jazz!January/February 2009 - Yardbird Suite

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jazz!January/February 2009 - Yardbird Suite

double bill nightKent Sangster andObsessions OctetA special weekend when audiences eachnight get to hear the Kent Sangster Quartet,PLUS the Obsessions Octet! The first set willfeature the Kent Sangster Quartet playingthe music of the legendary Polish film composerand jazz pianist, Krzysztof Komeda(1931-1969). Komeda was one of precursorsof Polish Jazz, a founder of a” Slavic style ofJazz” whose music moved many musiciansas well as helped movie makers to becomefamous. One of his great collaborators andclose friends was Roman Polanski. Komedawrote music scores to few of his movies including“Rosemary’s Baby”, that brought bothto great fame. In total Krzysztof Komedawrote music for about 60 films. His musicis very lyrical, using themes and rhythmsof some Polish folk tunes as well as ChopinEtudes.The second set will feature the ObsessionsOctet debuting new material from theirupcoming CD.Whether leading a quartet, a quintet or anyother group, Kent Sangster always hits thestage with a vibrant energy that challengesand entertains jazz fans to the max. Kent’s CDA Matter of Time (June 2003) has gained ravereviews and regular airplay in Canada and inEurope, and has helped to reinforce his statusas one of Canada’s finest jazz saxophonists.A special project launched by Kent and hiswife, Joanna Ciapka-Sangster, the ObsessionsOctet arrived on the scene in style withtheir first album, OBSESSION, winning high4 January/February 2009


“The virtues we’ve come to associate with Watts include fertile harmonicimagination, a beautiful Trane-soaked-in-wine tone, the blowtorch cry, ripplingcadenzas and the ability to swing at any tempo.” ~ Kirk Silsbee / LA CityBeatthe big bands of Gerald Wilson and Oliver Nelson.It was also with Oliver Nelson that Wattshad the occasion to record with the legendaryThelonious Monk on Monk’s Blues.During the 1970s and ‘80s, Watts was immersedin the busy production scene of LosAngeles. His signature sound was heard oncountless TV shows and movie scores, almostall the early West Coast Motown sessions,and with pop stars such as Aretha Franklinand Steely Dan. Though the pop music genreplaced narrow confines on his performance,the studio sessions allowed Watts the chanceto constantly hone and refine his tone. Afteryears in the studios, Watts’ passion for acousticjazz never left him. At the end of a longday of sessions, he could frequently be heardplaying fiery jazz in late-night clubs aroundLos Angeles.In 1983, he joined Charlie Haden’s LiberationMusic Orchestra, and toured with Pat Metheny’sSpecial Quartet, which also included Haden.Watts’ tour with Metheny’s group in the late1980s found him on a triple bill with Sun Raand the Miles Davis Band -- a turning pointfor the artist. “The serious energy of Pat’s musicconvinced me to make the commitmentto this level of performance. Every night Ialso absorbed Sun Ra and Miles and couldnot deny the power I was feeling in the music.”Watts is also an original member of Haden’scritically-acclaimed Quartet West, withwhom he has toured and recorded for overtwenty years.Watts’ eclectic mix of career activities includescurrent work with vocalist Kurt Ellingin a tribute to Johnny Hartman and John Coltranewith a string quartet. He has taken partin Jazz at the Kennedy Center for Billy Taylor,and recently toured Australia with Billy Cobhamand orchestra. A typical year finds Wattstouring Europe with his own quartet, in Asiaas a featured guest artist and performing atsummer festivals throughout North Americaand Europe, often with Charlie Haden’sQuartet West. He gives back to the musicby conducting student clinics and masterclasses. Watts has also compiled a collectionof orchestral arrangements for guest soloistappearances with symphonies. And there isthe occasional “hometown gig” with the ErnieWatts Quartet in Los Angeles, where heis still based.The joy he found in jazz as a youth, now enrichedby experience, still is his today. Wattssums it up; “I see music as the common bondhaving potential to bring all people togetherin peace and harmony. All things in the physicalworld have vibration; the music I chooseto play is the energy vibration that touches acommon bond in people. I believe that musicis God singing through me, an energy to beused for good.”when...Ernie Watts QuartetFrom Los Angeles/EdmontonFRI-SAT, FEBRUARY 6-7, 2009TICKETS - MEMBERS $20, GUESTS $24DOORS 8 PM - SHOW 9 PMErnie Watts - saxophoneChris Andrew - pianoMike Lent - bassSandro Dominelli - drumsArtist website:www.erniewatts.com9


annualJazzWorks Non-Competitive Band FestivalSupporting jazz education! Organized by theEdmonton Jazz Festival Society, JazzWorksis an annual festival which brings togetherjunior, senior and community big-bands forfriendly competition and learning in a supportive,enthusiastic environment. All the funand education takes place in the heart of OldStrathcona, with events hosted at both theYardbird Suite and the Cosmopolitan MusicSociety (Cosmos). Each venue will play hostto ensembles from across the province asthey participate in a rich variety of clinics andshowcases.Each day is jam-packed with learning opportunities,including extensive 90-minute clinicswith a panel of acclaimed clinicians. Eachclinic is designed to provide the ensembleswith constructive feedback on technique,style and professionalism.Each evening culminates with Showcases atthe Yardbird Suite. These Showcases featureensembles participating in the Band Festivaland provides them with the opportunity topresent their pieces in a concert setting. Aleading educational and performance highlightof the festival will be special shows by theEdmonton Jazz Orchestra (EJO) where participantscan see first hand just what they mayaspire to in the world of professional jazz.when...JazzWorks Non-CompetitiveBand FestivalWEDNESDAY-SATURDAYFEBRUARY 11-14, 2009Website:www.jazzworks.cacontinued from page 3The main idea is for the feature band to setthe direction for the jam session and largelydecide where it goes. The benefits of this willbe better music for the listener and morevariety in the jamming. There would also bemore of an opportunity for younger playersto play with established musicians in a reallifesituation and hopefully a better, moreorganic flow to the night.The goal of the Tuesday Night Session is tocreate a place for Edmonton’s jazz musicians,both established players and those aspiringto do so, to get together on a regular night.Jazz, blues and other creative idioms andthe musicians who make the music, are thelifeblood of the Yardbird Suite. Having aregular time for them to hang out, networkand play together is vital to the overallhealth of the Edmonton jazz scene. HavingEdmonton’s best jazz players regularlyperforming at the Tuesday Night Sessionwill only help to strengthen the existingjazz community and to mentor the youngermusicians who want to be a part of it.These changes to the Tuesday Jam are notbeing made to discourage younger playersfrom participating in the night but to raisethe bar musically, giving young playersthe experience they’ll need to build theirown careers, pushing veteran players to bebetter while also giving the listening publica much better overall jazz experience. Afterall, without an audience, for whom wouldmusicians play except themselves?The Edmonton Jazz Society, the YardbirdSuite and its volunteers hope you enjoy thechanges to the Tuesday Night Session andask you jazz fans to help support it.The Edmonton Jazz Society10 January/February 2009


IN CONCERTat the Yardbird SuiteMARCH1.2009DOORS 7:00JAZZ 7:30TIX $10TheRiver CityBig Band


great vocalistsNorma Winstone TrioJoin friends and fans for a wonderful eveningwith the London-born jazz singer, NormaWinstone!Norma has a lissome voice, agile and expressive,and she’s a fine improviser besides. Althoughshe’s known for her wordless improvisations, sheis also a fine interpreter of lyrics and composedmelody. In 2002, she was awarded the title BestVocalist at the BBC Jazz Awards.The trio’s 2008 ECM release, “Distances”, received4 1/2 stars in Downbeat magazine and hasbeen nominated for a 2009 Grammy Award inthe Best Jazz Vocal Album category.Norma’s artistic path has been long anddistinguished. In the 1960s, she was a pioneerin vocal improvisation, collaborating withmusicians such as Joe Harriott, John Stevensand Mike Westbrook.In the mid 1970s she recorded on the ECMlabel with the group Azimuth, with John Taylorand Kenny Wheeler. The group’s five albums- recorded between 1977 and 1994 - set newstandards in improvised chamber music,opened up a new space between jazz andthe pattern-pulses of minimalism, and alertedthe wider world to the qualities of Winstone’ssinging. Norma also appeared on one ofWheeler’s own recordings, Music for Large andSmall Ensembles.On her own ECM recording, Somewhere CalledHome, Winstone put words to tunes by EgbertoGismonti, Ralph Towner and others; she alsosang standards, in the company of John Taylorand Tony Coe.Beyond her ECM works, Winstone hascollaborated with several American jazz artists,including Jimmy Rowles, Fred Hersch, GaryBurton and Steve Swallow. She has also workedwith UK jazz greats such as Stan Tracey andBobby Wellins.Glauco Venier graduated in organ andcomposition from the Udine Conservatory in1985, then took private lessons with FrancoD’Andrea before heading to Boston’s BerkleeSchool. He has led his own bands since 1990and played with a widecross section of Italian andinternational musicians includingEnrico Rava, Lee Konitz, KennyWheeler, Joey Baron, Paolo Fresuand dozens more.While studying classical music at theDen Hague Conservatory, KlausGesing moonlighted with bandsplaying Bulgarian music, stronglydrawn to that tradition’s use ofodd metres which has become ahallmark of his own writing.“Vocalist Winstone’s new ECM release is a lean and beautiful album - hereffortless and reedy delivery, utterly without vibrato, is marvelously subtle andtransparent. There’s much to treasure on this album by one of the British Jazzscenes most affecting and original vocalists.” ~ Ed Hazell, Jazziz12 January/February 2009


when...In jazz, he won prizes as a tenor sax player beforesetting aside that instrument to concentrateon soprano saxophone and bass clarinet. Asa soprano player he continues to salute thelegacy of John Coltrane. He sounds like noother bass clarinetist, establishing a unique rolefor the instrument in the trio with Winstone,alternating between a real bass function andlyrical, soloistic flights.Norma Winstone TrioFrom England/EuropeFRIDAY, FEBRUARY 20, 2009TICKETS - MEMBERS $22, GUESTS $26DOORS 8 PM - SHOW 9 PMNorma Winstone - vocalsGlauco Venier - pianoKlaus Gesing - bass clarinet, saxophoneArtist website:www.normawinstone.com13


canadian jazz seriesPetr Cancura Quartet’sPeopleMusicYardbird people – meet PeopleMusic! Onthis night you will experience the rawness ofworld music and the energy of the New Yorkjazz scene, as Petr Cancura brings his highlyappraisedquartet from Brooklyn to Edmontonfor the first time.Cancura is a Czech-born, Ottawa-raised andNew York-based saxophonist who gathered atop-notch team of players for his PeopleMusicproject. The project is meant to “capture lifein music” and is a celebration of Brazil, Africa,the Balkans, the old worlds and the fearlessadventure of new music.Each member of the quartet is highlyaccomplished and “in-demand” on the scene.Drummer Greg Ritchie (Francois Bourassa, JohnStetch) lends his uplifting sense of rhythm, GarthStevenson (George Garzone, David Tronzo) playsbass and Chris Bartos (Sarah Harmer) roundsout the group with his haunting melodies andevocative feel.An imaginative and graceful improviser, PetrCancura has established himself as a tour-deforceand one of the finest multi-instrumentalistson the scene today. He is part of the DaniloPerez Big Band, co-leads bands with Joe Morrisand John McNeil, and has recorded and playedwith artists such as Bob Moses, Kenny Wollesenand Kathleen Edwards. He maintains a rigorousinternational touring schedule with manygroups in varied musical situations. Havingrecorded over thirty CDs, PeopleMusic is Petr’sdebut album as a leader, in which he exploreshis outlook on music and life.Since moving from Montreal to New York in2003, drummer Greg Ritchie has performedwith Jean-Christophe Beney, David Binney,Seamus Blake, Vic Juris, Geoffrey Keezer, DaveLiebman and Mark Turner. Ritchie continues towork with many of Montreal’s finest musiciansincluding Christine Jensen and Steve Amiraultbut he is probably best known in Edmontonfor his several appearances here with FrancoisBourass. He also played at the Yardbird Suite lastOctober with John Stetch.Originally from Kelowna, B.C., Garth Stevensonreceived a full scholarship from Berklee Collegeof Music in Boston. He has gone on to playwith such jazz greats as George Garzone, JoeLovano, Bob Moses, David Tronzo, Ben Monder,Mick Goodrick, and Jon Faddis among others.He has performed on David Letterman, CraigFerguson, The CBS Morning Show and recordedlive on Sirius and XM radio. Stevenson regularlytours throughout the United States, Canada,Europe, and Japan. He is a staple in today’s jazzand improvised music scene, and his beautifulmusicality is a huge part of the group.Chris Bartos was born in Ottawa where helearned to play the violin, piano and guitar.A graduate of Boston’s Berklee Collegeof Music, he was awarded the Stephen D.“Petr Cancura is a sax player who’s always been a great player. But in the last yearor two he has just lit himself on fire.” ~ Bill Stunt - CBC Radio14 January/February 2009


Holland Scholarship, and was the featuredguitarist in a special ceremony honoringand awarding guitarist Pat Metheny with hishonorary doctorate. A professional musicianfor over fifteen years, Bartos is also a composer,producer and engineer of film and televisionsoundtracks.when...Petr Cancura Quartet’s PeopleMusicFrom Ottawa/New YorkSATURDAY, FEBRUARY 21, 2009TICKETS - MEMBERS $14, GUESTS $18DOORS 8 PM - SHOW 9 PMPetr Cancura - saxophoneChris Bartos - guitar, violinGarth Stevenson - bassGreg Ritchie - drumsArtist website:www.petrcancura.com15


canadian jazz seriesBrandi DisterheftQuintetHot Canadian jazz for a cold night in February!At the moment, North Vancouver-born andToronto-based Brandi Disterheft is the hottestbassist in Canadian jazz.Her first album, “Debut”, won the 2008 JunoAward for Traditional Jazz Album of the Year, butBrandi has been taking the jazz world by stormfor a few years now, as a bassist and composer.It is not only her swinging bass playing that ismaking people sit up and take notice, but alsoher innovative writing style, using lively grooveswith influences from Mingus to Bjork.Audiences and critics are grooving to Brandi’spowerful compositions and fiery playing.The disc has earned raves from the likes of AllAbout Jazz: “Disterheft’s debut is testimony toa remarkable talent”; The Globe and Mail: “[she]generates the sort of rhythmic confidence thatmakes her whole band swing”; and Eye Weekly:“This rising star is now the centre of her ownsolar system.” The recent JUNO win is surely justone sign of a very bright future.When asked about her premiere disc “Debut”winning the 2008 Juno for Traditional JazzAlbum of the Year, Brandi had this to say:“It was a real thrill! When my name was calledat first I didn’t even go to accept it because Icouldn’t believe that they had called my name.In my acceptance speech I said, ‘Did you knowthat jazz in Canada is THRIVING?’ Because Ireally believe it is. Even around us younger folks,there’s just so much passion here.”16 January/February 2009


Disterheft has other lively comments about thestate of jazz today. “Somewhere along the wayjazz has evolved into an introspective, dinnermusic. But, jazz in its prime day was completelylively and uplifting - it was celebratory partymusic. That’s what I’m trying to bring back! Iwant to show especially the younger generationthat jazz can have a huge back-beat. It’s alwaysa thrill to play jazz music to a packed housewhere the audience is absolutely going crazydancing!”Disterheft began her musical career in her lateteens performing with her mother, jazz pianistFran Jare, and other local Vancouver artists. Sheattended Humber College on full scholarship,studying with Canadian jazz luminary DonThompson for two years. She has also studiedwith such luminaries as bass legends Rufus Reidand the late Niels-Henning Orsted Pederson.As a bandleader, Brandi has led her own groupsince the age of 19, performing in venues acrossCanada. As a “sideman”, she has been a bandmember in groups led by some of Canada’sleading artists, including the Mike MurleyQuartet, the Phil Dwyer Quartet, the RichardUnderhill Quintet, and the Michael KaeshammerTrio, just to name a few.Still in her twenties, Disterheft is one of Canada’srising stars; she was nominated for the CBCGalaxie Rising Star Prize at the 2004 NationalJazz Awards. Along with national recognition forher musical endeavors, she has also performedinternationally in the United States, Japan, Chinaand Europe.“The incredibly gifted Disterheft has all atonce crossed the threshold of first albumsand pushed the horizon much further thanany musician of her vintage. “Debut” is atruly remarkable achievement.”~ Raul d’Gama Rose, Allaboutjazz.comwhen...Brandi Disterheft QuintetFrom TorontoFRIDAY, FEBRUARY 27, 2009TICKETS - MEMBERS $16, GUESTS $20DOORS 8 PM - SHOW 9 PMTerra Hazelton - vocalsChris Gale- tenor saxStacie McGregor - RhodesBrandi Disterheft - acoustic bassSly Juhas - drumsArtist website:www.brandidisterheft.com17


january1 2 34 5 6 7 8 9 1011 12 13 14 15 16 1718 19 20 21 22 23 2425 26 27 28 29 30 31february1 2 3 4 5 6 78 9 10 11 12 13 1415 16 17 18 19 20 2122 23 24 25 26 27 28January 23-24Kent Sangster QuartetObsessions OctetMembers $18, Guests $22Doors 8 pm - Show 9 pmJanuary 27Thom Bennett GroupThom Bennett (drums),Jeff Johnson (bass), Tom King(piano), Mo Lefever (guitar)Members/Guests $4Doors 7:30 pm - Show 8 pmJanuary 30Fernanda CunhaMembers $20, Guests $24Doors 8 pm - Show 9 pmJanuary 31Ted’s Warren CommissionMembers $14, Guests $18Doors 8 pm - Show 9 pmFebruary 3Modo TrioCraig Brenan (trombone),Jeff Johnson (bass), Bill George(drums)Members/Guests $4Doors 7:30 pm - Show 8 pmFebruary 6-7Ernie Watts QuartetMembers $20, Guests $24Doors 8 pm - Show 9 pmFebruary 10Celsius QuartetBill Richards (piano), Jamie Philp(guitar), Pierre Paul Bugeaud (bass),Gord Graber (drums)Members/Guests $4Doors 7:30 pm - Show 8 pmFebruary 11-14Jazzworks Non-CompetitiveBand FestivalFebruary 17The ParkersBob Tildesley (trumpet), KarenPorkka (saxophone), Thom Golub(bass), Kevin Parkinson (drums)Members/Guests $4Doors 7:30 pm - Show 8 pmFebruary 20Norma Winstone TrioMembers $22, Guests $26Doors 8 pm - Show 9 pmFebruary 21Petr Cancura Quartet’sPeopleMusicMembers $14, Guests $18Doors 8 pm - Show 9 pmFebruary 24Kent Sangster QuartetKent Sangster (saxophone), JimHead (guitar), Mike Lent (bass),Jamie Cooper (drums)Members/Guests $4Doors 7:30 pm - Show 8 pmFebruary 27Brandi Disterheft QuintetMembers $16, Guests $20Doors 8 pm - Show 9 pmFebruary 28L’Orkestre des Pas PerdusMembers $16, Guests $20Doors 8 pm - Show 9 pmEDMONTON JAZZ SOCIETY11 TOMMY BANKS WAY(Corner of 102 St & 86 Ave)EDMONTON AB T6E 2M2

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