To the Ute Indians, Dotsero means "something unique." To the residents of a small historic town in the Colorado mountains, Dotsero is home. For jazz enthusiasts, Dotsero means one of the hottest contemporary jazz ensembles on today’s music scene. Combining jazz, pop, R&B and rock, the veteran contemporary jazz outfit creates a catchy, appealing sound and style completely their own.
The soulful tracks on their newest CD, Jumping Through Hoops (Ichiban International Records label), are co-written and co-produced by the three core members -- Stephen Watts (saxophones/wind synthesizers), David Watts (Guitars), along with longtime cohorts Tom Capek and Kip Kuepper. This CD is expected to be in stores in September of 1998.
Dotsero first broke onto the national music scene with its 1990 release Off the Beaten Path. They followed with the critically acclaimed, and chart-topping Jubilee in 1991. Dotsero enjoyed widespread national airplay with Jubilee, as the release spent five weeks at No. 1 on the Radio and Records charts, was No.1 on the Gavin Report’s Adult Alternative chart and spent 10 weeks on the Billboard Contemporary Jazz chart. In 1994, Dotsero released Out of Hand, the long-awaited follow-up to Jubilee. In addition to cracking the Top 10 on Gavin’s A2 Adult Alternative chart and the top 25 on the Radio and Records charts, Out of Hand received rare reviews from a variety of jazz critics and radio programmers across the nation. Dotsero's fourth release ,Essensual, proved to be even more successful than its predecessors.
The Dotsero sound is strong blend of rock, fusion, light funk, soulful melodies and wild improvisation that allows the band to move into a number of musical veins. Often featuring the tenor and soprano sax stylings of Stephen Watts, Dotsero has nailed a groove that has been labeled "hummable" by many and enjoyed by all. The group’s music reflects the styles and tastes of each of the three leaders. Stephen and David all approach their music from different perspectives. It is their ability to blend two distinctly different styles into one powerful sound that has moved them into the forefront of the contemporary jazz world.
Art Good, legendary jazz critic and producer of the nationally syndicated Jazz Trax says, "They are inspired on several different levels -- I’ve long liked their diverse abilities to be soulful or let loose and really juice it up."
On stage, Dotsero lives up to the "something unique" name taken from the Ute Indians. Reviewers from coast to coast have praised their tight, high energy, "never look back" shows. Over the years, the band has performed with a number of leading jazz acts, including Dave Grusin, Lee Ritenour, David Sanborn, Wynton Marsalis, David Benoit, the Yellowjackets, Joe Sample, Richard Elliott, Nancy Wilson, Tom Grant, Hugh Masakela, and Acoustic Alchemy.
"We always try to draw the audience in with fun," says Stephen Watts. "We strive for a performance that is visually enjoyable. From a personality standpoint, we want people to think, ‘These are guys we’d like to have a beer with.’’ The roots of Dotsero can be traced back to a garage band in Denver, Colorado. Performing together was nothing more than a whim to the Watts brothers when they were attending the University of Colorado. From the jam session in the garage, the band moved to gigs in local music rooms.
In a Los Angeles Times feature on the band, Bill Kohlhaase wrote, "Whatever the origins of its name, Dotsero, has carved out something unique of its own -- a sound that combines accessible rhythms, hummable melodies and cut-loose improvisations that fit perfectly."
While there are many things from which Dotsero can, and does draw, one thing remains certain -- You have to admit that the Ute Indians were right. Dotsero is something truly unique.