Expansions: The Dave Liebman Group/WCS

Expansions: The Dave Liebman Group/WCS

Expansions: The Dave Liebman Group

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PhotosEXPANSIONS LIVE cover, Booklet photo by Aaron Winters
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Review by J Hunter

 

Review by Phil Freeman

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Acoustic tracks #1,2,7 recorded at Poncho Concert Hall, Cornish College, Seattle, Washington by Alek Edmonds produced by Earshot Jazz Festival – Oct 30 2014All other acoustic tracks recorded at Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild, Pittsburgh, PA by Jay Dudt – October 24 2015

Electric tracks all recorded at the Red Clay Theater, Duluth, Georgia by Sholom Aberle – April 21, 2016

Mixed by Matt Vashlishan

Produced by Matt Vashlishan and Dave Liebman

Executive producer: Neal Weiss

Publishing credits:

Bobby Avey: Avey Dell Music, BMI

Dave Liebman: Liebstone Music, BMI

Cover photos: Matt Vashlishan

Inside pictures: Aaron Winters

Package design: David Arruda

COMMENTS:

Jazz history is replete with live recordings and certainly for musicians it is the live gigs that teach and inspires us the most. Think of Miles at the Plugged Nickel or Coltrane at Birdland for example. Studio recording present a totally different atmosphere and aesthetic. Recording live with people in front of you (hopefully more than a few), a sound system to deal with, lights in your face with spontaneity as the goal, etc., etc., “things” happen that would be hard pressed to occur in a studio situation even playing the same music. Both scenarios are necessary for interested listeners and the artists towards measuring one’s progress. But it is in live performance that you really can feel a band’s particular kind of energy. In the case of “Expansions” we have recorded some of these tunes on the two previous releases, “Samsara” and “The Puzzle” so a comparison of the live and studio versions might be of interest. Also note worthy is the electric and acoustic programs, quite different in scope and texture. As well on this recording we pay attention to some classics from the jazz legacy, of course done our way. Enjoy!

Special thanks to Marty Ashby (Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild) and John Gilbreath (Earshot Jazz) for their cooperation towards releasing these tracks; to Neal Weiss for his continued support.

ACOUSTIC:

JJ: Written for my “brother” Jean Jacques Quesada, this is a simple head setting up a time/no changes approach.

Continues To Ignore: Bobby’s open, atmospheric ode to the short memory the world has concerning the tragic earthquake in Haiti a few years ago.

All Blues: This classic speaks for itself and along with “Footprints” on the electric CD, allows the band to do anything, anytime.

Vendetta: Playing a challenging chord progression, the “puzzle” here is to play melodically through the harmonies creatively and accurately, one of the biggest challenges in jazz playing.

Good Bait: Recorded by many, this is jazz pure and simple, with transposed rhythm changes as the harmonic basis.

Selim: Hermeto’s tune for Miles (spelled backwards) gave me a good opportunity to reharmonize and re-texturalize the original.

India: I have recorded this more than a few times with several different arrangements through the years. For me this tune represents that part of Coltrane’s oeuvre that explored world music before it was fashionable.

ELECTRIC:

Surreality: This is a way I like to play “fusion” with complex harmonies and atonal-type melodies over an odd-metered rhythmic background.
The Moors: Basically using the Spanish Phrygian mode, this song celebrates a short period spent in Andalucía playing with some fantastic young, Flamenco artists, organized by the great Madrid-based drummer Guillermo McGill.

Footprints: As mentioned above, this is another great vehicle for whatever is happening in the band in the moment… truly a modern standard.

Ugly Beauty: One of Monk’s masterpiece ballads, Bobby completely alters the harmonic and rhythmic structure.

Liberian Hummingbird: I introduce this tune as James Brown on steroids (which he definitely did NOT need!!) The bass line is funky and challenging to play over, composed by Bobby.

Love Me Tender: Elvis was my first musical idol as a kid and after two years of playing classical piano, I procured the lead sheet to this old Civil War theme (“Aura Lee”) marking for me the beginning of reading chord changes as mentioned above in the “Vendetta” description… once again arranged by Bobby.

Danse de la Fureur: From Olivier Messiaen’s seminal “Quartet For The End Of Time,” this is one of his lines used in this case for some “free jazz” interaction.

Russian to English GOOGLE TRANSLATION:

Monumental double album Dave Liebman said in 2016 his seventieth birthday. As with previous drives his new group Expansions: The Dave Liebman Group, the project is also implemented by Whaling City Sound with Neal Weiss, acting as its executive producer. But, unlike Samsara (2014) and The Puzzle (2015) album – concert. Already familiar with the mentioned works Expansions students meet here all the same unchanged in recent years, the quintet made up of students of the master and his longtime partner Marino in two versions. One of the discs of the album – acoustic, electric second (here pianist Bobby Evie moved for keyboards and bassist Tony Marino plays the electric bass guitar). The Acoustic program is made up of groups of materials performances in Seattle in 2014 and Pittsburgh in 2015, and all the electric was recorded at a concert in Duluth, Georgia, in April 2016.

Dave himself in a brief forward on the album talks about the differences between studio and live recordings. Naturally, a concert has completely different energy: the audience in a special way inspire musicians, but, unlike distilled conditions of a studio, here they glaring light, they depend on the vagaries of the sound system, and so on – all this creates as Liebman says, quite other aesthetics. Although, along with some new songs, Expansions play here quite a few things from the previous albums, they sound, of course, different.

“Acoustic” pleased double disc tribute to Miles Davis: his famous song All Blues and play Hermet Pascual Selim (read the word the other way around, and you’ll see what you get). Another impressive tribute to this part of the album – it is a classic play Coltrane India, where the sound of the soprano saxophone Liebman simply mesmerizing. Both the author of the play leader, already familiar from The Puzzle composition Vendetta and starting JJ, – excellent specimens of compositional skill Dave Liebman. Incidentally, I have not decided for themselves what Vendetta I liked more, the studio or the concert – each has its own “highlight”, but “political” composition Bobby Evie Continues To Ignore the tragedy of Haiti after the earthquake definitely won in a concert version.

“Electric” drive not less, and perhaps more interesting. First of all – by a stunning expression and the harsh beauty of the composition Liebman TheMoors, inspired by his memories of playing together in Andalusia with flamenco musicians. The Moors for me – an absolute “number one” of this double album that is worth listening to for the sake of this piece. An unexpected surprise was the jazz version of the mega-hits of Elvis Presley’s Love Me Tender: it turns out, and a jazz maestro in his youth paid tribute to the passion for Elvis, as he recalled in this track. In this part of the album is also enough material for comparison studio and live recordings: it monkovskaya ballad Ugly Beauty, and Liberian Hummingbird Evie and arrangement Liebman Danse De La Fureur French composer Olivier Messiaen, has pleasantly surprised me in the studio version on The Puzzle.

… Generally, gifts are presented celebrant. In this case, exchange the seventies, still energetic, creative and technically perfect Liebman, he made a gift to his listeners double album Expansions Live. However, they can “return the favor”, showing a high level of interest in this work. This addition is definitely worth it.
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June 2016

Stroudsburg, PA USA

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Papatamus:

Jan. 2016: DAVE LIEBMAN [ss/wooden recorder] rarely makes recordings that do not reward listening assuming you enjoy the genre he is addressing. He has well over 100 sessions under his own leadership and hundreds as a sideman or as a hired gun. His latest is THE PUZZLE [Whaling City Sound 075]. The puzzle, as Liebman writes, is working out the challenge of improvising in the context of jazz music, or any music by that reasoning. That challenge is addressed, on this spring 2015 recording, on 9 tracks by Liebman. Bobby Avery [acc p/el  p], Matt Vashlishan  [clt/flt/as], Tony Marino [b], who along with Alex Ritz [drm] make up Liebman’s group, Expansions. Two other tracks are Tadd Dameron’s, “Good Bait” and Messiaen’s “Danse De La Fureur”. This is not a blowing session but a carefully laid out and arranged set, which moves along lightly and brightly. Liebman is a many-sided musical figure, this well represents one of those sides, and once again challenge met. DAVE LIEBMAN [ss/wooden recorder] rarely makes recordings that do not reward listening assuming you enjoy the genre he is addressing. He has well over 100 sessions under his own leadership and hundreds as a sideman or as a hired gun. His latest is THE PUZZLE [Whaling City Sound 075]. The puzzle, as Liebman writes, is working out the challenge of improvising in the context of jazz music, or any music by that reasoning. That challenge is addressed, on this spring 2015 recording, on 9 tracks by Liebman. Bobby Avery [acc p/el  p], Matt Vashlishan  [clt/flt/as], Tony Marino [b], who along with Alex Ritz [drm] make up Liebman’s group, Expansions. Two other tracks are Tadd Dameron’s, “Good Bait” and Messiaen’s “Danse De La Fureur”. This is not a blowing session but a carefully laid out and arranged set, which moves along lightly and brightly. Liebman is a many-sided musical figure, this well represents one of those sides, and once again challenge met.

for OCTOBER 14 2016 release

EXPANSIONS LIVE DOUBLE CD: ACOUSTIC AND ELECTRIC

 

Dave Liebman’s group “EXPANSIONS” has been together for several years, definitely enough time to find a direction as a result of five musical personalities working together, touring and recording. This live recording captures a band “on the run.” There is no taking back a note or chord when playing live. Perfect it is not, but full of spirit and risk taking it is. The excitement is palpable from the first notes of the fast paced “JJ” penned by Lieb. Especially interesting are versions of songs that appeared on the last two Whaling City Sound recordings “Samsara” and “The Puzzle.” The differing material and sound of the band between the acoustic and electric CDs along with fresh and spontaneous renditions of classic jazz repertoire songs “All Blues” ”India” and “Footprints” give the listener a wide palette to delve into.

1/15/16: Expansions:  At Miller Symphony Hall

Show: 7:30 PM
Tickets: $23

For more information OR to buy tickets, click here
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11/21/15: Expansions: At the Jazz Gallery in NYC

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Expansions: Dave Liebman Group Oct 2015 tour dates:

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Oct 12-13: Kerrytown Concert house – 415 North 4th Ave, Ann Arbor MI 48104 Show time: 8pm. 

And workshops at University of Michigan

Phone: (734) 769-2999

reservations@kerrytown.com

For all other inquiries, please email us at kch@kerrytown.com

$30 Assigned Rows 1-2
$20 Assigned Rows 3-5
$15 General Admission
$5 Student


Oct 14
: Detroit Saxophone Center 21301 Gratiot Ave.

Eastpointe, MI 48021

Phone: (586) 777-7541

Oct 15: University of Toledo OH, Toledo, Ohio 43606-3390.

Phone: (419) 530-INFO

Phone: 1(800) 586-5336

Email: webmaster@utoledo.edu

Oct 16 – 17: Green Mill – 4802 N Broadway St, Chicago, IL 60640. Show time: Friday 9pm 1am. Saturday 8pm – 12am.

Phone: (773) 878-5552

Email: GREENMILL@COMCAST.NET

$15 cover

Oct 19: Howard Recital Hall in the brand new Miller Center for the Musical Arts at Hope College (room 221) 221 Columbia Avenue Holland, MI 49422 – Show time: 7:30pm

Phone: (616) 395-7650

Email: music@hope.edu

Oct 20: Ford Recital Hall: Located on the second floor of the Simon Music Center, 200 S. Jordan Ave. Bloomington, Indiana. Show time: 8:30pm

Oct 21: Clifton Center for the performing arts. 2117 Payne St, Louisville, KY 4020. Show time: 7:30pm-9:30pm

Phone: (502) 896-6950

Email: jharris@cliftoncenter.org

Tickets available at http://cliftoncenter.tix.com or Carmichael’s Bookstore on Frankfort Ave.

Oct 22: Bop Stop2920 Detroit Ave, Cleveland, OH 44113 Phone: (216) 771-6551. Show time: 8 – 11pm

Ticket Price: $20

Oct 23: Blu Jazz: 47 E Market St. Akron, OH 44308 . Show time: 7pm & 9:30pm

Phone: (330) 252-1190

Ticket Price: $20

Oct 24: Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild – 1815 Metropolitan St, Pittsburgh, PA 15233. Show time: 7:30pm & 9:30pm.

Phone (412) 322-1773

Oct  25: Slippery Rock University, 1 Morrow Way, Slippery Rock, PA 16057

Phone: (724) 738-2063

PICK UP THE PIECES….

EXPANSIONS: THE DAVE LIEBMAN GROUP assemble for The Puzzle
Understanding the concept of The Puzzle, Lieb’s second “new” group recording is simple: As he states: “Improvising is a matter of solving a puzzle.” Yes, of course it is. The difficulty lies in the execution and that’s when the fun begins.
The Puzzle, EXPANSION’S new recording on the Whaling City Sound label centers on the construction skills of the group featuring five extraordinary musicians—Lieb on soprano sax and wooden flute; Matt Vashlishan (reeds); Bobby Avey (keys); Tony Marino (bass) and Alex Ritz (drums). Each one is a heavy lifter…… each one a puzzle solver. As the eleven tracks unfold, it’s interesting and revealing to see how the puzzle analogy works. The musical elements get scattered about at the onset. Next, the improvisation and extrapolation are addressed as these pieces begin finding their place in the whole scheme. Eventually, it all comes together and the assembled puzzle gets an opportunity to shine.
With Liebman, a master improviser, showing the way, EXPANSIONS directs its energy towards dissembling and reassembling the vernacular of jazz. At the core, this group is an adventurous ensemble, eager to invent and constantly in search of new terrain to explore. Its debut album skirted the outer edges of new jazz interpolation and concepts with a profoundly intellectual approach to composition and improvisation. The Puzzle finds the band getting even deeper into the headier aspects of the process, daring each other to find fresh ways of considering the music at hand.
Songs like “The Thing That Wouldn’t Leave” embrace that challenge. “The Thing” according to composer/bassist and long time Liebman associate Tony Marino, addresses the whole ever present matter of dissonance versus consonance. The opening track, “Hat Trick,” penned by reed man Matt Vashlishan, is at first a playful romp with a handful of highly rhythmic and intervallic based motifs all coming from seemingly various directions, with the bass, piano, and sax all finally meeting up in the end. Album closer “Danse De La Fureur” is a Liebman-adapted track excerpted from an Olivier Messiaen composition written while this 20th century master master was a prisoner in a World War II prison camp. It is bruising and maniacal, dark and disturbing, uniquely Expansions-esque.
And so goes the entire recording. For those listeners who like jazz to tickle their cerebral cortex, that like a good challenge when they choose what music to listen to, Liebman has always been an excellent choice. Match Lieb’s vast skills and energetic spirit with the accompaniment and contributions of the group members and you get The Puzzle, an intensely satisfying recording with all the right pieces coming together……a completed puzzle if you like…..sure to please fans of contemporary and serious jazz.

Dave Liebman bio excerpts:

Dave presently serves as the Artistic Director of the IASJ (International Association of Schools of Jazz-a network of jazz schools worldwide founded by Liebman in 1989). At present as an educator he serves as Artist in Residence at the Manhattan School of Music, NYC as well as guest lecturer at Berklee College of Music’s Global Jazz Initiative. He has consistently placed among the top three finalists of the Downbeat Critics Poll since 1973 in the Soprano Saxophone category, gaining the top place in 2011 as well as placing 1st in the Jazz Times Critic’s Poll the same year, taking the top position in the JazzEd poll (2015). In 2011 he was chosen as an NEA Jazz Master, the highest honor in the field granted by the U.S. Government. Other similar accolades include an Honorary Doctorate from the prestigious Sibelieus Academy (Helsinki, Finland) and the Order of Arts and Letters granted by the French government. Liebman has been featured on over five hundred recordings of which he has been the leader or co-leader on nearly two hundred. His artistic output has ranged from straight ahead classic jazz to chamber music; from fusion to avant garde and world music. Lieb’s published materials include a wide variety of books considered classics in the field as well as instructional DVDs and chamber composition: Self Portrait of A Jazz Artist, A Chromatic Approach to Jazz Harmony And Melody,Developing A Personal Saxophone Sound, several of which have been translated into multiple languages. Liebman’s biography is entitled, What It Is: The Life Of A Jazz Artist (Scarecrow Press). It’s not without good reason that Dave Liebman is considered a renaissance figure in the history of jazz over the past several decades. (complete bio available at www.davidliebman.com)

      “Liebman is among the most important saxophonists in contemporary music . .     a leader and artist of integrity and independent direction.” Downbeat Magazine

MT-Headed Blog

 

Musical thoughts and ramblings by Michael Teager


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 (click photo above for the full review)


Chris Spector’s review of The Puzzle!

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“The Puzzle” is available on Amazon.com! For the full review, click here!

 

Tracks

1: Hat Trick 4:40
2: For J.A. 6:13
3: Vendetta 6:47
4: Good Bait 5:01
5: Sailing 6:23
6: The Puzzle 6:39
7: Off Flow 7:47
8: Continues To Ignore 8:32
9: Off And Off 3:13
10: The Thing That Wouldn’t Leave 5:03
11: Danse De La Fureur 5:03
Total running time: 65:45
Personnel:
Dave Liebman – soprano sax, wooden recorder
Matt Vashlishan – clarinet, flute, alto sax, straw, EWI
Bobby Avey – acoustic piano, electric keyboard
Tony Marino – acoustic, electric bass
Alex Ritz – drums, frame drum
Production Credits:
Recorded in Spring of 2015 at Red Rock Recording, Saylorsburg, PA, by Kent Heckman
Edited by Bobby Avey
Mixed and Mastered by Matt Vashlishan
Produced by Expansions
Executive producer: Neal Weiss
Graphics and package design by David Arruda Jr.
Photographs:
Pat Flaherty-Kastelnik: jacket back cover, booklet pg 2
Naoki Hayashi: Lincoln Center live performance photos
Publishing info:
Track 3, 6, 7, 9, by Dave Liebman, Liebstone Music, BMI
Track 8 by Bobby Avey, Avey Dell Music, BMI
Track 1, 5 by Matt Vashlishan, Matt Vashlishan, BMI
Track 2, 10 by Tony Marino, Daroot Music, BMI
Tracks 4, 11 arranged by Dave Liebman
Track 4,  Good Bait (Tadd Dameron, Count Basie) WB Music Corp., ASCAP
Track 11,  Danse De La Fureur (Olivier Messiaen) Universal Music Pub. / Durand-Salabert-Eschig, SACEM
Notes
LIEB writes:
Why “The Puzzle?” It’s very simple. Improvising is a matter of solving a puzzle… a musical challenge. A worthy composition in this context provides an idea to be worked out during the improvising process. A famous example is the “Giant Step” cycle that is “Problem Solving 101” for all contemporary musicians; another might be finding just the perfect expressive devices to translate a melody from paper to sound; or how to permutate a specific motif through several minutes of playing, etc. Yes…, jazzers are always working on completing the puzzle.
Dave Liebman, on his compositions:
Vendetta in the classic sense usually depicts a difficult human situation. For this tune, I searched for a melody and harmonic framework that expressed more of a sadness than the anger I felt as a result of a “vendetta-like” action towards me from a person I admired.
The Puzzle is in this case the challenge of playing through the harmonies derived from the question and answer melodic statement.
Off Flow was originally recorded by my group of the ‘90s and 2000’s on “Turn It Around” (Owl Records-1992), inspired by the off-beat language I hear in the music of the great Brazilian artist Hermeto Pascoal.
Off and Off (a purely musical title) uses a 12-tone row spread among the instruments in a rhythmical canon serving as the basis for group interaction.
…tunes arranged by Dave Liebman:
Good Bait by Tadd Dameron and Count Basie is a perfect vehicle for playing rhythm changes in two keys, here as a starting point for group dialogue.
Danse De La Fureur (Dance Of Fury) is an excerpt from one of the movements of Olivier Messiaen’s epic composition written in a concentration camp “Quartet For The End Of Time” — a perfect setting for intervallic and rhythmic dialogue by the group.
Bobby Avey, on his composition:
Continues To Ignore – Despite the recurring harm the United States has inflicted on Haiti throughout its tragic history, too many American citizens remain regrettably uninformed and apathetic about the current state of Haiti. “Continues To Ignore” is about that general apathy. Rhythms and concepts borrowed from the drummers of the Societe Absolument Guinin from Port au Prince provide musical inspiration for the piece.
Matt Vashlishan, on his compositions:
Sailing was originally composed in 2009, when it won an ASCAP young composers award. The composition is based entirely on the opening four note piano figure and was given its title after it was completed. Written initially for alto sax, guitar, bass, and drums, the piece fits into Expansion’s instrumentation and concept perfectly.
Hat Trick is best described using both definitions of the term. In reference to a magic trick, the melodic order and material from Messiaen’s 5th mode of limited transposition was selected from a hat at random. In reference to sports where a hat trick is “achieving a positive feat 3 times in a row,” the composition consists of three different lines made from the same melodic material using different rhythms between the saxes, piano and bass.
Tony Marino, on his compositions:
For J.A. was written for a Philadelphia pianist and educator Jimmy Amadie. Dealing with painful tendonitis and lung cancer, he always worked for the music and never gave up. Jimmy would have to rest his hands for months after a recording session. He would tell me: “I’m gonna beat this mother!” (meaning the cancer). After telling me he was a boxer in his youth, he said he learned how to play through the pain! Whenever a project was completed, he would sing me a song of praise that I was his healer and the greatest bassist that ever walked the earth! “Jimmy, are you kidding me?” What lessons you taught ME – about being focused; not taking the important things in life for granted; and especially, the healing power of music. Thanks to the band for for bringing it to life!
The Thing That Wouldn’t Leave is a title taken from an old Saturday Night Live skit where John Belushi plays a guest at Dan Akroyd and Jane Curtin’s home. After watching a horror film on TV, Belushi of course wants to hang all night and becomes the real life horror story. In reality, the tune is about me striving to learn the chromatic language. “The Thing” is dissonance “That Wouldn’t Leave.” Thanks to Lieb for helping me out with the harmony and arrangement… no one could ask for a better band leader and mentor.
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Twenty Years After

On Samsara, Dave Liebman debuts a long-awaited new group: EXPANSIONS

After over two decades of the Dave Liebman Group (featuring guitarist Vic Juris) the NEA Jazz Master unveils Expansions, a brilliant new adventure featuring members of the new generation of talented musicians eager, like their bandleader, to alter the language of jazz. These musicians, heard on the new Samsara release, include Bobby Avey on piano, Matt Vashlishan on sax, flute and clarinet, Tony Marino on bass, and drummer/percussionist Alex Ritz. Expansions is a remarkable band, not only for its talent, which is ample and evident, but for the fact that they represent an “expansion” of Lieb’s horizons as well as honoring the jazz tradition of a legend mentoring the younger generation.

These new kids know how to flow with the boss!! Liebman’s most direct influences—Coltrane and Miles, instilled in him a need for constant growth and evolution. In this case pursuing edgy rhythms and complex harmonic settings. The directions are unpredictable and dazzling, with an emphasis on collective improvisation…a milieu seemingly built for Liebman as evidenced in his extraordinarily diverse stylistic career.

The effect is especially intoxicating on excursions like the funky “Liberian Hummingbird,” the uniquely styled “Level One,” and “Endive,” (a reworking of Monk’s “Evidence.”) “Simply,” the opening track, is awash with rhythmic surprises while “Child Refugee,” running at nearly eleven glorious minutes, is dedicated to the plight of “the innocent victims of politics and violence worldwide since the beginning of time.” ”Samsara,” recycles and re-orders the twelve pitches of Western music several times in tempo, key and rhythm over a colorful canvas.

Deeply felt, eclecticism is the order of the day here for the sax great, as it always has been. Certainly with this cadre of young musicians, the excitement is palpable. Liebman’s heady concepts underline and reinforce the spectacular playing of his new instrumentalists…a group that will soon enough etch its own achievements in the annals of modern jazz.

Excerpts from recent biographical information from Dave’s website:

Liebman has most notably been awarded the NEA Masters of Jazz, the Order of Arts and Letters from France and has been a perennial name in Downbeat and Jazz Times polls among the top soprano saxophonists since his tenure with Elvin Jones and Miles Davis in the early 1970s. He presently serves as the Artistic Director of the IASJ; is Artist in Residence at the Manhattan School of Music, NYC and guest lecturer at the University of Toronto.

After leading he legendary group Quest in the 1980s, from 1991 through 2012, the Dave Liebman Group was formed featuring guitarist Vic Juris which toured and recorded nearly 20 CDs, ranging from jazz standards to Puccini arias, adaptations from the John Coltrane and Miles Davis repertoires, as well as original compositions in styles ranging from world music to fusion to free jazz. Over the past several decades, Liebman has often been featured with top European musicians such as Joachim Kuhn, Daniel Humair, Paolo Fresu, Jon Christensen, Bobo Stenson, Michel Portal, Wolfgang Reisinger and Jean-Paul Celea among others. His reputation in Europe has led to big band and radio orchestra performances with the WDR in Koln, Germany; Metropole Orchestra, Netherlands; “new music” groups Klangforum, Vienna; the Ensemble Intercontemporain from Paris and Avanti from Helsinki, Finland playing music specially commissioned to feature Lieb’s unique soprano saxophone style. Liebman has been featured on over 500 recordings, of which he has been the leader or co-leader on 150.

Lieb’s published materials include a wide variety of books considered classics in the field as well as instructional DVDs and chamber music; Self Portrait of A Jazz Artist, A Chromatic Approach to Jazz Harmony And Melody and Developing A Personal Saxophone Sound (which has been translated into multiple languages). Liebman’s biography is entitled, What It Is: The Life Of A Jazz Artist (Scarecrow Press).

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NarrowsSaxPoster

Sax Under the Bridge:

Greg Abate Quartet and

The Dave Liebman  Group”Expansions”

At The Narrows

Fall River’s Narrows Center for the Arts and CD label Whaling City Sound present sax road warriors Dave Liebman and Greg Abate and their respective new bands on the same night, Thursday, Oct. 9 at the Narrows Center, starting at 8 pm. Both jazz veterans will be featuring music from their new Whaling City CD releases.

Greg Abate resides in Rhode Island, but spends very little time there. He tours, performs to sold-out crowds and records all over the world. The list of band mates on his many CDs as a leader reads like a who’s who of jazz masters, including pianists Kenny Barron and the late James Williams, saxophonists Phil Woods, Richie Cole and trumpeter Claudio Roditi. His latest band includes a dream trio of giants based in the Boston area. Pianist Tim Ray spend several years with Lyle Lovett, has shared the stage with Aretha and Bonnie Raitt, among others, and has had at New England Conservatory and Harvard. He is currently at Berklee College. 

Bassist John Lockwood has appeared on many recordings, is an anchor of the longtime jazz juggernaut The Fringe (with George Garzone and Bob Gilotti), and is featured on not less than six previous Whaling City releases. His impeccable taste, rock solid rhythmic drive and the famous Lockwood bounce elevate any performance, live or recorded, on which he is present.

Drummer Mark Walker is a multi-Grammy winner and Berklee professor. A mainstay behind Carribean Jazz Project and Paquito de Rivera, Walker has a remarkable following in the Latin jazz arena. As part of this group, Walker shows he can also contribute handily in be-bop and swing settings. When he performs, you can usually tell who the drummers are in audience; they are the ones with their jaws dropping.

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Following the death of longtime jazz innovator and icon John Coltrane, his longtime drummer Elvin Jones tapped Dave Liebman for Elvin’s band and subsequent recording. Lieb also toured and recorded with Miles Davis shortly after the release of  “On The Corner.”  Lieb has over 200 CDs as a leader or co-leader and appears on 300 more.  After maintaining his own solid band for over 20 years, Liebman is now launching a new group, Expansions, with his breakthrough Samsara CD. Never one to rest on his laurels or the music from his significant past, Liebman remains a spiritual and musical leader for younger and older musicians who want to forge their own paths rather than follow. As Dave says of his latest group and music, “the direction is eclectic…with an emphasis on free collective improvising, along with rhythmic/harmonic devices that have become so prevalent…explored by the new generation, who, like their predecessors, have changed the jazz language.”

Rounding out the band are newcomers and veterans alike: saxophonist Matt Vashlishan, pianist Bobby Avey, bassist Tony Marino and drummer Alex Ritz.

The excitement will be tangible and the evening historic: a chance to see two saxophone veterans and their latest bands, both of whom have never sounded better, stronger and more committed to their art than they are today.

Click link to buy tickets: http://tickets.narrowscenter.org/

For more information call 508.324.1926

For more information on Greg Abate

For more information on Dave Liebman 

###

Twenty Years After

On Samsara, Dave Liebman debuts a long-awaited new group: EXPANSIONS

After over two decades of the Dave Liebman Group (featuring guitarist Vic Juris) the NEA Jazz Master unveils Expansions, a brilliant new adventure featuring members of the new generation of talented musicians eager, like their bandleader, to alter the language of jazz. These musicians, heard on the new Samsara release, include Bobby Avey on piano, Matt Vashlishan on sax, flute and clarinet, Tony Marino on bass, and drummer/percussionist Alex Ritz. Expansions is a remarkable band, not only for its talent, which is ample and evident, but for the fact that they represent an “expansion” of Lieb’s horizons as well as honoring the jazz tradition of a legend mentoring the younger generation.

These new kids know how to flow with the boss!! Liebman’s most direct influences—Coltrane and Miles, instilled in him a need for constant growth and evolution. In this case pursuing edgy rhythms and complex harmonic settings. The directions are unpredictable and dazzling, with an emphasis on collective improvisation…a milieu seemingly built for Liebman as evidenced in his extraordinarily diverse stylistic career.

The effect is especially intoxicating on excursions like the funky “Liberian Hummingbird,” the uniquely styled “Level One,” and “Endive,” (a reworking of Monk’s “Evidence.”) “Simply,” the opening track, is awash with rhythmic surprises while “Child Refugee,” running at nearly eleven glorious minutes, is dedicated to the plight of “the innocent victims of politics and violence worldwide since the beginning of time.” ”Samsara,” recycles and re-orders the twelve pitches of Western music several times in tempo, key and rhythm over a colorful canvas.

Deeply felt, eclecticism is the order of the day here for the sax great, as it always has been. Certainly with this cadre of young musicians, the excitement is palpable. Liebman’s heady concepts underline and reinforce the spectacular playing of his new instrumentalists…a group that will soon enough etch its own achievements in the annals of modern jazz.

Excerpts from recent biographical information from Dave’s website:

Liebman has most notably been awarded the NEA Masters of Jazz, the Order of Arts and Letters from France and has been a perennial name in Downbeat and Jazz Times polls among the top soprano saxophonists since his tenure with Elvin Jones and Miles Davis in the early 1970s. He presently serves as the Artistic Director of the IASJ; is Artist in Residence at the Manhattan School of Music, NYC and guest lecturer at the University of Toronto.

After leading he legendary group Quest in the 1980s, from 1991 through 2012, the Dave Liebman Group was formed featuring guitarist Vic Juris which toured and recorded nearly 20 CDs, ranging from jazz standards to Puccini arias, adaptations from the John Coltrane and Miles Davis repertoires, as well as original compositions in styles ranging from world music to fusion to free jazz. Over the past several decades, Liebman has often been featured with top European musicians such as Joachim Kuhn, Daniel Humair, Paolo Fresu, Jon Christensen, Bobo Stenson, Michel Portal, Wolfgang Reisinger and Jean-Paul Celea among others. His reputation in Europe has led to big band and radio orchestra performances with the WDR in Koln, Germany; Metropole Orchestra, Netherlands; “new music” groups Klangforum, Vienna; the Ensemble Intercontemporain from Paris and Avanti from Helsinki, Finland playing music specially commissioned to feature Lieb’s unique soprano saxophone style. Liebman has been featured on over 500 recordings, of which he has been the leader or co-leader on 150.

Lieb’s published materials include a wide variety of books considered classics in the field as well as instructional DVDs and chamber music; Self Portrait of A Jazz Artist, A Chromatic Approach to Jazz Harmony And Melody and Developing A Personal Saxophone Sound (which has been translated into multiple languages). Liebman’s biography is entitled, What It Is: The Life Of A Jazz Artist (Scarecrow Press).

Dave Liebman and Michael Stephans Lineage
Balancing the Past, Present, and Future

Since he began to seriously pursue a career as a jazz artist back in the 1960s, Dave Liebman has been on a transformative journey towards becoming a true original in the genre. After assuming sideman slots with the likes of Miles Davis, Elvin Jones, and Chick Corea, to name but a few, he has certainly earned his stripes. Those who’ve followed him more closely understand that he has become a deep and soulful storyteller in jazz in a way few others have.

So what would you say to a trailblazer like Liebman when you discover he’s taken a batch of beloved pop songs-sweet, memorable, hummable “chestnuts” in the popular lexicon-and completely deconstructed it?

Liebman has, over the years, proved to be a risk-taker, a challenger, someone who purposely defies convention in a way that every iconoclast, especially musical ones, dare to every chance they get. After such an illustrious career, it’s evident that Liebman has earned the right to cherry pick his projects and challenges. Lineage, his project with drummer Michael Stephans, is just that kind of project.

Billed as “rock and pop classics revisited,” Lineage is actually a project long in coming. Liebman and Stephans talked about the idea a few years ago and started compiling a wish list of possible songs. Given the trajectory and complexity of Lieb’s career, they never got the chance to pull it off. Still, like all interesting ideas, it hung around and never really faded out of view.

In 2010, the idea resurfaced. Lieb, with Stephans, guitarist Vic Juris, Bobby Avey on keys, Evan Gregor on bass, and woodwinds guru Matt Vashlishan began working on them the way a baker kneads hunks of dough. The list of potential covers, begun years back by Lieb included several of their favorite songs from the 50s and 60s by artists like Elvis, the Ventures, and, of course, the Beatles. Song titles emerged: “Love Me Tender,” “Wipeout,” “Woodstock,” and “Walk, Don’t Run,” among others.

Then the deconstructions started. Lieb and company cracked chestnut after chestnut, and watched the shells fly. Down goes “Mr. Sandman,” re-harmonized in classic Liebman fashion. The same goes for “I Only Have Eyes for You,” the vocal classic popularized in the 50s by the Flamingos. The Beatles’ “Eleanor Rigby” is less loose, but equally bewitching, fueled by Liebman’s soprano sax and a lovely counterpoint arrangement by Evan Gregor. A funky take on “Tequila,” a song Liebman admits led him directly to the saxophone, is playful and rousing, but in a way only vaguely reminiscent of the original. In every case, the band breaks down these songs, the way Rodin destroyed his sculptures, with panache and irreverence at the same time; treating the material roughly, while also stroking it gently as one would a temperamental animal.

Produced by Liebman and Stephans, recorded at Tommy Tedesco’s Tedesco Studio and mixed by Marty Mellinger at Cross Keys, the recording, on the Whaling City Sound imprint, falls at a beautiful and logical crossroads of Liebman’s career in which he is comfortable enough to go “pop,” inventive and mature enough to deconstruct songs with wit and imagination, and entertaining enough to make sure he doesn’t leave listeners on either the pop or the jazz sides behind in the process.

Excerpts from recent biographical information from Dave’s website:

Liebman presently serves as the Artistic Director of the IASJ and is Artist in Residence at the Manhattan School of Music, NYC. He has consistently placed among the top three finalists of the Downbeat Critics Poll since 1973 in the Soprano Saxophone category, gaining the top place in 2011 as well as placing first in the Jazz Times Critic’s Poll in the same year.

From 1991 through 2012, the Dave Liebman Group featuring guitarist Vic Juris toured and recorded nearly 20 CDs, ranging from jazz standards to Puccini arias, adaptations from the John Coltrane and Miles Davis repertoires, as well as original compositions in styles ranging from world music to fusion and free jazz. Over the past several decades, Liebman has often been featured with top European musicians such as Joachim Kuhn, Daniel Humair, Paolo Fresu, Jon Christensen, Bobo Stenson, Michel Portal, Wolfgang Reisinger and Jean-Paul Celea among others. His reputation in Europe led to big band and radio orchestra performances with the WDR in Koln, Germany; Metropole Orchestra, Netherlands; “new music” groups Klangforum, Vienna, and the Ensemble Intercontemporain from Paris, Avanti from Helsinki, Finland playing music specially commissioned to feature Lieb’s unique soprano saxophone style.

Liebman has also been featured on close to 350 recordings, of which he has been the leader or co-leader on 150. His artistic output has ranged from straight ahead classic jazz to chamber music; from fusion to avant garde and world music.

Lieb’s published materials include a wide variety of books considered classics in the field as well as instructional DVDs and chamber music (Aebersold Publications, Caris Music and Advance Music): Self Portrait of A Jazz Artist, A Chromatic Approach to Jazz Harmony And Melody, Developing A Personal Saxophone Sound, several of which have been translated into multiple languages. Liebman’s biography is entitled, What It Is: The Life Of A Jazz Artist (Scarecrow Press).

 

Whaling City Sound

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WCS Press Kit: click here

Publicity: Broadway World, Neal Weiss interview with Jazz Weekly, Neal Weiss interview on Jazz Now, New Bedford Guide, ArkivJazz interview with Neal Weiss, Marion Wicked LocalSouthCoastTodayNestorSouthCoast Today, Jazz CornerSouth Coast Today, SouthCoastToday.com, SouthCoast Today, New York City Jazz RecordBrockton Enterprise, CoastalMags.com, New Bedford Standard Times, The Bay, Patrons of the ArtsSouth Coast TodayNBC10 Narrows, YMCA Benefit Concert, Jazz Talk, South Coast Today, Fall River Herald News, musikreviews.com, Jazz Talk Video, SouthCoastToday.com, Marion News, Fall River Herald News South Coast Today, Archive, Archive, TVBalla, South Coast Today, Confessions of a Part-Time Audiophile

Newsletters: 10/20, 9/20, 8/20, 7/20, 6/20, 5/20, 4/20, 3/20, 2/20,1/20, 12/19 II, 12/19, 11/19, 10/19, 9/19, 8/19, 7/19, 6/19, 5/19, 4/19, 3/19, 2/19, 1/19, 12/18, 11/18, 10/189/188/18, 7/18, 6/18, 5/18, 4/183/18, 2/18, 1/18, 12/17, 11/17, 10/17, 9/17, 8/17, 7/17, 6/17, 5/174/17, 3/17, 2/17, 1/17, 12/1611/16, 10/16, 9/16, 8/16, 7/16, 6/16, 5/16, 4/16, 3/16, 2/16, 1/16, 12/15, 11/15, 10/15, 9/15 I, 9/15 II, 8/157/156/155/154/153/152/151/15

Promo Photo: Neal Weiss, President (Dave Arruda photo)

Radio promotion by: Mike Carlson (John Stein Color Tones)Screen Shot 2016-03-11 at 4.16.18 PM

Screen Shot 2016-03-11 at 4.13.17 PM

Jim Robitaille with Bill Miele, Chris Poudrier, Space Cycles (WCS122) Biggest gainer, Most Added

Alma MicicThat Old Feeling (Vinyl/WCS999)

John Stein Watershed (WCS121) #15, 15 weeks

Expansions: David Liebman Earth (WCS120)

Tim Ray with Excursions And Adventures (WCS119) Peaked at #10, 11 weeks Top 20, 20 weeks

Jim Robitaille A View from Within (WCS118)

Eric Wyatt The Golden Rule: for Sonny (WCS117) Peaked at #17, 14 weeks 

Dave Bass No Boundaries (WCS116) Peaked at #13, 15 weeks

Gerry Gibbs & Thrasher People Our People (WCS115)  Peaked at #46, 8 weeks

Greg Abate  Gratitude: Stage Door Live @ the Z (WCS114) Peaked at peaked at #8, 14 weeks 

Dave Zinno Unisphere Stories Told (WCS113) Peaked at Peaked at #17, 12 weeks

Various Artists/Calm Waters, Rolling Swells, Roiling Seas/A Whaling City Sound Compilation CD (WCS112)

Greg Murphy Trio/Bright Idea (WCS111) Peaked at #1 TWICE on JazzWeek

Danny Bacher/Still Happy (WCS110)

Debra Mann/Full Circle: The Music of Joni Mitchell (WCS109) Peaked at #46 on JazzWeek and #9 on Canada’s !Earshot Radio Chart

Dorian Komanoff Bandy, Paul Cienniwa/Telemann Sonatas for Violin & Harpsichord (WCS108)

Dori Rubbicco with The John Harrison Quintet/Stage Door Live! (WCS107)

Benito Gonzalez, Gerry Gibbs, Essiet Okon Essiet/Passion Reverence Transcendence (WCS 102) #19 3 weeks

Monika Herzig/SHEROES (WCS106) Highest Debut, #22

Jay Rodriguez/Your Sound Live at Dizzy Coca Cola (WCS105) Highest Debut, #22

Eric Wyatt/Look to the Sky (WCS104) Biggest Gainer, Peaked at #16

Fred Farell/Distant Song (WCS103) +37 spots to #30

Dave Zinno Unisphere/River of January (WCS099) + Most Added, Peaked at #54

Lewis Porter Phil Scarff Group/Three Minutes to Four (WCS100) +37 spots to #30

Alma Micic/That Old Feeling (WCS099) +37 spots to #30 

Miles Donahue/The Bug (WCS098)  Chartbound 

Marcus Monteiro/Another Side of Me (WCS097) +27 spins to spot #38

Steve Langone Trio/Breathe (WCS 096) Peaked at #79

Plucky Strum/Departure (WCS095) Peaked at #42

Lewis Porter Phil Scarff Group/Three Minutes to Four (WCS100) +11 Most Added 

John Stein & Dave Zinno/Wood And Strings (WCS093) Chartbound

Terry Gibbs 92 Years Young/Jammin’ at the Gibbs House (WCS091) Biggest Gainer: Move +28 Most Added +20

Gerry Gibbs & Thrasher People Weather or Not (WCS091) Peaked at #1, 3 weeks, Gerry’s 4th #1 CD IN A ROW, 8 weeks airplay

Greg Abate with Tim Ray Trio Road to Forever (WCS090) Peaked at #12, 8 weeks airplay

John Stein Color Tones (WCS089) Peaked at #20, 10 weeks airplay

Azzolina Govoni Nussbaum Zinno Chance Meeting (WCS082) Re-peaks at #12, 23 weeks airplay

Rale Micic Night Music (WCS086) Peaked at #23, 21 weeks airplay

The Dave Liebman Group Expansions Live (WCS 088 two cd set) Peaked at #60, 1 week on chart, 814 spins

The Eric Hargett Trio featuring Joey DeFrancesco & Gerry Gibbs Steppin’ Up (WCS083) Peaked at #6, 24 weeks airplay

Kristen Lee Sergeant Inside/Out (WCS087)

The Tim Ray Trio with John Lockwood, bass and Mark Walker, drums Windows (WCS085)

Steven Kirby Illuminations (WCS084)

Greg Murphy Summer Breeze (WCS081) Peaked at #24, 13 weeks and counting on chart

Monika Herzig, The Whole World in Her Hands (WCS079) Peaked at #20, on chart for 18 weeks

Danny Bacher’s Swing That Music! (WCS080)

Jason Miles presents: To Grover with Love/LIVE IN JAPAN (WCS078)

Jason Miles/Ingrid Jensen Kind of New (WCS073) Peaked #20, 16 weeks on JazzWeek chart, #72 Top 100 Year End, released on vinyl 2/12/16

Greg Abate Kindred Spirits Live at Chan’s (WCS077) one of the last of Phil Woods’ live recordings, with Mark Walker, John Lockwood, & Tim Ray Peaked at #28

Gerry Gibbs, Ron Carter, Kenny Barron, Cassandra Wilson, Roy Hargrove Gerry Gibbs Thrasher Dream Trio Live In Studio (WCS076) Peaked #1 for two weeks, 3rd Thrasher Dream Trio CD IN A ROW to hit #1

Gerry Gibbs, Ron Carter, Kenny Barron We’re Back (WCS069) SEVEN weeks at #1, twice in one year

Gerry Gibbs, Ron Carter, Kenny Barron Thrasher Dream Trio (WCS065) 57th Annual Grammy Awards Nominee: Best Improvised Jazz Solo: “The Eye Of The Hurricane” Kenny Barron, soloist

Expansions: The Dave Liebman Group The Puzzle (WCS075) Chartbound, Biggest Gainer

Joan Chamorro & Andrea Motis Feeling Good (WCS074) Chartbound

Harvie S|Sheryl Bailey Plucky Strum (WCS072) Peaked #35, 8 weeks on chart, Highest Debut

Dave Bass NYC Sessions (WCS071) Peaked at #5, 16 weeks on chart, one of 2015’s Best Jazz Albums by DownBeat

CDs available through: Naxos USA

Worldwide Sales: Ali Khan, New Sounds Consulting

Mixed Media Client since: 1999

Since its inception in 1999, Whaling City Sound, founded in New Bedford, Mass., has made a point of providing a viable musical outlet for an abundance of outstanding regional musicians. WCS aims for innovation, impeccable sound, and professional packaging that captures the sound and feel of each recording. These recordings have, in turn, helped its roster of musicians earn international recognition, and  have put Whaling City Sound on the short list of small labels synonymous with quality. Its business model is simple: If you like the company’s CDs and purchase them, WCS can continue to make more of the music its listeners love, of equal or even better quality. And let’s face it: life’s too short to not enjoy great music.
If WCS artists have news to share, please email info to us at ginny@mixedmediapromo.com;

back to client list

 

Click here to read the full interview with Neal!

 

Whaling City Sound Artists – Jennifer, Jano, Sophisticated Lady, What’s New, Alfie, Cast Your Fate To The Wind, The Faction Of Cool, Whaling City Sound, Kojak, Meatsauce, Liberian Hummingbird Expansions, Receipt, Please, Last Song Lovely Emestina

Whaling City Sound

The 16th Annual Narrows Festival of the Arts on Sunday, Sept. 10th from 11:00am – 7:00pm in Fall River, MA.Click above flyer for more information.  Click above flyer for more information.  

Marty Richards, drums; Cassandre McKinley, vocals; Dino Govoni, saxophone.Gerry Gibbs, drums.

Gerry Gibbs & Thrasher People
Performing music from JazzWeek’s #1 newly released CD
“Weather or Not”
Saturday, June 10, 2017 5p
The 6th annual New Bedford JazzFest for the benefit of Your Theatre 2-7p
New Bedford Pier 3
New Bedford, MA
$20 – General Admission
 
The Joys of Jazz on the Waterfront
 
Great performers and tasty food highlight an epic experience at a nice price in New Bedford, at the 6th Annual New Bedford JazzFest. New Bedford is again on the cusp of summer—thank heavens!— and its waterfront will again be the site for, not fishing, as it has for centuries, but jazz!On June 10, Whaling City Sound, along with various other local sponsors, present the 6th Annual New Bedford JazzFest, featuring national and local jazz talent. Headlining this highly anticipated event will be Gerry Gibbs and Thrasher People, an exhilarating and supremely talented New York-based trio and one of Whaling City Sound’s marquee artists. Gibbs’ last four recordings have climbed to the top spot on national jazz radio charts, including his latest release, Weather or Not, in part an ear-tingling tribute to jazz greats Weather Report.Neal Weiss, the chief proprietor at Whaling City Sound, runs the fast-growing label, which is credited with many chart-topping jazz titles. WCS has been responsible for releasing much of Gibbs’ most recent work. “Gerry is a dynamic performer, who brings tremendous energy and excitement to the stage, and inspires his band-mates.”In addition to Gibbs’ Thrasher People, the lineup at Jazzfest also features another Whaling City Sound artist, Dino Govoni and his quartet, which in turn stars the sublime vocals of Boston’s acclaimed Cassandre McKinley. By turns powerful and soulful, bluesy and jazzy, McKinley will surely be a highlight of the festival, as she fronts the impressive work of Govoni and his sax-led quartet.To help keep the energy high, Matthew Hartnett and the Gumbo All-Stars bring a NOLA twist to New Bedford. Hartnett’s zesty creole jazz will certainly transport festival-goers to the French Quarter, where boogie and funky trombones reign.The day kicks off early with the SouthCoast Jazz Orchestra, a thrilling 17-piece big band appearing at the festival for its sixth year. You’ll revel in their booming big band sound, led by Symphony Music Shop owner Bob Williamson.The music kicks off around 2:15. But come early to take advantage of the food trucks and an “Artists Colony” curated by the New Bedford Art Museum.The fun doesn’t stop after the festival. Bring your ticket stub to JazzFest partner the Greasy Lucky Brewery, where you’ll witness a funky jazz jam session with a house band and special guests.Advance tickets are a steal at $20 at NewBedfordJazzFest.com, by calling the Your Theatre box office at 508-993-0772, or in person at Bridgewater Credit Union (Fairhaven branch), Greasy Luck Brewery and Symphony Music Shop. After June 5, tickets will go for $25. Children 15 and under are free when accompanied by an adult. There’s parking at the Elm Street Garage. The event is under a tent, so it’s on rain or shine.JazzFest is produced by and for the benefit of Your Theatre, Inc. (YTI), New Bedford’s 70-year old community theater group. YTI has partnered with Waterfront Historic League (WHALE) to purchase, restore and convert 149 William St. (First Baptist Church) into a theatre for YTI. Proceeds from this event will assist in this partnership to preserve vital historic architecture and provide a lasting home for New Bedford’s longest running community theatre. www.yourtheatre.org

Talking to this guitar legend, Reggie Young about a release in 2017.

Reggie Young (born December 12, 1936) is an American musician who was lead guitarist in the American Sound Studios Band (aka The Memphis Boys), and is aa leading session musician. He played on various recordings with artists such as Elvis Presley, B.J. Thomas, John Prine, Dusty Springfield, Herbie Mann, J.J. Cale, Dionne Warwick, Roy Hamilton, Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings, the Box Tops, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Merle Haggard, and George Strait.
 
2017 NAXOS Conference, Nashville, Tennessee:
 
 
 
 
 
Pictured left to right: Tom Evered, our NAXOS distribution label manager, Neal Weiss, WCS Label President, Jenny and Reggie Young at Renaissance Hotel in Nashville at the annual Naxos label conference.

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JAZZWEEK:
“Kindred Spirits Live at Chan’s,” Greg Abate, one of the last of Phil Woods’ live recordings, with Mark Walker, John Lockwood, & Tim Ray (#35 2/29/16; peaked at #28 2/8/16, 2 weeks Most Added, Biggest Gainer 1/25/16)
“Gerry Gibbs Thrasher Dream Trio Live In Studio” by Gerry Gibbs, Ron Carter, Kenny Barron, Cassandra Wilson, Roy Hargrove Peaked #1 for two weeks, 11/16+23/15; “Congrats!” 3rd Thrasher Dream Trio CD IN A ROW to hit #1 (for 2 weeks) on JazzWeek! Thank you Neal Sapper, Matt Hughes and all our loyal ‎jazz radio supporters! “We’re Back” SEVEN weeks at #1, twice in one year for Gerry Gibbs and the Thrasher Dream Trio; 57th Annual Grammy Awards Nominee: Best Improvised Jazz Solo: “The Eye Of The Hurricane” Kenny Barron, soloist, from Gerry Gibbs Thrasher Dream Trio
“The Puzzle” by Expansions: The Dave Liebman Group (Chartbound 11/9/15, Biggest Gainer 9/21/15)
“Feeling Good” by Joan Chamorro & Andrea Motis (Chartbound 9/14/15)
“Kind of New” by Jason Miles/Ingrid Jensen (Peaked #20, 16 weeks on chart, to be released on vinyl 2/12/16)
“Plucky Strum” by Harvie S|Sheryl Bailey (8 weeks on chart, 5/18/16 Highest Debut #35)
“NYC Sessions” by Dave Bass (Peaked at #5, 16 weeks on chart, one of 2015’s Best Jazz Albums by DownBeat)

PofA-webScreen shot 2016-03-15 at 11.31.18 AM

Screen Shot 2015-11-10 at 10.23.40 AM3/22: Mark T. Small’s Winter Warming performance; 4/19 added

Here is the update on our last Winter Warming performance and news about
an add-on performance this year.
SUNDAY MARCH 22
MARK T. SMALL
1pm until 3pm
33 Maple Street, New Bedford
Tickets at the door only
$15 non-members, $10 friends of Screen shot 2015-03-11 at 11.16.54 AMhttp://www.newbedford-ma.gov/library/
 
wcs043

SUNDAY, APRIL 19

UP AND COMING JAZZ MUSICIANS
1pm until 3pm
Downtown Public Library
Pleasant Street New Bedford
Tickets at the door only
$15. non-members, $10. Friends
NEW BEDFORD HIGH SCHOOL JAZZ COMBO
Christian Borges, Alto Saxaphone
Emma Pacheco, Trombone
Keegan Marshall-House, Piano
Benjamin Lacassse, Bass
Andrew Madeira, Drums
 
UMASS DARTMOUTH JAZZ TRIO
Miles Flisher, Piano
Evan MacLeod, Upright Bass
Al Nawrocki, Drums
All proceeds go to support programming for children’s events at the libraries

Here are some clips/pictures from yesterday’s Winter Warming concert:

IMG_0275EmmaLee Holmes-Hicks and Megan Koch

IMG_0296

IMG_0277
Video 1  | Video 2 | Video 3

Screen Shot 2015-02-15 at 1.52.12 PMFriends Of The New Bedford Free Public Library
110 Clinton St
New Bedford, MA 02740
Phone: (508) 990-2130andWCS+logo-29Whaling City Soundpresent “Winter Warming,” a series of three house concerts in various styles, Sundays, 1 – 3 pmNext:Feb. 22, classical with EmmaLee Holmes-Hicks and Megan Koch, violin, and members of the New Bedford Symphony String Quartet, 78 Orchard Street, New Bedford.March 22, acoustic blues with Mark T. Small, 33 Maple Street, New Bedford.The historic houses make wonderful settings for classical and blues.Soup and light refreshments will be available.FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:YWCA Benefit Concert:
Jazz Pianist Tim Ray and His All-Star Trio Rolls Into New Bedford’s Wamsutta Club

New Bedford, MA – World class pianist Tim Ray brings his renowned bandmates – John Lockwood on bass and Mark Walker on drums – to the Wamsutta Club in downtown New Bedford on Wednesday night, September 17, at 7:30 pm. The concert is presented by Whaling City Sound and proceeds benefit the YWCA of Southeastern Mass.

At this concert performance, the trio will be playing songs in front of an audience just before heading into WGBH Studios in Boston to record, on the following Sunday. This is an unusual chance to hear a top-notch group explore music just prior to making a CD.

Tim Ray, a composer, educator and keyboard wizard, is the leader of the “chamber jazz” group Tre Corda, but that does not keep him from performances at places like the White House and Carnegie Hall, or on TV shows like the “Tonight Show” and “Letterman.” Recently, Tim recorded both a studio CD and a live session, as part of the same rhythm section, for saxophone road warrior Greg Abate. The live session, a performance at Chan’s in Woonsocket, RI, included alto sax legend Phil Woods as a special guest. Currently on the faculty of Berklee College, Tim has held positions at all of the major colleges, universities and conservatories in Boston, including New England Conservatory, Harvard and M.I.T. He spent several years on the road as music director for Lyle Lovett, and has shared the stage with Aretha Franklin and Bonnie Raitt, among many, many others.

John Lockwood has performed at the Wamsutta Club many times. He is an anchor of the longtime jazz juggernaut The Fringe (with George Garzone and Bob Gullotti), and is featured on not less than six previous Whaling City releases as a key element of guitarist John Stein’s Quartet. His impeccable taste, rock solid rhythmic drive and the famous Lockwood bounce elevate any performance, live or recorded, on which he is present; if Mr. Lockwood is in the band, it is understood that the level of the music just went up a few notches. .

Behind the drums for this evening is master drummer Mark Walker. A major contributor to the success of bands like Oregon and the Caribbean Jazz project, Mark was a long-time member of Paquito D’Rivera’s touring group. He has sev- eral Grammy awards to his credit, and no one will be surprised if he picks up a few more in the coming years. When Mark is performing, it is easy to tell who the drummers are in the audience; they are the ones with their jaws dropping, looking stunned.

The YWCA is dedicated to empowering women and ending racism. From the historic Standish House in downtown New Bedford, the YWCA Southeastern Massachusetts delivers services to women and girls from Brockton to Provincetown and Attleboro. For many years, the YWCA has continued to present exceptional music in comfortable rooms. The Wamsutta Club is now recognized as a relaxing and pleasant setting to hear acoustic jazz. It is comfortable and quiet, and the audience is there to hear music. Drinks will be available, as well as a limited food menu.

The Wamsutta Club, at 427 County Street, corner of Union Street, in downtown New Bedford, has plenty of on-site, easy- in/easy-out parking and is handicap accessible.

Tickets are $20.00 in advance and $25.00 at the door. You are advised to purchase tickets early as seating is limited and the event may sell out. Tickets are available at the YWCA, 20 South Sixth Street, New Bedford, MA 02740, (508)999-3255, www.ywcasema.org; from Whaling City Sound (508)992-6613, www.whalingcitysound.com; or at the Wamsutta Club, (508) 997-7431, www.wamsuttaclub.net. Directions are available at www.wamsuttaclub.net, or through www.whalingcitysound.com.

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Neil Weiss in the news.

click above image to read full article

We’re so proud! For a 6th week total at #1: GERRY GIBBS THRASHER DREAM TRIO with RON CARTER & KENNY BARRON.

Thanks so much to all the jazz djs, reviewers, fans and supporters across the country!
See Gerry Gibbs LIVE with his THRASHER ALL-STAR BIG BAND @DIZZY’S (www.jalc.org) FEB 6,7,8,9 doing a tribute to his father TERRY GIBBS & his 7 time nominated DREAM BAND from the 1950s/1960s…The band features: PAQUITO D’RIVERA, TOM HARRELL, NICHOLAS PAYTON, ERIC ALEXANDER, VINCENT HERRING, MARK GROSS, TIVON PENNICOTT, GARY SMULYAN, ROBIN EUBANKS, CONRAD HERWIG, STEVE DAVIS, FRANK GREENE, MARVIN STAMM, LEW SOLOFF, JOE MAGNARELLI, GERALD CANNON, DONALD VEGA
http://www.jazzweek.com/

~ Season’s Greetings ~

May your holidays be filled with beautiful music
Warm wishes to you & yours~

Neal Weiss, Whaling City Sound

‘Tis the season! WCSound Gives The Gift Of Music!

Facebook Contest!!!

Photo by Jonah Jonathan

New Bedford’s Whaling City Sound label has a lot to celebrate!
Our most recent CD, Gerry Gibbs’ “Thrasher Dream Trio,” with Ron Carter and Kenny Barron, is one of the most-played CDs on radio in the country at the moment, climbing to #2 on the Jazz Week chart.
With a review in JazzTimes Magazine next month, Jazziz January or February, and another in DownBeat Magazine in February, Gibbs tops it off with a NYC/Lincoln Center show!

February 6-9, 2014
Set Times 7:30pm & 9:30 pm 
Plus 11:30pm, Fri
Late Night Session Sets
Tue–Sat, after last Artist Set
Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola | Jazz at Lincoln Center
Broadway and 60th Street New York, NY 10019
Box Office Hours Mon-Sat: 10am-6pm; Sun: 12pm-6pm
Centercharge 212-721-6500
Reservations 212-258-9595/9795

The week of February 6th through the 9th is a great weekend for jazz fans to hear some of the greatest talents around

from the All Star Thrasher Big Band

With special guest Nicolas Payton, Paquito D’Rivera, Tom Harrell and one more special guest TBA
Drums: Gerry Gibbs
Saxes: Steve Wilson, Vincent Herring, Eric Alexander, Victor Goines, Ronnie Cuber
Trombones: Robin Eubanks, Condrad Herwig, Steve Davis Trumpets: Frank Green, Marvin Stamm, Lew Soloff, Joe Magnerelli
Bass: Dwayne Burno
Piano: Donald Vega
“I will be doing a tribute to my father Terry Gibbs Dream Band”
Just wanted to throw it out there.


10/30 Dino Govoni and Jim Robitaille @ University of Massachusetts Dartmouth


All of us at Whaling City Sound were saddened to learn about the passing of both Frank D’Rone and Dick LaPalm within a few days of each other. The connection for us is that Dick introduced us to Frank D’Rone, in every way, and encouraged the partnership that led to the WCS release of Frank’s “Double Exposure.”

No other CD on the label met with so many requests for on-air or prerecorded interviews by the artist, and based on the interviews I heard, Frank was both a pleasure to listen to and a warm individual with great stories to tell. Vibist Terry Gibbs, a contemporary of Frank, said about him, “we always said he was the hippist guy in the room.” By that, he meant that the musicians in the audience felt that Frank was a better singer than most of the otherwise appreciative members of the audience knew.

Dick LaPalm was a true friend who also did his job very well. He gave Whaling City Sound a new visibility, guiding John Stein’s “Raising the Roof” to the top of the Jazz Week charts, including number 8 for the entire of 2010. He was an industry titan.

It was an honor and a blessing to have shared some time with these quality individuals. They showed me that commitment and integrity is alive and well.

Here is a link to the long and amazing obituary of Frank D’Rone by his friend, Chicago Tribune reporter Howard Reich.

http://my.chicagotribune.com/#section/-1/article/p2p-77651892/

Dick LaPalm sent along the above photo. That’s Dick on the left and Nat King Cole on the right in Chicago. Dick was Cole’s record promoter and close friend throughout his career at Capitol, up until Cole’s death in 1965. For those unaware, a record promoter was needed to get new records aired by as many radio stations as possible and for making sure that local stores were stocked with copies so listeners could buy what they heard. Dick and Cole’s clearly was a fine partnership and friendship. – See more at: http://www.jazzwax.com/2012/09/weekend-wax-bits-5.html#sthash.M164u5VM.dpuf From: http://www.jazzwax.com/2012/09/weekend-wax-bits-5.html

For Release: October 29, 2013
from Whaling City Sound, New Bedford, MA
Distribution: NAXOS of America Inc.
Reply for Digital Download on SoundCloud/Dropbox

http://www.whalingcitysound.com/wcs065.htm

A DREAM COME TRUE …

Whaling City Sound fulfills a long-awaited dream with its 10/29 release,

Thrasher Dream Trio, starring Ron Carter, Kenny Barron, and bandleader/drummer Gerry Gibbs.

Since 1999, New Bedford’s Whaling City Sound has been building an archive of great jazz recordings, with a roster of august artists that includes John Abercrombie, John Stein, Joe Beck, Dave Liebman and many more. Seemingly each year, at a time when economic forces have put a real squeeze on the music industry, and jazz in general, the tiny label that could has elevated its audio game. Since setting up shop, it has ushered quality recordings into the jazz audiosphere one after another. One disc jockey commented, “When I see a Whaling City Sound package come into the studio, I open the envelope and put it right on the air.” Bob Blumenthal, esteemed jazz writer for many moons now, often supports Whaling City Sound projects, as a liner-note writer and loyal fan. Regarding Thrasher Dream Trio, he writes: Anyone who has concerns regarding the health of jazz, the ongoing relevance of its living legends or the artistry of those they have inspired needs to hear this album.” High praise indeed for WCS’s musical integrity.

Thrasher Dream Trio is a priority release for WCS’s new distributor, Naxos, a significant new alliance following the dissolution of its recent relationship with Allegro. “When one door closes,” says Neal Weiss, president of WCS, “another door opens. We really respected our work with Allegro, but we are even more hopeful with Naxos, which also does amazing work.”

To celebrate, WCS is giving its most celebrated work to date to Naxos. While, occasionally, high profile projects like this one fail to live up to the possibilities, this one obviously doesn’t; it bristles with energy, color and imagination. Barron and Carter, the giant piano/bass team, certainly need no introduction, but a note must be made about their collaboration here. Their history working together is one of the intangibles that makes this project so interesting.

“We are so fortunate to release this recording through our label,” says Weiss, “especially an album like this that features these awesome musicians, and one that comes at such an important time in the label’s history. We’ll do everything we can to ensure the music gets into the right hands, because I think we can all agree, jazz this good deserves to be heard.”

And, we might add, fulfills a dream come true for Whaling City Sound.

Also check out: Raising the Roof  by John Stein, which finished #8 for the year on the JazzWeek chart in 2010, climbing as high as #2. Also available on Whaling City Sound ­is Gerry Gibbs’ Thrasher Big Band Live At Luna (wcs033) Gerry Gibbs’ Electric Thrasher Orchestra Plays The Music Of Miles Davis 1967-1975 (wcs047).
And stay tuned for Joe Beck’s final recording. Beck, who played with Frank Sinatra, Miles Davis, and James Brown, to name a few, was a Whaling City Sound flagship artist before passing away in 2008.

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4/5: YWCA benefit concert at Wamsutta Club: A Great Night of Jazz

David Bindman Sextet at the Wamsutta Club
What: Concert/Benefit
Start Time: Friday April 5 at 8:00pm
Where:The Wamsutta Club 427 County St. New Bedford, MA
(convenient parking/handicap accessible)
Cost: $20 in Advance, $25 at Door
More Info: (508) 992-6613 or visit http://www.wamsuttaclub.net/
Bindman’s Sextet: Frank London, Art Hirahara, Reut Regev, Wes Brown and royal hartigan
Email: nweiss@focenter.com

A Great Night of Jazz
Don’t miss the spirit and innovation from tenor saxophonist David Bindman and his sextet

If you are a fan of creative jazz and have not heard Bindman’s work, you’re in for a real treat, as Whaling City Sound presents the David Bindman Sextet at the Wamsutta Club in New Bedford. The tenor saxophonist and composer possesses a hyperactive sense of innovation, and his music cries out with exuberance and inspiration. Jazz critic Steve Holtje wrote of his recent CD, Sunset Park Polyphony, “This self-released two-CD sextet album is his masterpiece so far. David Bindman is someone whose work you should become familiar with, because music this good needs to be shared.”

Bindman’s sound is wide open and beautifully played, with a spectrum ranging from rare subtlety to wild abandon. David’s work demonstrates a sense of curiosity and spirit not found in a great deal of jazz. His sense of cultural appreciation is real, not simply a euphemism for world music.

And speaking of world music, Bindman’s experience is truly global. The musician’s recent activities include performances and workshops in Sweden with the collaborative quartet Stockholm Sodra, performances and workshops in the Philippines with Blood Drum Spirit, including as the featured ensemble at the Cultural Center of the Philippines inaugural jazz festival, and concerts in Slovenia with Adam Lane’s Full Throttle Orchestra. Bindman appears on recently released recordings by Fred Ho and Adam Lane.

Bindman was born in 1963 in New York City. He graduated from Wesleyan University in 1985 and received an MA in World Music from Wesleyan in 1987. He has received grants from the Brooklyn Arts Council, the Queens Council on the Arts, the Puffin Foundation, Meet The Composer, and The Aaron Copland Fund for Music Performing Ensembles. He has taught in the New York City school system, at the Consortium for Worker Education, Bennington College, LaGuardia Community College, and The New School University, and has conducted master classes throughout the USA and in Canada.

One real treat for local audiences will be watching drummer royal hartigan, a talented musician that has played in Bindman’s ensemble for over 20 years. hartigan teaches at UMass Dartmouth and is well-known to regional jazz fans. Bindman’s sextet also includes Frank London (trumpet), Art Hirahara (piano), Reut Regev (trombone), and Wes Brown (contrabass).

The show takes place on Friday, April 5, 8pm and tickets are $20 in advance. Proceeds will benefit the YWCA of Southeastern Mass. For more information call Whaling City Sound at (508) 992-6613 or email Neal Weiss at nweiss@focenter.com Tickets are $25 at the door. The Wamsutta Club is located at 427 County Street, New Bedford, Mass.  http://www.wamsuttaclub.net/

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https://mixedmediapromo.com/news-2/

New Distributor for Whaling City Sound!

Effective February 1, 2013, Naxos of America, Inc. will become the exclusive distributor of all
Whaling City Sounds titles in the United States & Canada. Effective February 1, 2013, all orders
and returns of Whaling City Sounds product will be processed by Naxos of America, Inc. We are looking forward to launching a successful business relationship with John Stein’s Bing Bang Boom. 2/26/2013 Release.

Naxos of America, Inc.
1810 Columbia Avenue • Suite 28 • Franklin, Tennessee 37064
Phone: 615.771.9393 • Fax: 615.771.6747

Whaling City Sound

1310 Tucker Road  No. Dartmouth, MA 02747 USA

Phone: 508-992-6613    Fax: 508-991-8876  Email: Info@Whalingcitysound.com


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Whaling City Christmas

by Dana Wright

A Whaling City Christmas Volume 1 is a holiday collection I can’t get enough of. The sheer variety of music is engaging and the quality of the artist’s work is even more addictive then those little candy canes you find at the bottom of your stocking. Better than a petrified fruit cake, these songs are full of humor, grit and so many genres of music; it’s hard to name them all. Folk, Electronica, Easy Listening, Jazz, R&B, Pop, Rock Ballad, Spoken Word, Americana, Bluegrass and Christian just to name a few. What can I say? This album is chock full of great songs and full of holiday wonder, commercial greed, electrifying light shows, a homicidal Santa and more. You’ll love it. Promise.

for entire review: http://www.muzikreviews.com/reviews.php?ID=2368


Whaling City Sound Waves is a compilation of select tracks for the benefit of Schwartz Center for Children,  a caring organization dedicated to serving children with special needs. This fine recording features R&B artists Sarah Brooks and Graceful Soul, classical harpsichord player Paul Cienniwa, bluesman Mark T. Small, Grand Army and a variety of excellent jazz musicians including Shawn Monteiro, Joe Beck, John Abercrombie, and Gerry Gibbs. Enjoy this eclectic mix and the benefits of giving.

From Jim Robitaille:

“Hello everyone.

I want to let you know about the Fall semester UMass Dartmouth Performance Jam Session Series. All concerts are held on Wednesday evenings at 8:00 pm, at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, College of Visual and Performing Arts, Group VI building, in room 104, parking lot 8.
The first concert in the series begins on Wednesday, September 26, at 8:00 pm featuring:
The Matt Richard Jim Robitaille Duo

This season we will be dedicating the series to our very special friend and colleague Rick Britto, who passed away in August of this year.
Rick was, as many of you know, an amazing tenor and soprano saxophonist, musician, composer, and educator. Rick always played from the heart, and also communicated with an incredible energy, reaching the people who have had the good fortune of listening to him over the years..
We will be featuring some of Rick’s compositions in several of the concerts, and we hope you will spread the word about this great series, that is free admission, and open to the public.
We hope to see you again at the series.

Thank you as always for your support”


###

Too often, way too often in fact, we take our Christmas music for granted. When the holidays roll around and we need some music to spin, we reach for the familiar, the Elvises, the Bings, the Felicianos, Elmo and Patsy! My goodness. For some reason, even those with good taste take a pass during the holidays and stick with the tried and true, yet relatively bland, seasonal tunes. Why? Because we know the melodies like the back of our hand? Do we need to hear Leroy Anderson’s “Sleigh Ride” again? Ho ho ho (hum) indeed.

This year, why not reach for holiday music you’ve not heard a million times.Whaling City Sound, the Massachusetts-based label acclaimed for its stylish jazz-based releases, serves up its initial offering of challenging, unfamiliar holiday vibes with A Whaling City Christmas, Volume 1. Fans of the Whaling City Sound sound should approach this with a certain caution: it is not, for one thing, a jazz recording. You’ll find a sax here and there, but there’s lots of things you wouldn’t expect on a typical WCS album, including folk, fiddles, electronics, klezmer clarinet(!) and even a couple of pop melodies.

Despite the unexpected nature of this entire album, we’re sure you’ll enjoy the selections. They are pure, heartfelt, and occasionally humorous; with an organic spirit that embraces the holidays without hammering home the jingle-jingle clichés that we hear ad nauseum. The record kicks off with a gorgeous ballad, Cedric Josey’s “Angels in the Snow,” takes a quick left turn with the Jethros’ folky, funny “Santa Please,” which leads right into Neal McCarthy’s classic-sounding Americana ballad “Christmas Trip.” “Snow” sounds like a pretty Roches-style piece; MM4’s “Jesus Christ the Apple Tree” presents some mellow sax and is the perfect Christmas morning, “let’s all be thankful” wake-up vibe. Elsewhere, there’s blues, synth, country, and all kinds of different grooves on this record. Frankly, it sounds like real Christmas songs played by real American artists. How’s that for a change?

We’re delighted—and you should be, too—that the Whaling City Sound label has the courage to challenge the institutional fortress of traditional Christmas music. There’s beautiful stuff here. In fact, excellent, original seasonal music is written and performed all the time, but never sees the twinkling light of day, largely because the field of what is considered acceptable Christmas carols is fenced off to newcomers. All you have to do is listen to the PA at the mall. With the first volume of A Whaling City Christmas, you can start discovering your own new classics, right here, right now.

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Great time the other night in New Bedford…

David Leibman

Jim Robitaille Trio

David & Jim

Links to YouTube:

Jim Robitaille Trio at New Bedford JAZZFEST 5/18/12

Gerry Gibbs and The Electric Thrasher Orchestra at New Bedford JAZZFEST 5/18/12

By Mick Colageo

mcolageo@s-t.com

April 05, 2012 12:00 AM

An event to look forward to this spring is the first-ever JazzFest May 18 at Custom House Square

THEATRE TO PRODUCE
JAZZFEST EVENT

NEW BEDFORD, MA — In cooperation with Bridgewater Credit Union as its major corporate sponsor, Your Theatre, Inc. has announced it will produce New Bedford’s first jazz festival scheduled for May 18 at Custom House Square in New Bedford’s Historic District and National Park.  Jazzfest will be an upscale annual music event featuring artists from the regional and national jazz scene.

Headlining the event will be Gerry Gibbs and the Electric Thrasher Orchestra featuring Nicholas Payton and Dave Liebman. Whaling City Sound recording artist Gerry Gibbs has been playing Miles Davis’ music for over 20 years and recorded his own tribute to the legendary CD Bitches Brew entitled Gerry Gibbs and the Electric Thrasher Orchestra Play Miles Davis 1967-1975 in 2010.

Nicholas Payton, a New Orleans native, was a musical prodigy who sat in with local bands at age nine. He plays nine instruments and won a 1977 Grammy for his collaboration with Doc Cheatham.

Saxophonist Dave Liebman, recipient of the National Endowment of the Arts Master of Jazz Award in 2011, became a member of Miles Davis’ group from 1970 through 1974. He followed that gig with a world tour with pianist Chick Corea in 1977.

Opening the evening will be the swinging big band sounds of the Southcoast Jazz Orchestra. Founded in 2009 by trumpeter Bob Williamson, proprietor of  Dartmouth’s Symphony Shop, and drummer Neil Sylvia, the SJO is a traditional jazz ensemble that can trace its roots back to 1930’s and the Swing Era.

According to Eric Paradis, the event’s chairman and a member of Your Theatre, Inc.’s Board of Directors,   “Patrons will enjoy a Friday evening of four to five hours of solid entertainment.”

Adjacent to the main stage tent will be smaller ones housing local food and beverage vendors.  In addition, after the performances several local nightlife spots will offer live jazz with no cover charge as a continuation of the JazzFest celebration until 1:30 am.

“It will keep the evening’s vibrancy alive and downtown New Bedford buzzing.  Anyone seeking additional information, can ‘Like’ us on Facebook: New Bedford JazzFest,” Mr. Paradis adds.

Tickets are available at branches of the Bridgewater Credit Union, the Symphony Shop, 94 State Road, North Dartmouth, Pier 37, Union Street, New Bedford, and Your Theatre’s box office, 508-993-0772, or at Custom House Square the evening of the festival. Preferred seating is $30.00, general admission standing room tickets are $20.00, and student tickets are $10.00.   Tickets at the door are $5.00 extra.  Please call YTI for info on Gold Seating and sponsorships.

Located in the auditorium complex at St. Martin’s Church, 136 Rivet St., Your Theatre, Inc. was founded in 1946 by the late Mary A. Smith and is incorporated as a non-profit community theatre.   The award-winning company, which has a web site at www.yourtheatre.org, enhances the cultural life of New Bedford, Southeastern Massachusetts, and nearby communities through the study and regular presentation of dramatic productions and other programs of high quality and professional standards.

newbedfordguide.com

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Whaling City Sound exec broadens label’s scope

By SEAN McCARTHY
CONTRIBUTING WRITER
August 22, 2009 12:00 AM

So you and your band have invested countless hours and thousands of dollars in recording your CD.

You’re proud of it and you’re aiming high, but dealing with the music industry is going to mean headaches, frustrations and learning lessons that you really don’t have time for.

You could use some help from someone who understands how to get you onto the radio, reviewed in the press, and distributed to music stores internationally — someone with industry experience.

If Neal Weiss likes what he hears — regardless of genre — he may be able to help you deal with many of the worries and struggles that beset talented bands that lack business savvy, giving artists more time to work with their instruments instead of their e-mails.

Since 1999, Weiss has been president of Whaling City Sound, a record label based in New Bedford that brings top-quality music to listeners around the world. The label was launched as a jazz outlet and continues to put out jazz CDs, but through the years it has grown stylistically and broadened its catalog to include artists from around the country. Recently the label has promoted a vast palette of sounds, including a blues guitarist, a pairing of classical artists, a jazz duo, a chorus specializing in maritime music, and an electronic rock band.

WCS founder Weiss recently spoke about how eclectic the last few years have been for Whaling City Sound.

The label has broken new ground with “Bach Sonatas for Viola Da Gamba” by Audrey & Paul Cienniwa.

“The level of musicianship on this CD is exceptional. They are playing new arrangements and instrumentations for these pieces. She is a phenomenal cellist and he ‘s a tremendous harpsichordist — his performances successfully combine both a bass line and a treble line.”

Paul Cienniwa is a Fall River resident and is the musical director and conductor of Newport Baroque and Sine Nomine, a 24-voice choir which includes Weiss’ vocalist wife, Marjorie Waite. Audrey Cienniwa is a native of France who teaches at the Music School of the Rhode Island Philharmonic and Providence College.

The Cienniwas have been playing together since 1998, performing throughout New England and France.

“This is the first time we’ve put out classical music,” Weiss says. “That can be a challenge because classical radio relies a lot on their catalog of established composers which have been around for hundreds of years.

“We also recently released another classical album, ‘Brahms: 21 Hungarian Dances,’ by the Kantorski-Pope Duo. I’ve been interested in putting out quality chamber music for a long time and these CDs have given me the opportunity to do that,” Weiss says.

“Screamin’ & Cryin’ the Blues,” by Mark T. Small: “This is our second release for Mark, after his self-titled CD in 2005. I’ve been following Mark for 20 years, including when he was playing rock and roll with the Twisters and Lonesome Strangers. Eventually I would go out to hear him play the blues locally and return every week to get more. It became a kind of religion for me.

“Mark’s spent some time living in San Antonio, Texas, and Las Vegas before returning to this area. The first eight songs on this CD were recorded at the Narrows Center for the Arts in Fall River when he opened up for the James Cotton Blues Band,” Weiss explains.

“Mark is a scholar of the blues, rooted in the acoustic Delta blues. He’s spent years observing, studying and practicing and has made it onto the blues charts alongside people like B.B. King and Shemekia Copeland. He’s very skilled.”

“Toys for Chaos,” by Grand Army: “This local band spent two years in the studio before they felt that this album was complete. They call it electronic rock and it’s been getting a lot of play on college radio. Almost 70 stations are playing it around the country, which is a lot because many colleges aren’t in session in the summer. The album includes two players who appeared on another WCS recording, ‘MM4,’ by the Marcus Monteiro Quartet — bassist Mike Jupin and keyboardist Jude Kingston.

“These people are all nice to deal with, and this recording is done extremely well. I’ve been going to see them for a long time and they’re very tight and original. This is a big step for the label to take, but it’s been worthwhile.”

“Golden Earrings,” by Joe Beck & Laura Theodore: “This was the final recording Beck did before his death last year. It’s the sixth album that we have released that includes a Beck performance. This is a collection of songs that were written and performed by Peggy Lee and her guitarist husband Roy Barbour. It’s an older style of jazz and they were aiming to bring it to Broadway. Laura approached me to put out this album in part as a tribute to Joe. The CD includes liner notes from popular jazz writer Bill Milkowski.”

Milkowski describes the recordings as “easy and organic … strictly in the moment … yet artfully executed.”

“Songs of the Sea: The Lovely Ernestina,” by the New Bedford Harbor Sea Chantey Chorus: “This came out in 2004 and has been our biggest-selling CD in the entire catalog. I was introduced to this recording by Tom Goux, director of the Sea Chantey Chorus, a New Bedford-based group of 35 singers who are all volunteers from the Ernestina. Half of the songs are performed by the Rum-Soaked Crooks. This album was recorded at the Unitarian Memorial Church in Fairhaven to raise money for the Ernestina, and it turned out to be a great marketing tool for them.”

David Reis is the co-host of “Music for Sunday,” a jazz program aired on WUMD-FM, the radio station at UMass Dartmouth. He says that he can trust that an album from Whaling City Sound will be quality, not only for the music but for the professional packaging as well.

“Neal has one of the classiest labels going,” Reis says. “When I see an album on Whaling City Sound I know that it’s going to be something good.”

Mike Clinco, a jazz guitarist from Los Angeles, agrees. His debut CD, “Neon,” was released in May on WCS.

“Neal surrounds himself with a great team and I’ve listened to people on his label such as Joe Beck, John Abercrombie, and Jerry Bergonzi. I was looking for a smaller label that would be easy to work with and so far Neal has helped put me on the map with positive reviews and radio airplay.”

Weiss is able to support the music he loves thanks to his success as a businessman — he is the president of Fiber Optic Center in downtown New Bedford, a high-tech distribution company that sells products all over the world. When Weiss initially started Whaling City Sound he vigorously supported the people making the music for the label. At first he funded their time in the recording studio, but eventually realized it was economically impractical and that he should spend his resources cultivating musicians from the business perspective, where they usually need the most help.

Today the WCS catalog has a total of 49 releases. The vast majority of the design work and packaging for the CDs comes from artist David Arruda Jr., an employee at Fiber Optics Center. The recordings can be purchased at Baker Books in Dartmouth, Borders Books and Barnes & Noble, and online at amazon.com, ITunes or Whalingcitysound.com.

“Neal Weiss is everything that a major record company should be,” says Kingston, keyboard player for Grand Army. “He’s not in it for the money, he just puts out the things he enjoys listening to. It’s nice to have his support for us as artists and not being someone who’s telling us what to sound like.”

In 2005, Weiss expanded his stable of artists to include local blues rockers Shipyard Wreck, releasing their debut, “Reflect and Shine.”

“Neal is a lover of music,” says Shipyard frontman Jim Gagne. “He took a risk to add a blues-rock band to his label and we were able to benefit from it. We’re hoping to work with him for our next record.”

Clinco feels the same way.

“I really think that I’ll be putting out my second CD with Whaling City. This has turned out to be a very positive experience.”

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