Archive for October, 2017

COMPOSER/MULTI-INSTRUMENTALIST TYSHAWN SOREY – RECIPIENT OF 2017 MACARTHUR FOUNDATION FELLOWSHIP

Thursday, October 19th, 2017
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We are proud to announce that our management client Tyshawn Sorey is a 2017 recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship for “assimilating and transforming ideas from a broad spectrum of musical idioms and defying distinctions between genres, composition, and improvisation in a singular expression of contemporary music.” In their statement, the MacArthur Foundation also praised his “refined sense of restraint and balance that allows him to maintain his own unique voice while bringing a vast array of musical settings to life.”

Sorey is among 24 other esteemed 2017 MacArthur Fellows, who span a range of disciplines including visual art, human rights and social justice, theater, writing, history and more. The MacArthur Fellowship, often known as the “Genius Grant”, distributes a no-strings-attached $625,000, distributed over five years, to these select individuals. In an interview with National Public Radio, Sorey said: “I’ve been recognized for doing something that I truly have believed in, and worked on for the past 20-odd years. It’s a blessing.” Sorey joins many of his immediate musical colleagues, regular collaborators and mentors who have been awarded the MacArthur in previous years – Anthony Braxton, John Zorn, George Lewis, Steve Coleman, Vijay Iyer and Jason Moran (with whom he’ll play Thelonious Monk duets with at Duke University this month.)

The news of the MacArthur fellowship comes amidst an already historic year for Sorey. In September, Sorey began a new faculty appointment as Assistant Professor of Music at Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut; released the stunning and widely praised Verisimilitude on Pi Recordings this August; and toured widely. Sorey had notable premieres of his compositions at the Ojai Music Festival, in performance with the International Contemporary Ensemble, hisDouble Trio, and led musicians through his conduction language which he’s dubbed “Autoschediasms.”

For the fifth consecutive year, Sorey taught at the Banff International Workshop in Jazz & Creative Music – for the first time in the program led by Claire Chase/Steven Schick, and the fifth time in the program led by 2012 MacArthur Fellow Vijay Iyer.

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TAYLOR HASKINS & GREEN EMPIRE RELEASE THE POINT, A RADICAL DEPARTURE FEATURING ANALOG EVI (electronic valve instrument), PEDAL STEEL, ACOUSTIC GUITAR, BASS AND DRUMS

Thursday, October 19th, 2017

Based deep in New York’s northern Adirondack mountains, Haskins leads superb Vermont musicians in a boundlessly lyrical sonic adventure; 
Green Empire not just a band, but trumpeter/composer Haskins’ notion of an “imagined utopia” where environmental priorities prevail

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Describing it as “the most experimental project I’ve done, despite its sweet and melodic sound,” versatile trumpeter/composer and New Hampshire native Taylor Haskins premieres his unorthodox new quintet Green Empire on The Point [Street Date, Label Info TK].

Featuring Haskins exclusively on the rare Steiner/Crumar analog EVI (electronic valve instrument), with Brett Lanier on pedal steel, Michael Chorney on acoustic guitar, Robinson Morse on bass and Geza Carr on drums, Green Empire reveals a magical, almost folkish electro-acoustic sound world — totally unlike Haskin’s jazz-electronica project Gnosis from earlier this year, but just as bold in its way.

“These are musicians that live in Vermont, across the lake from me,” Haskins says. “I’ve been living deep in the Adirondacks near Lake Champlain for over seven years and have developed friendships with these gents. It’s really a band: it’s not ‘just a gig’ to anyone involved, it’s something that happens when we all come together. The guys were working as a unit before I met them, in Michael Chorney’s band Hollar General. I basically pilfered the band because I loved the sound so much.”

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There’s a pronounced environmentalist theme to the album and the band in general: Green Empire is Haskins’ imagined ideal of a society guided by wisdom in matters relating to nature, energy production, medicine and food. “It’s a lone flying paper lantern that contains a sincere wish for the future,” Haskins says of The Point. “I see the album as a longing for this utopia, a longing for an eternal spring.”

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Saxophonist & Multi-Instrumentalist DANNY JANKLOW Releases Stunning Full-Length Debut, ELEVATION, Co-Produced by Pianist John Beasley

Thursday, October 19th, 2017

Album Features Janklow’s Mentors and Peers:
Pianists Eric Reed and John Beasley,

Keyboardist Sam Barsh, Vibraphonist Nick Mancini, Bassists Ben Williams and Benjamin Shepherd,
And Drummer Jonathan Pinson

Featuring Guest Vocal Spots by Jesse Palter on “Hidden Treasure” and “Lolobai”
And Michael Mayo on Catchy Album Closer “Serene State of Love”

“When one considers the outstanding young jazz musicians in Los Angeles who are most likely to move the music forward, alto saxophonist Danny Janklow is in the front of the pack.”– Los Angeles Times

“Danny Janklow is one of the most amazing talents I’ve witnessed. His dedication and commitment to this music makes his music swing, groove and touch the hearts and souls of his listeners. Danny combines his harmonic prowess with his love for melody, rhythm and the blues to create passionate, energetic solos with depth and soulfulness!” – Terell Stafford

“Danny has proven to be one of the most reliable musicians with whom I’ve ever had the pleasure of sharing a bandstand. Regardless of the concept, tempo, key or time signature, he consistently applies himself to the moment, and handles his business. A remarkable musician.”
– Eric Reed

Saxophonist and multi-instrumentalist, educator & composer Danny Janklow has emerged as a leading voice of his generation on the alto saxophone. His blistering sixteenth note runs and distinct tone and intensity place him among the vanguard of young alto saxophonists including Will Vinson, Loren Stillman, Greg Ward, Braxton Cook and Ben Van Gelder. Indeed his most important mentor, alto saxophonist Dick Oatts, known for his work with the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra and as a longtime educator, confirms this fact, “Danny is a superb alto saxophonist. He is one of the best of his generation. He has a great sound and will keep moving the alto forward conceptually for many years to come.”

Unlike many modern alto players, who rely heavily on a post-Coltrane sound, one can hear a range of influences including classic West Coast jazz (think Lee, Paul, Gerry) plus a strong funk vibe (think Maceo and Sanborn). Additionally Janklow absorbed Johnny Hodges, Charlie Parker, Cannonball Adderley, Sonny Stitt, Eric Dolphy, Kenny Garrett and Zenón. These elements collide and converge to make his full-length debut as a leader, Elevation, something to behold.

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VINNIE SPERRAZZA APOCRYPHAL Release 2nd Album on Loyal Label, HIDE YE IDOLS, October 27, 2017

Thursday, October 19th, 2017

Featuring
LOREN STILLMAN (alto saxophone), BRANDON SEABROOK (guitar), EIVIND OPSVIK (doublebass)

Hide Ye Idols album cover

Drummer and composer Vinnie Sperrazza – building on the success of of his 2014 release Apocryphal and this spring’s Juxtaposition – presents Hide Ye Idols, his strongest artistic statement to date, released on Loyal Label on Oct 27.

Featuring the same cast from Apocryphal (Loyal Label, 2015) – alto saxophonist Loren Stillman (Paul Motian, Tyshawn Sorey), guitarist Brandon Seabrook (Seabrook Power Plant, Gerald Cleaver), bassist Eivind Opsvik (Dave Binney, Tony Malaby) and producer Geoff Kraly (one half of indie rising stars Paris Monster) – Hide Ye Idols is by turns cinematic, aggressive, melodic, irreverent, joyous, introspective, and underpinned by a dry, generous humor.

The album was recorded at Acoustic Recording, mixed by Opsvik, and mastered by drummer and bassist Nate Wood (Donny McCaslin, Kneebody). Drawing inspiration from a swath of sources as varied as Sun Ra, SquarepusherDavid Lynch’s Eraserhead soundtrackTerry GilliamVictorian literature, and trips to the Brooklyn Public Library’s History section, the music’s post-rock textures, improvisation, and electronic explorations all point in a wholly contemporary direction.

Speaking of the band, Sperrazza says, “after the first record Apocryphal, I booked as many shows as I could, and consequently had subs on gigs sometimes. It was then that I realized, and we all realized, that this is a band.  So we’re Vinnie Sperrazza Apocryphal now, and while I loved working with so many different musicians and am honored that many great players – Ben Monder, Matt Pavolka, Charlotte Greve – have helped us do shows, I recognize now that this is our vocabulary, our approach; it’s a group sound, not a sound that can be broken down into ‘this player with that player equals this music’”.

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Frank Perowsky Jazz Orchestra’s An Afternoon in Gowanus, with Never-Before-Recorded Compositions and Arrangements Out October 27, 2017 on Jazzkey Records

Thursday, October 19th, 2017

Album Features All-Star Big Band Section Players Jerry Dodgion and Sam Burtis,
Alongside Rising Stars John Ellis, Jacob Garchik, Loren Stillman and Seneca Black
Produced by Drummer & Son, Ben Perowsky

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The Frank Perowsky Jazz Orchestra is a 16-piece ensemble with the finest and most sought after instrumentalists in NYC. The musicians are legendary in their own right, including Jerry Dodgion & Sam Burtis who have been working alongside Perowsky for more than forty years in bands such as Thad Jones/Mel Lewis Orchestra, Woody Herman’s Thundering Herd and Chico O’Farrill’s Afro Cuban Jazz Orchestra. This ensemble spans generations, bringing a unique mixture of personalities, expressions and excitement to their sound.

Upon graduating from The Juilliard School as a clarinet major in 1958, Frank began his career in the big bands of Jimmy Dorsey, Les and Larry Elgart. He performed and/or recorded with Tito Rodriguez, Johnny Richards, Bill Watrous, Billy Taylor, Roland Hanna, Peggy Lee, Sarah Vaughan, Billy Eckstine, Nancy Wilson, Frank Sinatra, Mel Torme, Michel Legrand, Stan Getz and Liza Minnelli. His arrangement of Bud Powell’s composition “Bouncin’ With Bud” was recorded by Buddy Rich on the “Class Of ‘78” album. Roland Hanna recorded Frank’s “Samba De La Noce” and Bill Watrous recorded Frank’s arrangement of Victor Young’s “My Foolish Heart.”

“My dad will turn 83 this coming November”, says Ben “and we’ve never had the chance to document his fantastic big band arrangements. I decided to produce and play drums on this first recording.”

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Dave Douglas LITTLE GIANT STILL LIFE with The Westerlies and Anwar Marshall

Thursday, October 19th, 2017

Twelve brand new Dave Douglas compositions and arrangements for five brass players and drums.
A broad range of vibrations and strategies

Inspired By Politically Engaged Visual Artist Stuart Davis,
Music Written During 2016 Presidential Campaign Season

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Little Giant Still Life is an exciting new meeting between the acclaimed emerging talents of The Westerlies–known for their work with Fleet Foxes, their repertoire of original compositions, and interpretations of the music of Wayne Horvitz –and the young Philadelphia-based drummer Anwar Marshall (Fresh Cut Orchestra, Kurt Rosenwinkel), all under the compositional vision of Dave Douglas. The music contained herein is grooving, swinging, lyrical, and something distinct in Douglas’ over 50 recordings as a leader of original music, and as director of Greenleaf Music.

Much of the music on Little Giant Still Life was inspired by the American painter Stuart Davis, and the music explodes with the same bright colors and excitement that characterize much of Davis’s works. Elaborating on the influence, Douglas quips: “I like the explosive nature of Davis’ work — bright colors, big shapes, images bouncing off each other. Also, the fact that jazz inspired so much of his own work was meaningful for me. Swing Landscape is a good example of Davis refracting what he is hearing in the music for visual use. It’s only natural for musicians to see the work and refract right back!”

While Davis’ mark is heavily felt throughout the album, Douglas’ fledgling relationship with his collaborators are of equal weight. Douglas met The Westerlies – trumpeters Riley Mulherkar and Zubin Hensler, trombonists Willem de Koch and Andy Clausen – at a Chamber Music America event a few years ago. The five of them first played together when The Westerlies opened for Douglas’ quintet at Seattle’s Earshot Jazz Festival. The band sat in on the tune “Barbara Allen” and realized that a more serious collaboration was bound to happen. Mulherkar reflects: “Dave started writing tune after tune for us and him to play together, and when we finally got together again everything came together pretty quickly.”

With the addition of Marshall, the ensemble was complete. Douglas notes, “The Westerlies are dream players for a composer. They really get inside the music and internalize it. They are also great ensemble improvisers — that is, their tendency is to solo all together, rather than one by one. I love that about them. Anwar has a deep groove and real feel for the big landscape of the music; he understands peaks and valleys, and plays with superb empathy. It has made him the perfect player for this project.”

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MIKE REED’S FLESH AND BONE OUT TODAY ON 482 MUSIC

Thursday, October 19th, 2017

Album reflects on the drummer and impresario’s experience being trapped with a mixed race band in a Neo-Nazi rally 
in Prevov, Czech Republic in 2009

Look out for a forthcoming Jazz Night in America from NPR Music coming this Fall featuring Reed’s Flesh & Bone ensemble playing at Chicago’s Constellation

Advance Critical Praise From
The New York Times, The Chicago Tribune,
Chicago Magazine, Chicago Reader, AllAboutJazz,
SomethingElse Reviews, 
and more 

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Flesh & Bone represents the culmination of a journey drummer, composer, and bandleader Mike Reed never wanted to embark on, but delivered into the midst of a racially charged rally and subsequent riot in Prerov. Czech Republic he found himself with no choice. While on tour in tour with his quartet People, Places and Things in April of 2009 a conductor instructed the band that a scheduling change required them to change trains in order to make it to their final destination, Krakow. The group soon realized the conductor was less interested in helping them out than in dropping them into a very frightening situation. Skinheads surrounded the train station and the rally exploded into a street battle with attack dogs, tear gas, riot police and the band: two white and two black American musicians. Thanks to protection provided by local authorities, the musicians finally escaped harm and left for Poland. The ordeal occupied eight harrowing hours and illustrated a new iteration of racism rippling through Eastern Europe. It took years for Reed to fully process the experience, which haunted him.

 

“If I had an experience like that and didn’t create something out of it, I don’t think I would consider myself a true artist,” says Reed. “Going into the process I had no idea of what the point was, I just knew I needed to express something.” Eventually the composer conceived of a new project with the members of People, Places and Things—bassist Jason Roebke and saxophonists Tim Haldeman and Greg Ward—joined by two additional stalwarts from the Chicago improvised music scene: bass clarinetist Jason Stein and trumpeter Ben Lamar Gay. In September of 2015 the musicians traveled to New Orleans and holed up a rented apartment to develop the new pieces Reed has composed, working out arrangements and ideas during the day, and taking in the sounds and sights of the town by night. “We had the luxury of spending days working on the material in one of the most important cities for music,” explains Reed.

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