Tuesday, May 22, 2012

The National Jazz Summit with Oliver Jones

I'm very excited to be participating this coming week in the first inaugural National Jazz Summit which is taking place in Calgary May 23-26. This is a co-production between the National Music Centre (formally known as the Cantos Music Foundation), the Banff Centre, CADME and JAZZ IS.

Along with my partners-in-crime Jim Brenan on tenor saxophone and Rubim de Toledo on bass (collectively known as the "Invertigo Trio") we'll be performing with Canadian Jazz legend and pianist Oliver Jones on Friday, May 25th at the Grand Theatre following three days of workshops and rehearsals. Pianist Vijay Iyer (who is currently taking over from Dave Douglas as head of the Jazz workshop at the Banff Centre) will also be sharing the bill with us that evening.

I'll also be presenting a workshop on the afternoon of Saturday, May 26th with visiting University of Saskatchewan Professor Dean McNeill. We'll be working with a student combo from E.P. Scarlett High School and discussing various aspects and dynamics of small group Jazz improvisation.

I have to say that I'm really looking to working with Oliver Jones. I first heard Jones during his performance in Regina, Saskatchewan around 1992-1993 when he and bassist Dave Young performed at the local Regina Jazz Society. After the show I purchased a copy of his album "A Class Act" which featured Jones with bassist  Steve Wallace and drummer Ed Thigpen and this CD got a lot of airplay around my house as a kid (my father particularly enjoyed this one as well!) This was actually my first introduction to Thigpen's drumming and I was mesmerized by his groove and solo on the Oliver Jones original calypso-inspired theme "Stan Pat".  Of course this led to a life-long appreciation and study of Thigpen's work with the Oscar Peterson trio.

For more information about the events taking place during the National Jazz Summit, please visit the National Music Centre's website:


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