Phoenix Rising Cover

“[Hatfield’s] inventive use of intricate chordal arpeggios combined with single-note lines in both his comping and soloing has developed into an instantly recognizable technique.  Hatfield’s solos, like his compositions, are elegant, polished, and always energetic and absorbing, as demonstrated on “Iberia,” one of Phoenix Rising’s many highlights.”

–excerpt, Ron Forbes-Roberts review of Phoenix Rising in Acoustic Guitar, February 2003


“The set offers a representative cross section of his talents, which include writing for solo guitar. . . , a knack for Latin rhythms and moods . . . , and the ability to swing and even get downright funky. . . .  Recommended for those with an affinity for the subtle and sublime.”

–excerpt, Jim Ferguson review of Phoenix Rising in JazzTimes, January/February 2003


“Hatfield demonstrates remarkable consistency in his solos and outstanding musicianship throughout the album. . . .  He’s an intense player who builds his solos with aplomb. . . .  If you’re not familiar with Ken Hatfield’s distinguished playing and tasteful musical compositions, this album, Phoenix Rising, is a great place to start.”

–excerpt, Winthrop Bedford review of Phoenix Rising in Jazz Improv magazine, Vol. 4 no. 1





“Hatfield explores Brazilian-drenched motifs as an adjunct to a succession of jazzy grooves and melodically tinged overtures.  The guitarist’s nimble touch sparks notions of the late Charlie Byrd as he demonstrates poise and an upbeat demeanor throughout this cordial affair.”

–excerpt, Glenn Astarita review of Phoenix Rising in Down Beat, “Strings & Things,” March 2003


“This CD is a great combination of classical, Latin and, of course, that great jazz Ken is known for.  All compositions are originals by Ken, with great arrangements and meticulous recording. . . .  This project is one of his best, if not his best recording to date. . . .  A must-have for 2003.”

–excerpt, Charles Chapman review of Phoenix Rising in Just Jazz Guitar, February 2003


“Nylon string guitarist Hatfield has conceived a compelling mix of jazz and Brazilian flavored originals for this outing. . . .  One of the strengths of Hatfield’s writing is in how he effectively molds the aggregate voices into a single, beautifully sculpted musical statement.”

–excerpt, Jim Fisch review of Phoenix Rising in 20th Century Guitar Magazine, “The Jazz Box,” May 2003


“. . . Hatfield’s technically prodigious yet soft-spoken fingerstyle work. . . continues to defy norms in the jazz guitar field.”

–excerpt, David Adler review of Phoenix Rising in All About Jazz, January 2003


“Ken Hatfield has a real flair for jazz phrasing on the nylon string and none of the clichés many nylon string guitarists use when playing jazz.  Combine this with a superb sound from his Buscarino Cabaret classical guitar and you have a very satisfying album.”

–excerpt, Ian Macgregor review of Phoenix Rising in Jazz Guitar Society of Western Australia News Letter, #79, December 2002


“Ken Hatfield wields his eloquent and supple classical guitar on his latest jazz offering, Phoenix Rising. . . .  A top notch classical/jazz guitar outing by Hatfield.”

–excerpt, Dan McClenaghan review of Phoenix Rising @


“. . . Hatfield is nothing if not versatile. . . .  the clarity of Hatfield’s articulation and the acuity of his musical imagination remain consistent throughout. . . .  Always exploring new forms, even as he remains true to his inspirations, Ken Hatfield has recorded a technically impressive and instantly enjoyable CD that, in some respects, is his most elaborate yet.”

–excerpt, Don Williamson review of Phoenix Rising @


“The fourth release from this prodigiously talented guitarist and composer finds him dividing his time between straight-ahead jazz compositions and pieces written in various Brazilian styles.  None is less than lovely, and several are astoundingly beautiful. . . .  All in all, this is an endlessly delightful album.”

–excerpt, Rick Anderson review of Phoenix Rising @


“Hatfield and sidemen luxuriate quite comfortably in bop and blues. . . , mainstream cool . . . , and contemporary chamber jazz. . . .  Hatfield wrote and arranged all ten tracks on this CD, as prolific a composer as he is an able and passionate performer.  Ken Hatfield’s music may be classic jazz at its core, but even better. . . it’s all sincerely gussied up with a fresh new face on it.”

–excerpt, Alan Fark review of Phoenix Rising