big fat music Wednesdays
(and sometimes Fridays)
presented by Stephen Gauci
Wednesday September 19th
Cooper Moore - piano
Stephen Gauci - tenor saxophone
As a composer, performer, instrument builder/designer, storyteller, teacher, mentor, and organizer, Cooper-Moore has been a major, if somewhat behind-the-scenes, catalyst in the world of creative music for over 40 years. As a child prodigy Cooper-Moore played piano in churches near his birthplace in the Piedmont region of the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia. His performance roots in the realm of avant jazz music date to the NYC Loft Jazz era in the early/mid-70s. His first fully committed jazz group was formed in 1970 - the collective trio Apogee with David S. Ware and drummer Marc Edwards. Sonny Rollins asked them to open for him at the Village Vanguard in 1973, and they did so with aplomb. A studio recording of this group was made in 1977, and issued as Birth of a Being on hatHut under Ware’s name in 1979 (re-mixed and re-issued in expanded form on AUM Fidelity in 2015!). Following an evidently rather trying European tour with Ware, Beaver Harris, and Brian Smith in 1981, Cooper-Moore returned home and completely destroyed his piano, with sledgehammer and fire, in his backyard. He didn’t play piano again until some years after, instead focusing his energies from 1981-1985 on developing and implementing curriculum to teach children through music via the Head Start program. Returning to New York in 1985, he spent a great part of his creative time working and performing with theatre and dance productions, largely utilizing his hand-crafted instruments. It was not until the early 90s, when William Parker asked him to join his group In Order To Survive, that Cooper-Moore’s pianistic gifts were again regularly featured in the jazz context. In the early 'aughts the group Triptych Myth was his own first regular working jazz group in decades and together they blazed some trails and released two albums: one rich formative, and one exquisite. A destined creative re-union with David S. Ware in the Planetary Unknown quartet, the Digital Primitives trio with Assif Tsahar & Chad Taylor, and continued work with William Parker followed. Cooper-Moore's creative life continues well-strong and unabated into the present day. He will be/was the Lifetime Achievement Honoree at the 22nd iteration of Vision Festval, NYC on May 29, 2017.
Stephen Gauci is recognized as one of the most distinctive and enigmatic saxophonists on the New York City improvised music scene.
Stricken by a childhood illness that has left him with a profound hearing loss, Gauci was drawn to the clear, deep, tone of the tenor saxophone. This was the fist step in a lifelong relationship with, and investigation of tone, timbre, and especially.. voice. The nature of Gauci’s hearing loss are that outer sounds require of him the utmost level of concentration and focus. The flip side, however, is that inner sounds, and the inner voice, are magnified… crystal clear and singing. The intense outward focus developed as a result of Gauci’s hearing impairment has been turned inward like a laser to illuminate, and manifest, the inner voice.
Gauci has performed with many of today's leading improvisers including Nels Cline, Karl Berger, Kenny Wessel, Kris Davis, Tyshawn Sorey, Daniel Carter, George Garzone, Nate Wooley, Joe Morris, William Parker, Steve Swell, Mike Bisio, Kirk Knuffke, Ingebrigt Haker Flaten, Tim Daisey, Dave Rempis.
Stephen currently resides in Brooklyn where he runs the "Bushwick Improvised Music Series" , performing every monday night with his quartet featuring Sandy Ewen, Adam Lane, and Kevin Shea, and presenting weekly concerts featuring many of today's current and future ground-breaking improvisers.
David Stern Quartet
David Stern - guitar
Davis Whitfield - piano
Will Slater - bass
Alex Ritz - drums
Born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, David took up music at the age of five. Starting with violin, he participated in many music programs in and outside of school. After experimenting with many types of music and instruments, he set his primary focus to jazz guitar in the middle of high school. In the fall of 2014 he moved to Boston to study performance at Berklee College of Music. The four years he spent there were crucial to his development as a musician and person. During this time he developed a group of peer musicians while also studying with notable musicians (a few of which include Dave Liebman, Kenny Werner, Mick Goodrick, George Garzone, and Hal Crook). In May of 2018 he graduated Berklee and immediately moved to New York City to join the jazz scene. He is currently based in Brooklyn where he performs as a leader and sideman throughout the city and teaches.
As the son of two musicians, Davis Whitfield's early years were filled with music. He began playing the guitar at age 5, and moved to Jersey City, New Jersey at 8 where he began studying the piano. While attending high school, Whitfield was accepted by the Jersey City University Visual and Performing Arts Program and served as the principal pianist in its jazz ensemble for four years. In 2008, Whitfield became the assistant director for the Jazz Standard Youth Orchestra, writing arrangements and performing weekly at the Jazz Standard in New York City. Whitfield received full scholarships to attend the Berklee Summer Jazz Workshop in 2009 and 2010. He also received a scholarship from the National Foundation for Advancement of the Arts in 2011. As a member of the Inna Dudukina Quartet, Whitfield performed in the 2013 Nancy Jazz Pulsations Festival in Nancy, France and in the Summer of 2014 he received his Bachelor's Degree in Piano Performance from Berklee College Of Music on a Presidential Scholarship.
Wednesday September 26th
Cooper Moore - piano
Stephen Gauci - tenor saxophone
Chet Doxas - tenor saxophone
Jacob Sacks - piano
Vinnie Sperrazza - drums
Chet Doxas is quickly becoming one of the most well respected and sought after saxophonists and composers of his generation. He is best known for his ability to add his inspired voice to a wide variety of musical settings and styles.
Raised in Montreal in a musical family, his love of music was fostered by his father, a professional musician, teacher , recording engineer and producer; and is older brother and drummer, Jim, with whom he regularly performs. Since 2014, he has also co-led the group, Riverside, with trumpeter, Dave Douglas. Their first album is comprised of original music from Doxas and Douglas as well as Jimmy Giuffre, their inspiration for the creation of this quartet. The band also features, Steve Swallow on bass and Chet’s brother, Jim Doxas on drums. Their latest album, released in the spring of 2017, features original compositions from its members as well as Carla Bley, the focus of this second recording.Chet is also part of the Brooklyn-based, group, LandLine, with pianist Jacob Sacks, bassist Zack Lober and drummer, Vinnie Sperrazza. This band regularly performs in many of New York City’s premier listening venues.
Chet Doxas is a Juno nominee and has appeared on over one hundred recordings. He has released eight albums as a leader and co-leader. He has worked with a wide range of artists including, Carla Bley, John Abercrombie, Rufus Wainwright, Maria Schneider, Sam Roberts Band and Oliver Jones. Chet’s formal musical studies were completed at McGill University where he earned both undergraduate and graduate degrees in music. When he is not touring he can be found in his Brooklyn recording studio working on his next projects or producing other artists.
Friday, October 5th
Cooper Moore - piano
Stephen Gauci - tenor saxophone
Simon Nabatov - piano
Max Johnson - bass
Mike Pride - drums
Michael Attias - alto saxophone
Simon Nabatov, a remarkable jazz pianist and composer, was born in Moscow, Russia, in 1959. Since his father was a musician, Nabatov's first steps into the world of music came very early. At the tender age of three he began learning to play the piano; by his sixth birthday he was composing. He later attended the Central School of Music, and next the Moscow Conservatory. His preference, and talent, for jazz was soon evident to all. In 1979, Nabatov crossed the threshold into the professional world of jazz in a little club in Rome. He performed there in place of pianist Dick Wellstood. A year later, Nabatov entered New York's famous Juilliard School of Music, made possible because his family had left Moscow and settled in the United States. In 1984, only a year out of music school, Keyboard Magazine named Nabatov as Best Pianist. Over the following years, Nabatov worked with many well-known jazz artists like Kenny Wheeler, Chet Baker, Sonny Fortune, Ray Anderson, George Adams, Mark Feldman, and Attila Zoller. Nabatov also performed with the Perry Robinson Quartet, the Klaus König Orchestra, and the Ray Anderson Quartet, among others. In 1985, Nabatov won second place in the International Great Jazz Pianist Competition in the United States. The next year, he recorded the album Circle the Line with bassist Ed Schuller and drummer Paul Motian. Two years later, ENJA Records released his album Inside Looking Out. In 1989, Nabatov left New York to move to Cologne, Germany. That same year he won third place in the Martial Solal International Jazz Piano Competition in France. He has also been awarded a National Endowment for the Arts grant. The album For All the Marbles Suite, recorded under the ASP label, hit the stores in 1991. The Switzerland-based Hatology label released Sneak Preview. In 1993 Nabatov recorded Tough Customer with drummer Tom Rainey and bassist Mark Helias. The album featured unique tracks like "Sage," "Puzzled," and "Simple Simon." During his career, Nabatov has also been a teacher, working at schools such as the Folkwang Hochschule, the International Jazz and Rock Academy, and the Musikhochschule Luzern.
New York bassist Max Johnson has established himself as one of the more versatile figures in jazz and improvised music, a leader with a strong, woody tone who shows himself capable whether playing tunes with a swinging drive or exploring abstract terrain with a texture-oriented approach.” (Peter Margasak, The Chicago Reader) As an improvising bassist, Max Johnson has worked with legendary figures of the music such as John Zorn, Anthony Braxton, Muhal Richard Abrams, Mary Halvorson, Nels Cline, among others. With a non-stop touring schedule at top festivals and performing arts centers such as Lincoln Center, the United Nations, Lollapalooza, Bern Jazz Festival, Quebec City Festival, Max also has a prolific recording history, having released nine albums under his own name, and has played on over thirty records.**
Wednesday, October 10th
Cooper Moore - piano
Stephen Gauci - tenor saxophone
Shoko Nagai- piano/processor
Maryanne de Prophetis - voice
Ron Horton - trumpet
Dean Johnson - bass
Since moving to New York in 1999 Shoko Nagai has been dubbed an "MVP" of the downtown jazz scene, performing with John Zorn, Erik Friedlander, Ikue Mori, Marc Ribot, Frank London, Matana Roberts, Miho Hatori (Cibo Matto), Satoshi Takeishi, Butch Morris, Elliot Sharp, Jeremiah Lockwood and many eclectic performers. Nagai frequently tours internationally. Her compositions for films include, L'amour Cache (2007), directed by Alessandro Capone and conducted by Butch Morris, as well as a trio of films directed by Linda Hoaglund: ANPO: Art X War (2010 Toronto, DOC NYC, Vancouver, and Hong Kong film festivals), Things Left Behind, (2012) produced by Japan's national broadcaster, NHK, and The Wound and The Gift, narrated by Vanessa Redgrave (Vancouver, DOC NYC, Tokyo FilmX 2014).**
Maryanne de Prophetis grew up in a musically diverse family, graduating from Temple University College of Music where she studied piano and harmony with Natalie Hinderas. During that time she also began jazz vocal and theory studies with bassist Al Stauffer. She later arrived in New York to continue musical studies with Warne Marsh, and more recently the great and inspiring jazz vocalist Jay Clayton.
Her trio with Frank Kimbrough and Ron Horton was formed in 2002 and has been playing in New York City venues since then. She has performed with various other ensembles at The Kitano, Cornelia Street Café, Sweet Rhythm, CBGBs, Barbes, 55 Bar, The Local 269, InGarden Concerts as part of Evolving Music/Voice, the Clemente Soto Velez Community as part of Evolving Voice, The Brecht Forum, Puppets Jazz, Jazz Nights in Princeton, 5C Cafe, Scholes Street Studio, Ibeam, and Why Not Cafe. She has regularly performed with the Mark Lamb Dance Second Saturday Salons, as featured artist, and as guest.
Over the last decade and a half Maryanne has continued to develop her compositional voice. Her recent recording Tell A Star, represents nearly 13 years of her compositional style, marked by wide imagination and emotional range. The last several years, while continuing to write, she has explored playing improvised music with many different musicians, and formed an improvising quartet, FIDO::qrtet, with pianist Shoko Nagai, drummer Satoshi Takeishi, and trumpeter Ron Horton. Satoshi was an organic addition to the original trio for this recording of Tell A Star.
The entire quartet of Tell A Star is excited to release this recording on ENNArecords. Maryanne is founder of this newly-formed label and is looking forwfard to more releases of quality music in the near future.
This Project is being supported by FanFunded, a new promotional and fund-raising off-shoot of the ArtistShare label. Tell A Star was graciously invited to participate in FanFunded by the multi-Grammy Award Winning composer, Maria Schneider.
Her debut trio CD, A Glance, was released on LoNote Records, and features original compositions. It is also available at Art of Life Records as download.
Lilacs in Winter, also mostly original material, is available at Blue Music Group**
Wednesday, October 17th
Cooper Moore - piano
Stephen Gauci - tenor saxophone
Daniel Carter - woodwinds
John Murchison - bass
Brent Arnold - cello
Eylem Basaldi - violin
Sami Abu Shumays - violin
Tom Swafford - violin
Zafer Tawil - violin
Daniel Carter is one of the greatest and most loved, legendary masters of the NYC creative music scene. Born in Wilkinsburg, Pennsylvania in 1945, over the past four decades Carter has performed with many of leading creative musicians of our time, including; Sun Ra, Cecil Taylor, Billy Bang, William Parker, Roy Campbell, Sabir Mateen, Sonic Youth, Simone Forti, Joan Miller, Thurston Moore (Sonic Youth), Nayo Takasaki, Earl Freeman, Dewey Johnson, Nami Yamamoto, Matthew Shipp, Billy Martin, John Medeski, Wilber Morris, Denis Charles, MMW (Medeski, Martin, & Wood), Vernon Reid (Living Colour), Options, Spring Heel Jack, Yo La Tengo, Federico Ughi, Raphé Malik, Sam Rivers, Sunny Murray, Hamiet Bluiett, Bob Moses, Jaco Pastorius, Enrico Rava, David S. Ware, Steve Swell, Matt Lavelle, Karl Berger, Don Pate, Gunter Hampel, David Grubbs, the No Kneck Blues Band, Alan Silva, Susie Ibarra, Steve Dalachinsky, D.J. Logic, Margaret Beals, Douglas Elliot, Butch Morris, TEST, Other Dimensions In Music, One World Ensemble, Saturnalia String Trio, Levitation Unit, Wet Paint.
Daniel continues to inspire and nurture future generations of improvisers through his selfless performances, recordings, and informal sessions.**
John Murchison is a Brooklyn-based bassist. He is active in many of the various music scenes of NYC, from pop and musical theater, to jazz and avant-garde, to traditional musics from Africa and the Middle East.
He has performed in a variety of theater productions from downtown to Time Square, most recently with the Broadway production of "Natasha, Pierre, & the Great Comet of 1812". He has performed around NYC and in Puerto Rico as bassist with folkloric dance ensemble Danza Fiesta. He has also performed with popular artists from West Africa such as Fode Kouyate and Sekouba Kandia, and plays regularly in NYC with Kakande, featuring Famoro Dioubate and Missia Saran Dioubate.
John is one of the most in-demand bassists for Middle Eastern music in NYC. Some of his most regular collaborations in NYC include Takht Al-Nagham (Syrian), Zikrayat (Egyptian), Sharq Attack (Arabic), Seyyah (Greek/Turkish), Nashaz (Arabic/Jazz), Ensemble Fanaa (North African/Jazz), Brooklyn Nomads (Lebanese), Asefa (North African/Sephardic)
While bass is his primary instrument, he also enjoys performing on other traditional instruments like the gimbri, bendir, qanun, and ney. **
8pm & 9pm sets
Tony Malaby Quartet
Tony Malaby - tenor saxophone
Marc Hannaford - piano
William Parker - bass
Billy Mintz - drums
In his two decades as an integral member of the thriving improvised music community of New York City, saxophonist and composer Tony Malaby has emerged as a wholly unique and singular voice. Malaby was recently named one of Downbeat's "80 Coolest Things in Jazz", saying that, "[Malaby] is a formidably accomplished soprano and tenor saxophonist with enviable tone and an endless font of compelling ideas, yet he steers his music away from perfection," and that "his considerable gifts as a melodist tend to sneak up on you." Jazztimes added that Malaby is, "a hero of today's improvised music scene". This outpour of praise is unsurprising given the number of projects which Malaby has been involved with since his arrival in New York in the early-1990s. In recent years, Malaby has led and recorded many of his own projects--his Tamarindo Trio with Nasheet Waits and William Parker, TubaCello with John Hollenbeck, Chris Hoffman and Dan Peck and Palomo Recio with Ben Monder, Eivind Opsvik, and Nasheet Waits. Malaby is also a stalwart sideman, and has lent his talents to such groups as the Paul Motian Electric Be-Bop Band, Charlie Haden's Liberation Music Orchestra, Fred Hersch's Quintet, Mark Helias' Open Loose,Chris Lightcap's Bigmouth, Eivind Opsvik's Overseas and Ches Smith's These Arches. Born and raised in Tucson, Arizona, Malaby's Mexican heritage permeates his musical life. Malaby remembers that, "being a kid, in 1970s Tucson, was very Mexican. There was an atmosphere created there with music, rituals -going to mass,funerals,praying the rosary, plumes of incense smoke ...all of these things, and how they would overlap, have lingered. I really think that's who I am: that's how I came up. And there's really strong imagery for me, from back then. I try to communicate those experiences, with my sound and how I play." Malaby's vivid improvisational work and his sparse, folklike melodies clearly convey these youthful impressions, and are part-and-parcel with his idiosyncratic musical concept. Malaby has dubbed all of projects with Spanish names and that atmosphere pervades all of his recordings. Malaby has been recording for the Clean Feed label since the 2007 self-titled debut release of his Tamarindo trio, and since that point, he has released a string of records under his own name for Clean Feed: Voladores, a quartet record featuring drummers Tom Rainey, John Hollenbeck, and Drew Gress; the ambitious nonet record Novela, in which Malaby's compositions were arranged by the gifted composer and pianist Kris Davis; and 2010's Tamarindo Live which featured Tamrindo, with the addition of legendary AACM trumpeter Wadada Leo Smith. In May of 2014, Malaby released his latest record with his Tamarindo trio, Somos Agua, which serves to further solidify the telepathic improvisational connection that he has fostered with Parker and Waits since the band's inception. Unlike many saxophonists who ostentatiously place themselves in front, or solo on top of, a rhythm section, Tamarindo evidences a long-held belief and practice of Malaby's in which he texturally immerses himself within the sounds of his bandmates and the result is, what Malaby called, "an organic, self-generating whole". In the forthcoming months, Malaby will release the debut record of his TubaCello band on Clean Feed records as well as continuing his extensive touring with Tamarindo and TubaCello in 2015. Palomo Recio will record by the end of the year and a solo record is in the works, too.**
Described by Jason Moran as a pianist who has “taken full control of the music histories that interest him: from Messaien to Earl Hines…with a new sound that only comes from within him,” Marc Hannaford has established himself in the New York jazz and improvised music scene since his arrival from Australia in 2013. He has performed and recorded with improvised music luminaries such as Tim Berne, Tom Rainey, Mark Helias, Tony Malaby, Jen Shyu, and Ellery Eskelin. His most recent release, Can You See With Two Sets of Eyes? was pronounced “advanced, contemporary, improvised, virtuosic music might sound like, a decade or more into the future” (The Weekend Australian).
Marc Hannaford won the 2013 Music Council of Australia’s Freedman Fellowship, the 2013 Jazz “Bell” award for most original album (Sarcophile), and the 2013 Australian Performing Rights Association’s Art Award for best work (“Anda Two”). Other awards and nominations have come from the National Jazz Awards, The A.R.I.A. awards, The AIR awards, The Australia Council for the Arts, the Ian Potter Foundation, University of Melbourne, and the International Song Contest.Marc current resides in New York. He has performed at lauded New York venues The Stone, The Jazz Gallery, Spectrum, Greenwich Music House, Cornelia Street Café, Barbès, and Ibeam, and in Australia under the auspices of The Wangaratta Festival of Jazz, The Stonnington Jazz Festival, Jazzgroove, The Melbourne Jazz Fringe Festival, The Melbourne Jazz Co-operative, The Make-It-Up Club, The Sydney Improvised Music Association. His collaborators have included Tony Malaby, Tom Rainey, Tim Berne, Scott Tinkler, Ingrid Laubrock, Anna Webber, Simon Barker, John Rodgers, Ken Edie, Satoshi Takeishi, Simon Jermyn, and Ben Gerstein.
A recording of his twenty-minute work, “Fainter, Stronger,” commissioned by the Monash Art Ensemble, will be released in 2019, and he is currently working on material for trio, solo piano with electronics, and chamber ensembles.