vendredi 12 mai
Samuel Blaser - trombone
Soweto Kinch - saxes
Alex Wilson - keys
Ira Coleman - bass
Edwin Sanz - drums
"ROUTES" Album release
Samuel Blaser - ROUTES
Swiss trombonists presents ultimate Jamaican Jazz project.
Inspired by the legacy of Don Drummond, trombonist Samuel Blaser gathered a gang of greats to create the ultimate Jamaican repertoire. ROUTES is the result of their musical camaraderie, anchored in the musical tradition of the island and firmly rooted in jazz.
ROUTES features a blend of Don Drummond classics and reggae, ska and jazz-infused originals, with guest performances by Carroll Thompson, dubs by the late-but-great Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry, and a full-on t-bone section for a newly arranged version of Drummond’s Green Island. It is a project that breathes Blaser’s hallmark grace, humor, and instrumental mastery, while celebrating the input, background and talents of his musical companions. ROUTES is an adventure, a party and a celebration, and you’re invited.
With his brand new group consisting of Alex Wilson on keys, Hammond and melodica, Ira Coleman on bass, Dion Parson on drums, Michael Blake on tenor sax and Soweto Kinch on alto and vocals, one could argue that Blaser has successfully rounded up the ultimate lineup to present Jamaican jazz to a larger audience. But Blaser wouldn’t be Blaser if he didn’t ask himself: why stop there?! And thus, the ambitious musician and winner of the 2019 European Jazz Award as well as the 2021 Downbeat Magazine Critics Poll (“Rising Star Trombone”) decided to expand his efforts even further.
Samuel Blaser is a 21st century trombonist. Born in 1981 in the town of La-Chaux-de-Fonds, Swizterland, he emerged professionally after graduating from conservatory in 2002. During the next five years he developed associations with the Vienna Art Orchestra and the European Radio Big Band, was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship, pursued graduate studies at the Purchase College Conservatory of Music, State University of New York, and recorded his first album as a leader, the Samuel Blaser Quartet’s 7th Heaven (Between The Lines). Since 2009 he has been based in Berlin.
The foundations of Blaser’s art are the breadth of his influences, his technical fluency, and the clarity with which he applies these assets. He grew up learning classical and Swiss folk music as well as jazz, and his projects include jazz-informed investigations of operatic, rock stead, and blues music. He understands that growth is relational, and has sought out and sustained relationships with veteran and senior musicians, such as Pierre Favre, John Hollenbeck, Gerry Hemingway, Marc Ducret, Paul Motian, Oliver Lake, and Daniel Humair, all of whom have helped him to develop his own sense of who he is.
He exercises the full range of the trombone’s possibilities, including fluid melodic statements, emphatic rhythmic punctuations, earthy interjections, and abstract sound effects, with a clear sense of purpose. He approaches each endeavor as a leader and collaborator with a clear sense of purpose, knowing what he wants to accomplish and what each musical situation requires from him. Blaser’s responsiveness is never more evident than in his solo performances, which use his bold sound to draw out the qualities of both architectural and environmental settings.
Award winning alto-saxophonist and MC Soweto Kinch is one of the most exciting and versatile young musicians in both the British jazz and hip hop scenes. Undoubtedly, one of the few artists in either genre with a degree in Modern History from Oxford University he has amassed an impressive list of accolades and awards on both sides of the Atlantic – including a Mercury Music Prize nomination, two UMA Awards and a MOBO for best Jazz Act in 2003. In October 2007, he won his second MOBO Award, at the O2 Arena, London where he was announced as the winner in the Best Jazz Act category- fending off stiff competition from the likes of Wynton Marsalis.
Born in 1978 in London, England, to a Barbadian father, playwright Don Kinch, and British-Jamaican actress Yvette Harris, Soweto Kinch began playing saxophone at the age of nine after learning clarinet at Allfarthing Primary School, Wandsworth, SW London. He then moved to Birmingham, where he attended West House Primary School in Edgbaston, beginning a long association with Britain's second city.
After meeting Wynton Marsalis four years later, he discovered and became passionate about jazz, first concentrating on piano and later in his teens switching to alto saxophone as his main instrument. He attended Bromsgrove School, Worcestershire, from the age of 13, completing his A levels when he was 18. Early musical influences include the vocalist and percussionist Frank Holder. Kinch went on to study Modern History at Hertford College, Oxford University. He also benefited from participation in the programmes of Tomorrow's Warriors, the music education and artist development organisation co-founded in 1991 by Janine Irons and Gary Crosby, and played with Crosby's Jazz Jamaica All Stars collective.
In 2001, Kinch established the Soweto Kinch Trio with bassist Michael Olatuja and drummer Troy Miller and supported Courtney Pine at Ronnie Scott's Jazz Club and performed at the Royal Festival Hall and the Cheltenham International Jazz Festival. In 2006, Kinch released his second album, A Life in the Day of B19: Tales of the Tower Block,mthe first instalment of a two-part concept album documenting the lives of three Birmingham men. The album includes narration by BBC newsreader Moira Stuart.
Alex Wilson is an award-winning British born pianist, producer and videographer with nine solo albums and over a hundred video productions. He combines artistic flair with technical mastery to create emotions through music and film. He has produced for numerous artists and as a performer, Alex has appeared in over 60 countries with artists such as Wynton Marsalis, Rodrigo y Gabriela, Courtney Pine and many more.
In 2001, Alex went on to win the BBC Rising Jazz Star award and in 2019, Alex won the LUKAS Award for Jazz in Europe. He has nine albums under his own name, including the Mali Latino collaboration with Malian griot, Madou Sidiki Diabaté, which won a “Top of the World” accolade from Songlines Magazine. With a prolific career in writing for screen, Alex has clocked up over 25 production music albums, with compositions placed on television worldwide through EMI and Warner.
Ira Coleman was born in Stockholm, Sweden. Raised in Southern France, Ira thereafter lived in Germany for fourteen years. While in Germany, Ira Coleman studied double bass at Cologne’s “Hochschule für Musik” and subsequently came a move to the US to attend Berklee College of Music in Boston.
“I have very strong ties to Europe,” says Ira who is fluent in French and German. “My mother was Swedish and a famous silversmith and designer, and my father was a painter and graphic artist from Baltimore. The place to go was Paris. My parents met many expatriate artists, writers and musicians.” Among visitors to Ira’s childhood home were Louis Armstrong, Billie Holiday, Ray Charles, Charlie Mingus and Chester Himes. Ira got his inspiration at an early age, though he didn’t actually pick up a bass until he was 19 years old.
“The bass fits my character,” says Ira, who graduated from Berklee College of Music in 1985. “In most musical genres the bass is the pivotal center piece, the instrument which provides a discrete and clear foundation, and I enjoy the many challenges its function poses.”
Ira’s resumé tells the story. Over the years, Ira has worked with such well-known figures as Cab Calloway, Freddie Hubbard, Betty Carter, Branford Marsalis, Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Jessye Norman, Plácido Domingo and Sting. He was musical director for vocalist Dee Dee Bridgewater and toured with her internationally from 2002 until 2009.
One night he’s on the stage at Carnegie Hall playing in a tribute to African-American culture. The next morning he is on a plane to Europe to collaborate on a recording or heading to Japan for a jazz festival. As comfortable playing Jamaican rhythms as he is accompanying a gospel choir or performing in a Jazz trio, this professional bass player has built an international reputation for versatility.
Edwin Sanz is a hugely versatile musician, having achieved both depth and breadth to his musical spectrum. With an aptitude for a variety of different music styles, he mastered the congas, timbales, bongo, drums, cajon, djembe, and many others including Afro-Venezuelan instruments from his homeland.
A talented and passionate artist, Sanz is a tireless performer and has been fortunate enough to accompany world famous artists such as Rodrigo y Gabriela, Steve Winwood, Jason Rebello and Mike Lindup amongst others.
Born in Caracas, Venezuela, Edwin Sanz’s inspiration came from by his highly creative family in Barlovento, where Afro-Venezuelan culture thrives. Particularly inspired by his uncle Reinaldo Mijares, a professional dancer and choreographer, Sanz began his career as a folkloric dancer and joined the acclaimed ensemble, Grupo Madera. It was during this period that he began to study percussion.
Grupo Madera, established in 1977, presents Afro-Caribbean and Afro-Venezuelan culture through dance, song and music. Edwin’s twelve years of touring with the group were of primary importance to him as a “school of life” and provided him the experience and the training which would form the basis of his future artistic professional career.
In 2000, Edwin made the decision to completely commit to his career as a percussionist. In order to broaden his experience and develop his artistic career he emigrated to Europe, arriving firstly in Paris where he spent a number of years and then on to Geneva in Switzerland. During this period, Edwin toured the world as a performer, delivered various education projects and participated in a multitude of album and cinema soundtrack recordings.
In recognition of the incredibly creative environment of his origins, Edwin Sanz pays tribute to his influences and teachers through his own self-titled project, regularly collaborating with the esteemed pianist Alex Wilson – one of the few British musicians to have toured the world through self-produced Latin music.
»Routes« ist inspiriert vom Vermächtnis des jamaikanischen Ska-Musikers Don Drummond. In Hommage an Letzteren ist es der Posaunist Samuel Blaser, der eine Truppe an hochtalentierten Größen um sich sammelt.
»Routes« ist das Resultat von Kameradschaft, befestigt in der musikalischen Tradition der jamaikanischen Insel, deren Wurzeln fest im Jazz verankert sind. Die brandneue Gruppe rund um Posaunist Blaser besteht aus Alex Wilson am Keyboard, Ira Coleman am Bass, Edwin Sanz am Schlagzeug und Soweto Kinch am Saxofon und Gesang. Die perfekte Besetzung aus Hochkaräter.innen, um jamaikanischen Jazz einem größeren Publikum zu präsentieren. Aber Blaser geht noch einen Schritt weiter. Der ambitionierte Musiker und Gewinner des European Jazz Award 2019 wurde nicht müde, die Kompositionen noch auszubauen. So bietet »Routes« eine außergewöhnliche Mischung aus Don Drummond-Klassikern mit grandios eingefädelten Einflüssen aus Reggae, Ska und Jazz.
Ein Projekt, das sowohl Blasers altbekannten und gutmütigen Zauber wie auch Sinn für Humor und instrumentale Brillanz hervorstechen lässt. Gleichzeitig die Inspiration, den musikbegabten Hintergrund und das Talent seiner musikalischen Weggefährten würdigt. »Routes« ist ein klangreiches Abenteuer, eine Party und Zelebration. Und das beste? Sie sind herzlich eingeladen