The New York-based band, which features saxophonist (and Hartford native) Jimmy Greene, guitarist Brad Shepik, vibraphonist Tom Beckham and bassist Dave Ambrosio, will be celebrating the recent release of its latest recording, Like Before, Somewhat After (Playscape Recordings), which pays tribute to the music of jazz legend Keith Jarrett’s seminal American Quartet of the 1970’s. This two-set performance will feature innovative arrangements of classic Jarrett compositions, as well as brand new original music inspired by the source material.
“Embracing the lyricism inherent in Jarrett’s writing, Schuller’s ensemble offers one of the most euphorically adventurous albums in recent memory,” declared AllAboutJazz.com’s Troy Collins. “Like Before, Somewhat After invokes the bittersweet intensity of Jarrett’s formative work, making this richly rewarding tribute one of Schuller’s most beautiful and accessible albums.”
Other critics called it “a tribute album that exceeds its goals because it isn’t satisfied with a simple tip of the hat” (Mike Shanley, JazzTimes) and “one of the more delightful recordings of modern jazz made in the 2000’s, a definite candidate for Best Jazz CD of 2008, and a high watermark in Schuller’s substantial career” (Michael G. Nastos, All Music Guide). Jazz.com’s Ted Gioia added, “They get past the notes on the page, and into something deeper, an elusive transcendence that defies even this glib critic.”
For more than 25 years, Schuller has worked with many of the most respected names in jazz and improvised music as a bandleader, composer/arranger, sideman and record producer. His diverse discography as a performer features more than 50 recordings, including collaborations with Ballin’ the Jack, Ran Blake, Bill DeArango, Burton Greene, Joe Lovano, Andrew Rathbun, Tom Varner and his father, 2008 NEA Jazz Master, Gunther Schuller.
In addition to work with his own bands, Circle Wide and The Schulldogs, Schuller currently performs with the Armen Donelian Trio, Conference Call, Free Range Rat and the Michael Musillami Trio among others. He is also a co-producer of the documentary film, Music Inn, which explores the history of the legendary School of Jazz in Lenox, Massachusetts.
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