between piano and organ in Must Go Back also deserves a special mention. Through it all, Dane Richeson's percussion permeates and exults; his years studying everywhere from Paris to the Sudan come into play.

Rain Bather is yet another demonstration of Tobin Mueller’s multi-faceted artistry. For a vibrant musical experience overflowing with life and attitude, check it out!"
- Kathy Parsons, Mainly Piano

This ensemble never treads water, never back pedals. Everything is full forward. A truly entertaining and inventive collection of tunes. This is music with a fresh spin, played by a band that communicates, that creates musical conversations (not just stand-alone solos). Listeners of the following artists will love it: Brecker Brothers, Ed Palermo Big Band (especially renditions of Frank Zappa's stuff), The Muffins, Stockholm Jazz Orchestra, Chic Corea, Herbie Hancock, John Schofield, and Medeski Martin & Wood.

The Ensemble

Tobin Mueller - B3 organ, electric piano, composer
Chris Mueller - acoustic piano
Jeff Cox - acoustic bass
Dane Richeson - drums & percussion
Woody Mankowski - soprano saxophone
Tom Washatka - tenor saxophone
Doug Schneider - tenor sax
Ken Schaphorst - flugelhorn
Bob Levy - trumpet
Sal Giorgianni - flute
Bill Barner - clarinet, additional sax
McBoy - electric guitars

All songs by Tobin Mueller.
©2008-2009 Tobin Mueller.

Although it is the current rage to purchase music as downloads, the packaging of this CD is particularly pleasing. The disc resembles an old 45 record, complete with vinyl and grooves. The fade-to-scratches on the final track (mimicking a 78 RPM) aids this illusion. Worth purchasing just to be able to hold in your hands. Available at CDBaby.

Track List
1.
I Wanna Fly (2:20) *†
Tobin Mueller - B3 organ; Chris Mueller - acoustic piano; Jeff Cox - acoustic bass; Dane Richeson - drums; Woody Mankowski - sop sax; Tom Washatka - tenor sax; Ken Schaphorst - flugelhorn; Bob Levy - trumpet
2.
Cliff’s Edge (7:34) *†
Tobin Mueller - B3 organ; Chris Mueller - acoustic piano; Jeff Cox - acoustic bass; Dane Richeson - drums; Woody Mankowski - sop sax; Doug Schneider - tenor sax; Ken Schaphorst - flugelhorn; Bob Levy - trumpet
3.
Must Go Back (6:46) *†
Tobin Mueller - B3 organ; Chris Mueller - acoustic piano; Jeff Cox - acoustic bass; Dane Richeson - drums
4.
Lightning Strikes (3:49) *†
Tobin Mueller - B3 organ; Chris Mueller - acoustic piano; Chuck Ledvina - acoustic bass; Dane Richeson - drums; Woody Mankowski - sop sax; Josh VandeHey - tenor sax; Ken Schaphorst - flugelhorn; Bob Levy - trumpet
5.
Caught In The Current (4:43) *†
Tobin Mueller - B3 organ; Chris Mueller - acoustic piano; Jeff Cox - acoustic bass; Dane Richeson - percussion; Martyn Kember-Smith - violin; Bill Barner - clarinet
6.
Windowshade (8:23) **
Tobin Mueller - B3 organ, synths, electric piano, drum programming; Woody Mankowski - soprano & tenor saxes
7.
Secret Of Life (4:47) *†
Tobin Mueller - B3 organ; Chris Mueller - acoustic piano; Jeff Cox - acoustic bass; Dane Richeson - drums; Bill Barner - clarinet
8.
Seven Buttons On A Nehru Jacket (4:43) ***
Tobin Mueller - B3 organ, synths, electric piano; Joel Rosenblatt - drums; Butch Taylor - electric bass; McBoy - electric guitar; Sal Giorgianni - flute
9.
Waltzing Night Into Day (7:48) *†
Tobin Mueller - B3 organ; Chris Mueller - acoustic piano; Jeff Cox - acoustic bass; Dane Richeson - drums; Doug Schneider - tenor sax
10.
Acid Hopping (6:24) ***
Tobin Mueller - B3 organ, synths, electric piano; Joel Rosenblatt - drums; Richie Hart - electric guitar; Butch Taylor - electric bass; Sal Giorgianni - flute & tenor sax; Carl Fischer - trumpet
11.
Finding No Path (8:37) *†
Tobin Mueller - B3 organ; Chris Mueller - acoustic piano; Jeff Cox - acoustic bass; Dane Richeson - drums
12.
River Runs Through Me (6:57) *†
Tobin Mueller - B3 organ; Chris Mueller - acoustic piano; Woody Mankowski - soprano sax
13.
Last Song On Vaudeville (5:48) ***
Tobin Mueller - B3 organ, synths, drum programming; Bill Barner - clarinet & tenor saxes

* Recorded at Lawrence University, Larry Darling engineer
** Recorded ar Saxe Studios, Scott Saxe engineer
*** Recorded at ArtsForge Studios (Tobin Mueller)
Mastered by Audio Magic Recording Studios

† based on music from "Creature," an Off-Broadway musical by Tobin Mueller
©1998 Tobin Mueller

Tobin's Jazz Collection
Come In Funky cover
Come In Funky Old School Funk and and small combo Jazz featuring legendary bassist Ron Carter. This eclectic blend of Jazz and Funk is the second collaboration between keyboardist Tobin Mueller and saxophonist Woody Mankowski. Half of these tunes will transport you back in time to when most everything (music, clothes, language) owed its hipness to the Funk wing of 1970s jazz. The other half resonate with intimacy, playfulness and humor. A delight. For more information, see: Come In Funky Project page. Released May 4 2014, in honor of Ron Carter's 77th birthday.

"You guys can play! These are, almost without exception, very complicated numbers in terms of rhythm and the general sync of solos with ensemble playing, a stellar set of recordings that, I believe, adds seriously to the body of jazz that this represents... A remarkable work in every single way I can think of. This is such a bright and happy album that is played with a spirit of invention and joy from the first notes to the last." - Paul Page
The Muller's Wheel cover
The Muller's Wheel is a collaborative project combining the talents of pianist Tobin Mueller and saxophonist Woody Mankowski, featuring their jazz quartet and larger ensemble. These original tracks represent their personal journey through jazz influences -- from swing to bop to fusion to funk. The styles of Count Basie, Charlie Parker, Lester Young, Herbie Hancock, The Brecker Brothers, Weather Report and more influence this homage to the jazz greats. Even the blues are given Mueller/Mankowski's uniquely bop-funk treatment. In all, the duo's originality permeate each track, each jazz sub-genre.

This is joyous music. It reminds us of the happiness we relive when returning to our musical roots. Mueller/Mankowski remind us how the personalities of certain eras continue to assert their influence and power.

"The Muller’s Wheel" title is based on the biological concept that mutation and DNA recombination creates cycles of growth and loss. It serves as a metaphor for the ebb and flow of the synthesis and creativity Mueller and Mankowski apply to their musical influences. The tracks are arranged in historical sequence, and the listener appreciates the cross-pollination between each of these genres. Listening from beginning to end creates a cyclical pilgrimage. It's rhythms and inventive flights of fancy invite the listener along for many return trips.
Rain Bather cover
Rain Bather is a jazz ensemble 80 minute long play CD. It features superlative solo performances byan all-star band members. Most of the tunes are in the jazz-funk-fusion vein, but many others try to break new ground, defying easy labels.

Tobin Mueller - B3 organ, electric piano, synth; composer
Woody Mankowski - soprano saxophone
Chris Mueller - acoustic piano
Jeff Cox - acoustic bass
Dane Richeson - drums & percussion
Tom Washatka - tenor saxophone
Doug Schnieder - tenor sax
Ken Schaphorst - flugelhorn
Bob Levy - trumpet
Sal Giorgianni - flute
Bill Barner - clarinet, additional sax
McBoy - electric guitars

Tobin's Other CD Collections
Tobin's Solo Piano Collection
Of Two Minds cover
Of Two Minds: The Music of Frédéric Chopin and Tobin Mueller is the final addition to Mueller's "Masterworks Trilogy" in which he explores the intersections of classical and jazz piano. Mueller reinterprets Chopin's most iconic piano solos (Disc 1) and uses the preludes to inspire three original jazz piano sonatas (Disc 2). Seductive, rebellious, heroic and beautiful, Mueller embraces Romanticism at its core, creating music that's distinctly personal and deeply poetic. Jazz, Blues, New Age and Romantic, Mueller weaves all strands of music into a single fabric. Achieved Fanfare Magazine's 2016 Editor's Choice Award.
Flow cover
Flow: The Music of J.S. Bach and Tobin Mueller is a double album featuring Mueller's reinterpretations of Bach's greatest hits (Disc 1) plus two original jazz piano suites by Mueller (Disc 2). Inventive, playful, joyous, beautiful, full of emotion and intelligence. Mueller embraces the sense of timelessness one achieves when in the state of flow, bridging the centuries, letting Bach's 300 year old manuscripts inspire through new expression. Modal Jazz, New Age, Neo-Classical and Baroque all combined in seamless synergy. Achieved Fanfare Magazine's 2015 Editor's Choice Award. Flow is second album of "The Masterworks Trilogy".
Impressions of Water and Light cover
Impressions of Water & Light is an exploration of the cross-inspirations between Impressionist and jazz piano, including adaptations of music by Debussy, Ravel, Fauré, Satie, Ibert and Carpenter. Tobin uses the written notes as if they are light and his imagination as if it is water, creating all new interpretations. This post-Impressionist music illustrates the intimacy between jazz and Impressionist music. You will never hear these works the same again. The gorgeous CD booklet is a work of art in itself, pairing an Impressionist painting with each piece. Impressions is second album of "The Masterworks Trilogy".
Impressions of Water and Light cover
Midwinter Born is a collection of jazz piano interpretations of traditional Christmas carols. Mueller captures the quiet simplicity, expectant playfulness and over-riding joy of the season. A delightful and sometimes surprising album destined to become one of your annual holiday favorites. The wonder of Christmas unfolds as Mueller takes you on a yuletide journey through his musical imagination. The 18 track album includes: First Noel, Bring A Torch Jeanette Isabella, Hark the Herald Angels Sing, O Holy Night, God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen, Carol of the Bells, Lo How A Rose E'er Bloom, Good King Wenceslas, Still, Still, Still and many more.
Morning Whispers cover
Morning Whispers is Tobin's first solo piano collection, a song cycle of tragic beauty. Music of healing and introspection, these New Age and Neo-Classical pieces do more than evoke emotion: they tell stories. The use of key changes, unusual time signatures, and other variational devices makes this work involving, not merely New Age background music. Its gentle intensity, however, does not detract from its healing essence, its sense of inner joy. Influences include Frederic Chopin, Claude Debussy, Aaron Copland, Keith Jarrett, Chick Corea, Bill Evans, David Lanz, Liz Story. Several of these piano pieces have since been used in film and documentaries.
13 Masks cover
13 Masks is Tobin's second solo piano collection. This project evolved from discussions about the role the subconscious plays in creativity. It is also an exploration of the links between avant-garde 20th Century music and jazz. Tobin used his illustrations of 13 Masks to inspire songs combining ragtime, jazz and 20th Century avant-garde classical. He let his subconscious lead the way, creating phrases and variations that pleased something deep inside, often avoiding normal forms and variations. Influences include Thelonious Monk, Dave Brubeck, Art Tatum, Scott Joplin, John Medeski, as well as classical composers Shostakovich, Ligeti, Bartok. These pieces will startle and delight. An eclectic mix of original of songs.
Afterwords cover
Afterwords - Combining spoken word and solo piano, Tobin "illustrates" his favorite works of literature with a wide variety of new musical compositions. Paying homage to classic authors like Hemmingway, Steinbeck, Vonnegut and Faulkner, as well as contemporary authors such as Dave Eggers, Chuck Palahniuk, Aimee Bender and China Miéville, Mueller spins musical stories that will make you consider each author in a new light. Every track is a musical meditation, guided by inspiring and insightful quotations recited and underscored by Mueller. Taken as a whole, the album becomes a personal memoir of Mueller's life journey. The 18 tracks combine to represent the true breadth of his musical influences and accumulated experiences.
Tobin's Rock Collection
Progressive Rock
Audiocracy cover
AUDIOCRACY is an international progressive rock collective. Their poetic writing and virtuosic performances make their high energy music life-affirming and uplifting, even considering the apocalyptic nature of their first release. Revolution's Son has been called "a masterpiece in the Epic Prog tradition." Progressive Magazine gave it 4 out 5 stars. Th story follows a revolutionary who comes to The City to be a catalyst for change and a prophet of truth. He falls into an Underground that urges a less innocent approach to change, leading to a post-apocalyptic finish. High energy, impressionistic prog.
Alternative Rock
A Bit of Light cover
A Bit of Light - A progressive folk / cross-genre collection of songs Tobin's been accumulating for a decade, A Bit of Light includes some of his favorite collaborations with saxophonists, fiddle players and guitarists, mixing jazz, bluegrass, tango and folk-rock. World renown violinist Entcho Todorov, Grammy winner saxophonist Danny McCaslin and L.A.'s Woody Mankowski, Enlish fiddler player Martyn Kember-Smith and guitarist John Luper provide fabulous highlights. The CD comes with a digital booklet in PDF format.
If I Live Long Enough cover
If I Could Live Long Enough - Previously unreleased outtakes from earlier projects, including the 1998-1999 Rain Bather sessions, the 2004-2006 MacJams collaborations, and selected songs from two of Mueller's musicals: Creature and Runners In A Dream. Featuring acoustic guitar by Grammy winner Michael Hedges, vocals by Woody Mankowski and Emily Rohm, and some of Mueller's best songwriting. Six free Bonus Tracks available here.
September 11 Project
September 11 Project cover
September 11 Project: Ten Years Later - Music written following 9/11/2001. Tobin was asked to participate in the 10th anniversary at Ground Zero ceremony and revisted these songs. He decided to put them out as an album instead of keep them to myself. Since he was unable to sing at the event, after contracting a lung disorder, this music gained layers of poignancy. Recorded in the months following the tragedy.
Tobin's Standards Collection
Song Of Myself cover
Song Of Myself - Tobin's favorite songs from The American Songbook, reinterpretted. Intimate, heartfelt, devistatingly honest music. Complete lyrics and song notes are linked from Tobin's Song of Myself page. Ballads, blues, showtunes, folk rock, jazz - the music of Tobin's roots. These are songs he's song for decades, arrangements that have evolved and matured with him.

"American Tune" by Paul Simon. "Blackbird" by Paul McCartney. Bob Dylan's "Dignity." A Joni Mitchell and an Elton John medly. "Being Alive" from Company (Stephen Sondheim). "Impossible Dream" from Man of la Mancha. "Oh Danny Boy." "Frozen Man" by James Taylor. Many more, plus two original songs by Tobin Mueller.
Hard Place To Find cover
Hard Place To Find - Tobin has released a second volume of his favorite songs from The American Songbook. Complete lyrics and song notes are linked from Tobin's Hard Place To Find project page. "Still Crazy" by Paul Simon. Bob Dylan's "Shelter from the Storm" and "Bob Dylan's Dream." Richie Haven's "Paradise." "Dulcinea" from Man of la Mancha. "Alfie" by Bacharach. "Somewhere" from West Side Story. Many more, plus one original song by Tobin Mueller. All songs have to do with journeying, questing, searching. Released June 2nd, 2013.

"Tobin Mueller is something of a Renaissance man of the arts, and 'Hard Place To Find' presents another volume in his prolific and impressive output. More of an art-music album than a pop release, I recommend it if you are looking for something different and deeply personal!" - Kathy Parsons, Mainly Piano
A Bit of Light cover
A Bit of Light - A progressive folk / cross-genre collection of songs featuring Mueller's vocals and a long list of his best friends and collaborators, including world renown violinist Entcho Todorov, Grammy winner saxophonist Danny McCaslin, L.A. saxophonist Woody Mankowski, English fiddler player Martyn Kember-Smith and Texan guitarist John Luper provide fabulous highlights. The music melds jazz, bluegrass, tango and folk-rock. The CD comes with a digital booklet in PDF format.
If I Live Long Enough cover
If I Could Live Long Enough - Previously unreleased outtakes from earlier projects, including the 1998-1999 Rain Bather sessions, the 2004-2006 MacJams collaborations, and selected songs from two of Mueller's musicals - Creature and Runners In A Dream. Featuring acoustic guitar by Grammy winner Michael Hedges, vocals by Woody Mankowski and Emily Rohm, and some of Mueller's best songwriting. 6 free Bonus Tracks available here.
September 11 Project cover
September 11 Project: Ten Years Later - Music written following 9/11/2001. Tobin was asked to participate in the 10th anniversary at Ground Zero ceremony and revisted these songs. He decided to put them out as an album instead of keep them to myself. Since he was unable to sing at the event, after contracting a lung disorder, this music gained layers of poignancy. Recorded in the months following the tragedy.
Poetry / Spoken Word
As Simple As Soap cover
As Simple As Soap - Del lends his deep voice and unique personality to Tobin's award-winning poetry. Love, fatherhood, history, death and daily meanings are all touch on in this combination of poetry and short story offerings. Each spoken word selection is accompanied by Mueller's visually stimulating background music that adds great emotional depth. The force and color of Del's voice earns this collection a high recommendation; the breathtaking and varied accompaniments make this a truly fascinating addition to Tobin Mueller's collected works.
Afterwords cover
Afterwords - Combining spoken word and solo piano, Tobin "illustrates" his favorite works of literature with a wide variety of new musical compositions. Paying homage to classic authors like Hemmingway, Steinbeck, Vonnegut and Faulkner, as well as contemporary authors such as Dave Eggers, Chuck Palahniuk, Aimee Bender and China Miéville, Mueller spins musical stories that will make you consider each author in a new light. Every track is a musical meditation, guided by inspiring and insightful quotations recited and underscored by Mueller. Taken as a whole, the album becomes a personal memoir of Mueller's life journey. The 18 tracks combine to represent the true breadth of his musical influences and accumulated experiences.