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Posts from the Listen Category

Photo courtesy of the artist.

In a recent interview with Jazz Speaks, saxophonist Jure Pukl spoke about his notion of risk in improvised music:

Riskiness can be an open form, or taking a certain structure then opening it up, or getting inspired from a structure and then opening it up into a newer, broader thing, maybe returning the structure. Or, having only structure, trying to be creative and risking only within that structure, so that the players move with the same mission. Fish don’t always move in the same direction, but they outline the bigger shape. Some turn left a little early, some turn left afterwards, it’s all this one moving shape.

Saxophonist Darius Jones is an equally-committed risk-taker, always experimenting with new forms, instrumental configurations, and even made-up languages. At The Jazz Gallery this Thursday, June 28, Jones and Pukl will convene their collaborative quintet Meat—featuring pianist John Escreet, bassist Carlo DeRosa, and drummer Eric McPherson—for two sets of musical surprises. Before checking out the distinctive interplay of Pukl and Jones live, take a listen to their kaleidoscopic version of Ornette Coleman’s “Intersong,” below:

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Photo courtesy of the artist.

This weekend, The Jazz Gallery is pleased to welcome drummer Eric Harland and his Explorations project to our stage for four sets of performances. While still one of the top-call sidemen out there, working with everyone from Walter Smith III to Charles Lloyd, Harland has become increasingly busy with different projects as a leader or co-leader. This year has marked the release of two new singles by Harland’s new collaborative project Stem Sounds, alongside keyboardist James Francies and producer Josh Giunta. The result is a heady blend of Harland’s slippery grooves and rich atmospherics from Francies and Giunta. Check the most recent single, “Stars,” featuring vocalist Chris Turner, below.

For the Explorations project at the Gallery, Harland will be joined by Turner on vocals, as well as saxophonist Chris Potter and guitarist Gilad Hekselman. Alongside musicians of inimitable technique and aesthetic range, one can only imagine the places this band will go at the Gallery this weekend. (more…)

Album art courtesy of Sunnyside Records.

Quarteria, the new record from saxophonist Román Filiú, takes its name from cuartería, the public housing projects in Filiú’s hometown of Santiago de Cuba. Inspired by the neighborhood’s cacophony of diverse sounds and musics, Filiú composed an eclectic suite of music, drawing from his diverse training in jazz, classical, and folkloric idioms. Originally composed as part of The Jazz Gallery’s 2014 Commission Series, Quarteria comes out on Sunnyside Records this Friday, May 11.

That evening, the Gallery is pleased to welcome Filiú and his band back to our stage to celebrate the album’s release. The group will feature several players from the album, including tenor saxophonist Maria Grand, drummer Craig Weinrib, and percussionist Yusnier Sanchez. Before coming out to join the record release party, check out the first two tracks of the album—”Fulcanelli,” named for mysterious French alchemist, and “Grass,” inspired by the compositional practices of Olivier Messiaen—below.

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Photo by Anne-Claire Rohe.

This Thursday, May 10, The Jazz Gallery is pleased to continue our series of Thursday night shows at the Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning in Queens with a solo set by pianist Sam Harris. Juxtaposing a sense of haunting lyricism with striking harmonic angularities, Harris has become one of the most sought-after collaborator in New York, working with the likes of Ambrose Akinmusire, Melissa Aldana, and Ben van Gelder, to name a few. As a consummate accompanist, Harris has had relatively few opportunities to stretch out in a solo format, which makes this concert a rare treat. Before heading out to Queens for the show, check out Harris’s shape-shifting solo from Ambrose Akinmusire’s 2017 live record, A Rift in Decorum (Blue Note).

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Photo by Bart Babinski, courtesy of the artist.

This Friday, The Jazz Gallery is pleased to welcome pianist Aaron Parks back to our stage with a new quintet lineup. While Parks is well-known for his exquisite lyricism, he is always looking to cast his sound into new contexts, whether with his rock-oriented group Little/Big, or his probing trio with bassist Ben Street and drummer Billy Hart, who released Find the Way on ECM Records last year.

Parks has also been invested in playing with and mentoring the newest crop of talent emerging on the New York scene. In an interview with JazzTimes last fall, Parks rattled off the names of those he’s been checking out and playing with: “Immanuel Wilkins, the alto player; [saxophonist] Maria Grand as well. Daryl Johns, the bass player—Daryl’s scary, man! How’s he so good? Micah Thomas is scary good on the piano. And so is James Francies, who’s my roommate. And I just love Joel [Ross], as everyone does, and as everyone will come to once they know him. The young generation right now, man! It’s kicking my ass. I’m loving it.”

For his Gallery show, Parks has assembled a quintet featuring some of these young players—Joel Ross and Maria Grand—alongside top-call veterans John Hébert on bass and Kendrick Scott on drums. Don’t miss this exciting band put their distinctive spin on Parks’s original compositions. (more…)