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Just as The Jazz Gallery was beginning to host concerts at 290 Hudson Street 20 years ago, another West Village jazz institution was starting up: Jason Lindner’s monday night big band at Smalls. The group featured a host of young players that would make their mark on the New York scene, like bassist Omer Avital, saxophonists Jimmy Greene and Myron Walden, drummers Daniel Freedman and Jeff Ballard, and many more. Along with the work of Maria Schneider and Guillermo Klein, Lindner’s big band pushed the traditional instrumentation into new aesthetic territories, creating the wide-open big band landscape of today.
As part of the Gallery’s 20th Anniversary Celebration, the Jason Lindner Big Band will reconvene for a special weekend residency. In this edition of the Jazz Speaks podcast, Jason tells us the history of the group, from its humble beginnings at Smalls, to the challenges of putting out its first studio album, to its eventual relationship with The Jazz Gallery.
The Jason Lindner Big Band plays The Jazz Gallery on Friday, May 1st, and Saturday, May 2nd, 2015. The group is led by Mr. Lindner on piano and keyboards, and features Omer Avital on bass, Jeff Ballard on drums, John Beatty on alto saxophone, Jacques Schwarz-Bart and Anat Cohen on tenor saxophone, Jorge Continentino on baritone saxophone, Clark Gayton and Joe Fiedler on trombone, Duane Eubanks and Alex Norris on trumpet, and Baba Israel on microphones. Sets are at 8 and 10 p.m. each night. Tickets are $40 for reserved cabaret seating ($30 for members) and $30 general admission ($20 for members) for each set. Purchase tickets here.