Celebrating 10 Years of Greenleaf Music

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Greenleaf Music celebrates its 10th Anniversary in 2015. It seems like only yesterday–much less ten years ago–that Dave Douglas and Mike Friedman founded the company together.

Greenleaf was born of a desire to make and distribute music in a different way, to provide a new platform for Dave’s work as well as for artists he wants to showcase, and to create a community of like-minded fans to discover and enjoy that music. Since 2005 we’re proud to have released over 40 different projects: countless albums from Dave Douglas, as well as artists Kneebody, Donny McCaslin, Michael Bates, Nicole Mitchell, Curtis MacDonald, Linda Oh, Matt Ulery, Rudy Royston, Riverside and Ryan Keberle.

As the year passes, we’ll be focusing on our new projects (from Donny McCaslin on March 31 as well as from Dave’s new band High Risk in the summer and his famed Quintet in the Fall). We’ll also remember the company’s previous releases, especially the first three: Kneebody’s Break Me and Dave Douglas’ Mountain Passages and Keystone. We want to get this music in to your hands, so we’re celebrating with a sale (more on that below).

As a special treat for our loyal subscribers, we’ll also be recording a band of Greenleaf alumni and giving the tracks away as part of our subscription series. Dave, Chet Doxas, Ryan Keberle, Frank Woeste, Linda Oh, and Rudy Royston recorded new originals written by Dave earlier this week. Also, Kneebody is recording a new version of the Shane Endsley tune Break Me in honor of the 10th anniversary of their release. We’ll post the first track soon!

“Greenleaf is a family name that goes back at least four centuries. I wanted the label to have a sense of family, both in the way we treat recordings and in the way we deal with artists. You can sit around and gripe about the music industry ’til you’re blue in the face or you can do it yourself and act on what you believe in.”

-Dave Douglas, 2005

Mountain-PassagesThe first record on Greenleaf Music was Dave’s Mountain Passages, released ten years ago today. The New York Times wrote that it’s “a cross between the energetic Balkan-tinged improvisation heard in Mr. Douglas’s Tiny Bell Trio and the hushed dynamics of another of his bands, Charms of the Night Sky…a provocative groove and vamp, and a style of ensemble playing that’s dynamically hushed but emotionally hot.”

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The ensemble, NOMAD, was formed to play music inspired by the myths and the spirit of rural mountain culture. The instrumentation of trumpet, clarinet, cello, tuba and percussion are envisioned as an imaginary traveling band, and their first performances took place high in the Italian Dolomites as part of the festival I Suoni delle Dolomitti. Partially inspired by his love of world folk music, NOMAD also carries the spirit of jazz that informs all of Dave’s music. Mountain Passages is a profound and playful mix that veers between the solemnity of solitary contemplation and the drunken debauchery of ecstatic celebration. If you haven’t had a chance to check out this work, take the opportunity now!

We’re offering a physical copy of Mountain Passages for $8 and a digital download for $5 at the Greenleaf Music Online Store for 1 week celebrating the 10 year anniversary of its release.

We’re excited to have shared ten years of great music with all of you and look forward to celebrating it all again this year.

Want more music? We feel the same way.

 

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The Big Sale

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THE BIG SALE

For a limited time get 30% off any item from the Greenleaf Music Online Store. That includes CD’sLP’sSheet Music… you get the idea. Just enter coupon code “bigsale” at checkout. Sale ends December 2nd!

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Riverside in Canada in November!

Posted by: russell on October 28, 2014 @ 6:50 pm
Filed under: Events, Riverside

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Riverside, a group inspired by the music of clarinetist Jimmy Giuffre and co-lead by trumpeter Dave Douglas and saxophonist Chet Doxas, will appear twice in Alberta in November. The quartet aims to show their appreciation and respect for the late reedsman and composer, but rather than being just a tribute band and simply performing Giuffre’s repertoire, Douglas and Doxas have composed new music that highlights their inspiration. The piano-less configuration allows for harmonic freedom and gives the group the ability to emphasize the original compositions as well. The band will feature Dave Douglas on trumpet, Chet Doxas on saxophone, Jim Doxas on drums & Joe Grass on pedal steel and guitar. We hope to see you there! See below for details.


November 6, 8:00 pm
Edmonton Jazz Society/Yardbird Suite (tickets)
11 Tommy Banks Way (Corner of 102 Street & 86 Avenue)
Edmonton, Alberta


November 7 , 9:00 pm
JazzYYC Jazz Fest (tickets)
Ironwood Stage and Grill
1229 9th Avenue SE
Calgary, Alberta

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Riverside In Europe Wrap Up

Posted by: russell on July 31, 2014 @ 9:00 am
Filed under: Riverside

We had a wonderful European tour that wrapped late last week and which found us zig zagging our way across the continent, marked with memorable shows and people along the way. The fun didn’t stop there, however. After returning home from these incredible two weeks, it was straight to packing boxes. My wife and I, and our two daughters now call Brooklyn home. We will miss Montreal but are excited for this new chapter to begin.

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Starting off in Bucharest on July 4 was an unforgettable experience. After looking back on the performance and setting, this ended up being one of my favourite shows. This is kind of funny because it was the last show to come in on our summer bookings, literally one week before we left. When we got there, one would’ve thought the show had been planned for a year. Every detail was thought of, the crew and hospitality were great and even the advertising was spot on. Dave and I shook some hands and signed some records and read some great translations on menus. The highlight: Beaten and tormented beef for the pleasure of your taste.


Riverside-europe-02Next, July 5, we were off to beautiful Vigo, Spain. I knew this was going to be a show to remember when our driver from the airport seldom let the speedometer dip below 190 km/h on our two hour trip. It was a pleasantly smooth ride, even with Dave and Steve in hot pursuit. We played in the town square that night where Steve, due to airline malfunction, had to return to an old friend – the 4 stringed Fender Jazz bass. Although Steve would’ve liked to have had his own instrument, a beautiful 5 stringed Citron, it was a welcomed reminder to me that it is, indeed, the player and not the instrument that makes the music. Steve played great and it was fun to hear him on a different bass. A bit of Duck Dunn and Carol Kaye in there.


On July 6 we made our way to Marigliano, Italy (close to Naples). The name of the game was finding Steve’s bass. Everything worked out and when we arrived back at the venue, after eating the best pizza I’ve ever had, Steve’s mainsqueeze was waiting for him on the bandstand. Another concert in the town square on a beautiful night, hard to beat!

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Riverside-europe-03July 7 took us to Geneva. We were supposed to play in city hall square but the weather decided for us. We ended up being pleasantly surprised by our indoor alternative, Victoria Hall. It was great to be playing in a concert hall after four outdoor venues in a row andthis show was recorded for radio broadcast for a later date. Look out.

 

 

 


Riverside-europe-04The next night, July 8, was our first night off and Riverside was a bit banged up.  Lots of flights and little sleep, the band was ready for a reset. Thanks to a restaurant recommendation from fellow horn player, Ohad Talmor, we made our way to a nice little Italian restaurant and kicked back. Dave’s treat! Thanks again chef d’orchestre.


Riverside-europe-05July 9 is when things got really interesting. We flew into Timisoara, Romania, and then had a 3 hr van ride straight up hill to home base, Garana. The roads are one and half lanes wide and two ways. Close calls seem common place here, as our driver didn’t seem too concerned with near head-on collisions. An exciting ride, to say the least. A day off in the woods at the Gasthof Tirol lodge was a definite change of scenery and vibe. Our generous host, Andrea and her family, took us swimming, kept fed and watered, and kept us safe from the roaming dogs! No joke, there were dogs everywhere. Semi-domesticated/semi-wild, the dogs snack on ankles and bike tires.


Riverside-europe-06On July 10 we did what we were brought to Garana to do. Another 25 mins into the mountains and we arrived at the stage. It was a really cool venue. The seating is provided by hundreds of giant tree trunks in multiple rows. People use these as benches and I gather that the venue is used year-round for a variety of shows. It was a fun show. I remember Dave coaxing his tune Backyard into rhythm changes for his solo section and tearing it up! It’s not often that you get to hear Dave play bebop but man, you can really hear his love and appreciation of the music and the language that has been such a big part of this music. Another highlight was getting to hang with and hear the saxophonist, Andy Sheppard. His playing has always knocked me out and his trio played a beautiful set that night. He’s a great player and composer, and continues to be an inspiration to me.


We left Timi Soara, complete with another death-defying car ride, and flew to Rotterdam on July 11. Another family dinner, care of Dave (thanks again!) was a great way to end an epic travel day.

On July 12 we played at the North Sea Jazz Festival. The North Sea fest is wall to wall music. It takes place in a giant conference center so all the concert go-er has to do is walk across the hall to hear another act. We played in the Hudson room after Tineke Postma who’s band included Greg Osby, Matt Mitchell, Linda Oh and Dan Weiss. It was really nice to see some familiar faces, have some laughs, a glass of wine,and toss around some Tim and Eric quotes. Also, Danilo Perez’s trio played after us and they played beautifully. John Patitucci played mostly electric bass and Brian Blade was his, usual, brilliant self. To open the show and to recognize the passing of Charlie Haden we played his composition, Silence.

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Riverside-europe-07July 13 had us going back to Spain to El Puerto de Santa Maria. Yup, the same as the boat. Sergio, our main man in Spain, took us to a wonderful spot for lunch where he did the ordering and we happily did the eating.

This was the day of the world cup final so after some long afternoon naps, we met to watch the game and eat dinner. After the first overtime half we made our way down the street to Osborne wines and played a wonderful show. Considering that it was an outdoor venue, the sound was remarkable. Steve played an amazing acappella solo on an old hymn that Dave brought in called Arbacoochee. Hard to ask for more in a night than that!


July 14 is when we lost Steve but gained a wonderful musician named Andy Clausen. We flew into Venice and from there drove into the Dolomites, arriving in time for a late dinner. A great meal with local wines.


Riverside-europe-09On July 15 after a most of the day to walk around the charming mountain town of Cavalese, with rehearsed with Andy. Andy is a very gifted trombone player who memorized the entire repertoire, very creatively covered the role of the bass, and soloed amazingly well. After rehearsal in the room that the hotel provided, which gave us panoramic views of the surrounding mountains, we headed down to the restaurant dinner and more local treats. We got hang with Anna, a new member of the team at Saudades.

We had a great meal then we hit the local mini-putt course for a high stakes game of after dinner fun, capped off with gelato.


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On July 16, we headed up the mountain. We were met by the mountain guides who were there to carry of gear up to the venue. Strong lads with good vibes! This was Dave’s fifteenth year of playing in the Suoni della Dolomiti. After one gondola, two chairlifts and a one hour hike we made it to the magical venue. Dave chose the spot and as you can see, it had it all. During the set we changed positions to play from various vantage points. This help create different vibes for different and let us connect on different ways with the crowd.


July 17 we all headed our separate ways home thankful or the experience of getting to share Riverside with new audiences in new places and charged up for the next outing.

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Listen to and Buy Riverside here!

Thanks to all of you who picked up our recording Riverside. Great to meet so many listeners out there, thank you for your continued support. We look forward to the next time!

july 16 stairs july 16 trail the battle of Garana July 10

 

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Praise for “Riverside”

Posted by: admin on May 19, 2014 @ 7:00 am
Filed under: Riverside

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The reviews are in! Critics love “Riverside,” the collaboration between co-leaders Dave Douglas and Chet Doxas featuring Steve Swallow and Jim Doxas. Grab your copy today!

“..a sturdily approachable new jazz quartet…this is a band that could easily keep going for a while without running out of options.”
Nate Chinen, New York Times

“Riverside injects some toe-tapping, feel-good soul and brotherly hoots and hollers into the music.”
Ken Micallef, DownBeat

“A great jazz disc predicated on one of the most heartening jazz revivals in many years.”
Jeff Simon, Buffalo News

“The deceptive simplicity of folk-based themes, rich harmonic counterpoint and subtle rhythmic interplay are the basic foundations of Giuffre’s aesthetic—aspects Riverside makes its own on this vibrant premiere.”
Troy Collins, All About Jazz

“…a great collection of compositions album that is free in spirit and feeling.”
Paul Acquaro, Free Jazz Blog

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Chet Doxas

Posted by: admin on May 15, 2014 @ 9:00 am
Filed under: Riverside, store

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Riverside Co-Leader Dave Douglas on Jimmy Giuffre

Posted by: admin on April 28, 2014 @ 10:58 am
Filed under: Riverside

In honor of the new Riverside album, co-leader Dave Douglas reflects on his favorite Jimmy Giuffre arrangements and compositions. Dave Douglas and Chet Doxas formed the new collaborative project honoring the musical legacy of composer, bandleader, saxophonist and clarinetist Jimmy Giuffre. “Riverside” is out now!

“The Swamp People”
Effortless flow of rhythm and melody. And such an unusual yet natural sounding tune! I can’t listen to these tracks without wondering how much of the arrangement was arranged and how much improvised on the spot. I feel it is mostly improvised because the call and response is ready and willing.

“The Lonely Time”
Really unique guitar work from Jim Hall. Such a mournful piece and yet uplifting from the clarion sound of Brookmeyer.

“California Here I Come”
Again with the effortless flow. They must have loved California. Or something.

“Show Me The Way To Go Home”
Indeed.

“Ictus”
Composition by Carla Bley that epitomizes so much of her brilliant early writing. The trio played a lot of her tunes, and if you’re not familiar with her early work, the quintets on Fontana with Steve Lacy are also an extraordinary place to start.

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Co-Leader Chet Doxas on Riverside

Posted by: admin on April 21, 2014 @ 3:32 pm
Filed under: Riverside

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Wow! What a way to spend a week. We had a great time out on the road celebrating the release week of Riverside, performing in New York, Boston, Quebec City and Toronto. Getting to see and hear how the music changes from night to night and venue to venue is always the most exciting part for me. Since much of the music features free improvised sections (especially Dave’s tunes), the vibe can be so different night to night. We also noticed how much a venue can play into this, and specifically, the sound on stage.

As for playing with these incredible musicians, the energy was something that never lacked. I’m pretty sure that Dave is part superhero. During the many talks I had with Steve, we talked about how sometimes you forget how hard an instrument like the trumpet can be because Dave plays it so well and with unparalleled energy, focus and communication. You really get the feeling that there’s no barrier between what he can think up and then execute. Steve and Jimmy provided a wonderful combination of support and adventurism to every tune we played. Steve is such a master of playing in the setting of “one foot in, one foot out” that when you play you feel like you can just hop for the ride and take the wheel for a while. Jimmy also loved to play this way and a lot the music sets up well for this type of playing. He played his butt off every night!

Another talk I had with Steve was about that awesome feeling after the gig when you’re so elated but can’t remember a single thing that you played. We agreed that it probably means that you never tried to force anything or make that conscious decision to tell yourself “now I’m going to play this cool thing that I practiced all week.”

On April 14 and 15th we had the pleasure of welcoming Andy Clausen to the Jazz Standard on the trombone as a special guest. Andy is an outstanding young trombonist who also works at Greenleaf Music. I am looking forward to the next time I get to play with Andy. He will be playing the role of the bass but covered on trombone July 16 with Riverside in the Dolomites in Italy.

All in all, it was a heck of a way to spend a week–filled with great times on and off the band stand, pleasantly smooth travel days and good meals. I can’t wait to get back out for the summer festival season.

See you out there,
Chet

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Riverside Released

Posted by: Dave Douglas on April 15, 2014 @ 7:00 am
Filed under: Dave Douglas, Riverside

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Happy to finally be able to share this recording! Riverside is the culmination of a long relationship with Chet Doxas, who I first met at The Banff Centre years ago. After a long study of the music of Jimmy Giuffre, Chet approached me about doing this project four or five years ago. At that time, I had already written about a dozen tunes thinking of the way the Jimmy Giuffre 3 played. Chet and I both approached the legacy of Giuffre’s music differently, and when we brought this music together, with Chet’s brother Jim on drums, and the legendary bassist Steve Swallow (who had a long musical relationship with Giuffre) on electric, there seemed to be a deep rapport that only intensified over the course of some gigs a couple years back. The record was made live in the studio with great engineer Steve Bellamy in the newly refurbished studios at Humber College in Toronto.

Now Greenleaf Music is proud to host the official release of this recording and put forth live shows this week in NYC, Cambridge, Quebec, and Toronto. There will be more performances this summer.

My compositions for this group are really about interplay with simple elements of melody, harmony and form. It is a pleasure to share the stage with these three giant musicians, and Riverside is a recording I am very proud of.

 

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Riverside Co-Leader Chet Doxas on Jimmy Giuffre

Posted by: admin on April 14, 2014 @ 7:06 pm
Filed under: Riverside

In honor of the new Riverside album, co-leader Chet Doxas reflects on his favorite Jimmy Giuffre arrangements and compositions. Dave Douglas and Doxas formed the new collaborative project honoring the musical legacy of composer, bandleader, saxophonist and clarinetist Jimmy Giuffre. Riverside is out tomorrow!

“The Boy Next Door”
I always enjoy hearing Mr. Giuffre’s command and respect for the great songs that came before him. As an obvious lover of original melodies, I like to think that he especially enjoyed playing this one. Also, I believe that he chose carefully when deciding what standards he and his group were going to perform. This performance is from 1960 at Paris’ Olympia Theatre.

“Ictus”
This is one of several compositions by Carla Bley that Giuffre’s trio recorded in 1961. I love how timeless this piece and its performance is. I feel like this style of improvising is still so relevant today. Thanks to the brilliance of Paul Bley and Steve Swallow, the freshness hasn’t worn off.  Yet another great tune from Carla Bley, go figure!

“Mack the Knife”
Along with Jim Hall and Ray Brown, Jimmy Giuffre makes this special arrangement of Kurt Weill’s “Mack the Knife,” a real treat. The feel is so good that I never want the tune to end, and all of the written unison passages make me think of another one of Giuffre’s associates, the trombonist and arranger, Bob Brookmeyer.

“Western Suite 2 mvt, Apaches”
Similar to the first song on this playlist, I included this piece to highlight another one of Jimmy Giuffre’s compositional languages. His love of American folk melodies and his unique writing and arranging for his early trio of Jim Hall and Bob Brookmeyer. This style is a contribution to instrumental music that I think should be cherished.

“Jesus Maria”
Another composition by Carla Bley, this beautiful melody is still like nothing I’ve ever heard before. It’s such an original melody and the improvised solo section is something to take note of–amazing listening and contributions to enhancing the mood of the piece.

“The Train and the River”
Probably the most popular of Jimmy Giuffre’s western swing tunes, “The Train and the River” is a blast to play. We recorded it on Riverside. In fact, I think it was at the top of the list of Jimmy Giuffre tunes we wanted to take a stab at. Great playing from Mr. Giuffre on this track.

“The Song is You”
Another track from Lee Konitz meets Jimmy Giuffre, this one highlights Giuffre’s arranging talents. The band is quite a collection of all-stars including Bill Evans on piano and Warne Marsh on tenor saxophone. Giuffre is playing baritone saxophone on this cut. Again, listen for the unison writing, specifically the trombone and baritone saxophone. It makes me think of Bob Brookmeyer’s arranging and how much he favoured that sound.

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