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

riverside tour

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

GRECD1036_Riverside_cover-opt

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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Riverside on Tour

Posted by: Dave Douglas on April 7, 2014 @ 2:26 pm
Filed under: Riverside

Riverside - Federico Zamarripa Photo 014 copy

Rare dates with Steve Swallow and the Doxas brothers in support of our new release, Riverside! Come say hello in New York, Boston, Quebec City, and Toronto.

Really fun band, really fun record in homage to Jimmy Giuffre.

Riverside: Dave Douglas, Chet Doxas, Steve Swallow, Jim Doxas
TUE 15 APR Jazz Standard / New York, US Buy tickets
WED 16 APR Jazz Standard / New York, US Buy tickets
THU 17 APR Regatta Bar / Boston, US Buy tickets
FRI 18 APR Théâtre Petit Champlain / Quebec City, CA Buy tickets
SAT 19 APR The Rex / Toronto, CA Buy tickets

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Record Store Finds, V1.0

Posted by: admin on July 13, 2009 @ 9:24 am
Filed under: Culture, Listening

I have been wanting to do a post like this for awhile now. Thanks to Ethan @ Do The Math for posting his finds and putting the idea back into my head.

The record store is still a place where I love to hang. Music you don’t usually know playing a little too loud while you dive into the bins trying to find the deal of the century – you know, that original mono pressing of an early Zappa album for $.99. More likely, you’ll be luckier with that at a thrift shop where things like that slip through the cracks. Maybe it’s my love of High Fidelity that keeps me going in. Or maybe it’s just that I’m one of those guys who still loves the feeling you get when you drop the needle or press play on something you’ve never heard.

With everyone saying that retail is dead, I’ve been making a concerted effort to support at least 2 of my 4 favorite Chicago record stores every month – Dusty Groove on Ashland, Permanent Records on Chicago Ave, Reckless Records (all 3 locations), and of course Jazz Record Mart. Not that I continue to grasp at the music industry of the past. I just really dig the time spent there. Records stores are like my saloon, I guess – I spend a little too much time there, and when I get home, sometimes I can’t figure out where all my money went.  And lately, each of these stores have had a lot of people shopping.  Good to see.

Anyway, this past weekend, I went to Permanent and the Reckless on Broadway. My finds are below.

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