Street Date: February 23, 2018
Label: Whaling City Sound
Distribution: Naxos of America
Catalog Number: WCS105
Title: Your Sound: Live at Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola
Artist: Jay Rodriguez
01 Ghost Dancer.mp3
02 Golden Earring.mp3
04 All Of You.mp3
05 Your Sound.mp3
06 When The Stars Fell.mp3
10 Let’s Just Kiss and Say Goodbye.mp3
Jay Rodriguez is one of the busiest men in jazz, and one of the few playing most all the reeds as a leader and sideman with wildly diverse musicians, synthesizing these experiences within his own projects. Jay picked up the clarinet in grade school at age 7, after moving to NYC in 1970 from Barranquilla, Colombia, and furthered his reed studying with Phil Woods(´82-´84), Joe Allard, Tito D’Rivera (father of Paquito) and Joe Henderson. He was playing lead alto with the late great Tito Puente by the age of 15, graduated with the highest honors from New York City’s renowned High School for the Performing Arts and continued his studies at Manhattan School of Music and The New School.
When asked about his childhood, Rodriguez recalls: My saxophone guru, Mark Friedman, tried to teach me how important it was to be a kid. Of course, I didn’t listen, so I was playing gigs constantly. I’d be coming home at 6 o’clock in the morning, then going to school. That was my childhood and I don’t regret it. Always open-minded and versatile, Jay´s first jobs included latin bands, jam sessions in Harlem, and studio work on commercials. Since the late ´80s, he has split his time between gigs with Bill Ware (´88), Groove Collective (´93), Medeski, Martin and Wood (´94), more mainstream acts like Dizzy Gillespie´s United Nations Orchestra (´91), Gil Evans´ Orchestra (´92-´94), David Murray, Doc Cheatham, Kenny Barron and Roy Hargrove (´94). Capable on nearly all reeds, but primarily a soloist on saxes and flutes, Jay has a lithe sound and refreshing willingness to explore any genre and contribute mightily to any ensemble.
He is also the Musical Director and founding member of the New York City phenomenon Groove Collective. In its over two-decade career, the band has opened for and jammed with James Brown, backed Tupac Shakur, and shared the stage with Isaac Hayes, Erykah Badu, The Roots, and B.B. King, among others. Rodriguez also earned two of his three Grammy Nominations for the band’s album “Declassified.” Jay earned one of his Grammy Nominations for the band’s album “People People Music Music” (2006).
This focus and determination have propelled Rodriguez into a highly successful musical career. A three-time Grammy Nominee, he has performed or recorded with a diverse list of talent, including icons Joe Lovano, Elvis Costello, Gil Evans, The Mingus Big band, Celia Cruz, Tito Puente, Craig Harris, Ray Barretto, Latin pop star Ruben Blades and Willie Colon, Eddie Palmieri, Bobby Sanabria, Stevie Wonder, Joan Osborne, Debbie Harry (Blondie), the great Cuban pianist Chucho Valdes, JB Horn, Fred Wesley, Bernie Worrell of Parliment Funkedelic, the great Cuban All Star jazz band Irakere, Paquito D’Rivera, Ray Barretto, Slide Hampton, James Moody, Clark Terry, Wynton Marsalis, Cab Calloway, The New York Philharmonic, orchestrated for composer Philip Glass, rap artists as Guru’s Jazzmatazz Jazz/Hip Hop project, among others.
Jay has also worked on dance projects with Little Louie Vega, Dennis Ferrer, DJ Smash, and recorded/toured with Prince, Gangstar, DJ Premiere, George Porter Jr. and more.
His pantheon of important musical contributions has been a part of the NYC music scene in many genres as a composer, arranger and soloist for the past 30 years. Many of Jay’s achievements can be found in the “Encyclopedia of Jazz” (authors: Leonard Feather and Ira Gitler).
Recently signed with Manager/Producer Suzi Reynolds, Jay is hard at work on a new recording and reviving Groove Collective with a new album as well. Rodriguez remains as active as ever on the international scene, performing over 200 gigs a year.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
From Whaling City Sound, New Bedford, MA
Distribution: NAXOS of America Inc.
Contact Management email@example.com 201.947.0961
“Fleet-fingered saxophonist Jay Rodriguez has played it all in New York: salsa with Celia Cruz and Tito Puente, hip-hop with DJ Premier and Groove Collective, straight-ahead with Dizzy Gillespie, Kenny Barron and Doc Cheatham.” – NPR
“He could be breathy and insinuating on a ballad, brawny and extroverted in an up tempo.” – THE NEW YORK TIMES
“Prolific. Prodigal. Profound. That is Jay Rodriguez. Sometimes the sound is explosive, wild and full of fury, other times his music aches with a passion that’s painful and bare…It is perfectionism kissed by chaos.” – THE NEW YORKER
MULTIPLE GRAMMY-NOMINATED COMPOSER, PRODUCER & ARRANGER
“YOUR SOUND: LIVE AT DIZZY’S CLUB COCA-COLA”
ON WHALING CITY SOUND
FEBRUARY 23, 2018
Multi Grammy-nominated saxophonist, flautist, clarinetist, composer, producer and arranger Jay Rodriguez makes his debut as a leader with a signature statement for a new era and time. Your Sound: Live at Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola, will be released February 23, 2018 on the Whaling City Sound label with CD celebrations kicking off in his hometown of New York City at (le) Poisson Rouge on February 20th, 2018, featuring an All-Star line-up of friends including; JD Allen (tenor), Arturo O’Farrill (piano), Melissa Slocum (bass); Victor Jones (drums) and Billy Martin (percussion).
Heralded as a co-founder/leader of NYC’s groundbreaking Groove Collective, Jay is a multifaceted artist who has lent his signature sound to some of music’s greatest luminaries crossing all boundaries and sounds from Prince, Elvis Costello, The Roots to iconic Latin masters Ray Barretto, Tito Puente, Celia Cruz, Chucho Valdez – to game changers including Roy Hargrove, Joe Lovano, David Murray, Craig Harris, Wu-Tang Clan, Bernie Worrell, DJ Premiere, DJ Logic, Guru’s Jazzmatazz, and countless others. Mentored as a young boy who came to NYC from Colombia at three years of age, Jay came under the tutelage of Tito D’Rivera (father of Paquito) and master Phil Woods. He became a regular at legendary New York City clubs like Sweet Basil on their Monday nights with the Gil Evans Band and held an equal footing on Wednesday’s Fez at Time Café’s The Mingus Big Band weekly engagement. This was a golden time for music in New York City and Jay’s sound played an integral part of this sonic tapestry.
Jay’s latest CD and first offering as a leader, Your Sound – Live at Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola, brings together a brilliant new ensemble that features his rich, melodic and always swinging styles. His repertoire and concepts begin where the voices of Africa meet Debussy and showcases the great jazz legend, Billy Harper, as his tandem saxophonist; Blood Sweat & Tears and Fort Apache Band piano chair master, Larry Willis; the young phenom, bassist Eric Wheeler; Harriet Tubman’s veteran master drummer, J.T. Lewis (Herbie Hancock/Living Colour); and Medeski, Martin & Wood founder, Billy Martin on percussion.
Lauded Jazz Critic Howard Mandel notes in the album’s liner notes: “This troupe imbues their music with drive and nuances that remain vivid beyond the moment of their creation.”
Jay explains, “From the time before you see light, sound is already informing you and training your heart and mind. This record for me is the sound of birth, death, hope, violence, love. Music is seemingly neutral by nature, except for us weavers of sounds and dreams who can evoke music in silence or just in thought, thereby enabling us to take action on wings of hope.”
You might hear Jay Rodriguez and wonder, “Is there anything you can’t do?” The fact is, it might be tough to track down something along Jay’s musical continuum that he hasn’t done. A versatile bandleader, with flute, clarinet and saxophone chops, the Colombia-born, New York City-bred musician is profoundly talented and incredibly prolific. Since graduating from the New York School of Performing Arts and attending the New School of Jazz at its inception alongside Larry Goldings, Brad Mehldau and Roy Hargrove. He has had musical adventures in salsa with Celia Cruz, Tito Puente, Ray Barretto, Paquito D’Rivera, pop/hip-hop with Prince, Guru, the Wu-Tang Clan, DJ Premier and Groove Collective, straight-ahead with Doc Cheatham, Mingus Big Band, David Murray, Craig Harris, Jason Miles and Miles Davis. He has played alongside Joe Lovano, Gil Evans, Elvis Costello, Stevie Wonder, Bernie Worrell and Joan Osborne, to name a few. His original work is daring, groovy, breathtaking and soulful, sometimes all at once. His new recording, Your Sound: Live at Dizzy’s Club, captures all of lovely rawness in real time. Accompanied by Billy Harper on tenor sax, Larry Willis on piano. Eric Wheeler on bass, JT Lewis on drums and percussionist Billy Martin, Rodriguez frees himself up to showcase his work on saxes, flutes, and bass clarinet. The result is magical. Over his career, Rodriguez has tackled composition, arranging, accompanying, and leading. It is high time for the world to hear all the wonderful things Jay Rodriguez—musician, personality, iconoclast, and innovator—has to offer.