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A look inside The Jazz Gallery

Photo courtesy of the artist

Photo courtesy of the artist

On his recent album Portraits  (Sunnyside), drummer Guilhem Flouzat composed a series of pieces inspired by his closest friends and musical compatriots. In an interview with Jazz Speaks, Flouzat described the motivations and challenges of working in this way:

[F]riendships mean a lot to me. My friends are my moral compasses in life. It’s thanks to them that I know who I am, and the same goes musically. I know who I am as a musician thanks to the musicians that I play with and I really trust, so it made perfect sense for me to start writing about these people that inspire me. At first it came naturally, and after a while it became a challenge to go all the way, and form a whole gallery of portraits like the first ones I wrote.

This Tuesday, April 5th, Flouzat returns to The Jazz Gallery, performing both material from Portraits and new songs. Flouzat will be joined by his regular rhythm section partners pianist Can Olgun and bassist Desmond White, as well as two new collaborators—vocalist/guitarist Camila Meza and saxophonist Chris Cheek. Flouzat’s excitement about working with these two top-flight musicians is quite palpable—he’s mentioned that “I might avoid playing ballads for fear of tearing up during a Chris Cheek solo.”

Before coming out to the Gallery on Tuesday, check out some tracks from Portraits below, tunes that are both lyrical and rhythmically boisterous.

Guilhem Flouzat plays The Jazz Gallery on Tuesday, April 5th, 2016. The group features Mr. Flouzat on drums, Camila Meza on guitar and voice, Chris Cheek on saxophone, Can Olgun on piano, and Desmond White on bass. Sets are at 7:30 and 9:30 P.M. $15 general admission (FREE for members) for each set. Purchase tickets here.