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A look inside The Jazz Gallery

Photos courtesy of the artists.

Photos courtesy of the artists.

Over the next several weeks, The Jazz Gallery is proud to present the final edition of our 2016 Mentoring Series. Following on the heels of successful runs by pianist Aaron Parks & vibraphonist Joel Ross, as well as guitarist Miles Okazaki & pianist Paul Cornish, this edition will feature two multi-reedists—Dayna Stephens mentoring Patrick Bartley.

It isn’t a stretch to call Stephens the hardest-working musician in the New York jazz scene. He always seems to be running several projects simultaneously, to the point that he rarely plays with the same band twice. His last album, Peace (Sunnyside), featured Stephens reinvigorating classic jazz ballads with a truly top-flight band—pianist Brad Mehldau, guitarist Julian Lage, bassist Larry Grenadier, and drummer Eric Harland. The group has another record’s worth of material in the can—high octane compositions by Stephens and his peers (new standards if you will)—which is highly-anticipated. Recently, Stephens has seriously exploring the capabilities of the EWI in a working group with guitarist Gilad Hekselman and drummer Adam Arruda. Check out the group playing live at Smalls, below:

While most young jazz musicians today would profess to be into a wide variety of music, Patrick Bartley takes that commitment to musical omnivorism to a new level. Just this past month, Bartley released the debut album of his collaborative ensemble J-Music, a group of his peers from the Manhattan School of Music that explores Japanese pop music through improvisation. In addition, Bartley led a group that performed the music of Bix Beiderbecke and Frankie Trumbauer at the NYC Hot Jazz Festival. This past summer, he toured with Wynton Marsalis and the Young Stars of Jazz, showing how effortlessly Bartley can navigate varied styles and musical sub-communities in New York. And like Stephens, Bartley has taken to the EWI, even performing on it with Jon Batiste & Stay Human on the Late Show with Stephen Colbert.

Over the course of four concerts, Stephens will mentor Bartley by exploring the possibilities afforded by different woodwind instruments, from saxophone to clarinet to EWI. They’ll play a number of compositions by Stephens, as well as some of Bartley’s, and like in Stephens’s own groups, will work with a rotating cast of top-notch rhythm section players, including bassist Ben Street and drummer Johnathan Blake. The pair will kick off their series at SEEDS in Brooklyn this Thursday evening, followed by performances at Shapeshifter Lab on November 16th, the Jazz Museum in Harlem on November 21st, and The Jazz Gallery on December 15th. In addition, Bartley will present two sets of his own music for sextet at the Gallery on November 10th.

The Jazz Gallery Mentoring Series featuring Dayna Stephens and Patrick Bartley kicks off on Thursday, November 3rd, at SEEDS (617 Vanderbilt Ave, Brooklyn, NY). Bartley and Stephens will be joined by Gadi Lehavi on piano, Ben Street on bass, and Johnathan Blake on drums. One set at 9 P.M. $10 general admission.