Thursday, March 24, 2022

Davis Art Center in Fort Myers Doubles Up on April Jazz - Concerts by Aaron Diehl and Wycliffe Gordon

Two Great Concerts
To Close Season
Jazz Series

 Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center
2301 First Street
Fort Myers, FL 33901

Friday, April 22, 2022
6:30pm: Cocktails, 7:30pm: Performance
FACEBOOK EVENT - Invite your friends!

Since his debut release on Mack Avenue Records in 2013, pianist-composer Aaron Diehl has mystified listeners with his layered artistry. He reaches into expansion. At once temporal and ethereal — deliberate in touch and texture — his expression transforms the piano into an orchestral vessel in the spirit of beloved predecessors Ahmad Jamal, Erroll Garner, Art Tatum and Jelly Roll Morton. Moment to moment, he considers what instrument he’s moved to evoke. “This is a singular voice here, but maybe this section is a saxophone soli, or this piece here are high winds or low brass in the bass,” says the Steinway artist, describing his concept on the bandstand.

Following three critically-acclaimed leader albums, the American Pianist Association’s 2011 Cole Porter fellow now focuses his attention on what it means to be authentic, to be present within himself. His most recent release on Mack Avenue, The Vagabond, reveals his breadth as who The New York Times calls “a composer worth watching.” Across nine original tracks and works by Philip Glass and Sergei Prokofiev, Aaron leans into imagination and exploration. His forthcoming solo record, poised for release in spring 2021, promises an expansion of that search in a setting at once unbound and intimate.

Generously underwritten by: Eunice & Alexandra Bremner. 

Friday, April 29 2022
6:30pm: Cocktails, 7:30pm: Performance
FACEBOOK EVENT - Invite your friends!

Trombone player Wycliffe Gordon is best known for his work with the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra, under the direction of jazz maestro, Wynton Marsalis. The versatile trombonist can scat, multi-note, slide, and plunge, just like he stepped out of the 1930s. Gordon has played with many jazz luminaries, including Dizzy Gillespie, Joe Henderson, Branford Marsalis, Lionel Hampton, Tommy Flanagan, and Shirley Horn. His musical colleagues call him “Pine Cone,” since he grew up in the piney woods of Georgia.

It must have been this Ellington era quality that caught the ears of jazz educator Wynton Marsalis, who heard Gordon play while the trumpeter was giving a workshop at Gordon’s alma mater, Florida A&M University. Their fortuitous meeting resulted in Gordon joining the Wynton Marsalis Septet, as well as the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra, in 1989. As a member of the illustrious band, Gordon contributed as both musician and composer. Gordon, who like Charles Mingus says he hears music in his head all the time, has managed to write some of it down, and then hear it performed all over the world by the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra. Whether they know it or not, National Public Radio fans are familiar with the musician’s work: In 1993, Gordon composed the NPR theme song.

Gordon, an admirer of Louis Armstrong, J.J. Johnson, and Jack Teagarden, prefers the melodic approach to playing and composition. The listener can hear that on any of his outstanding recordings. His first outing was with fellow trombonist Ron Westray on their 1996 release, Bone Structure. More good things came with Slidin’ Home, recorded in 1999. Joined by Victor Goines, Eric Reed, Rodney Whitaker, Herlin Riley, Milt Grayson, Joe Temperley, and Randy Sandke, Gordon really struts his stuff on this one, showing a wide range of influences from big band to gospel.

Generously underwritten by: Eunice & Alexandra Bremner.

More Great Upcoming Performances
Sidney’s Rooftop Sculpture Garden
The Stars Shine on Local Talent in Rooftop Series!
Almost very Friday Night, Weather Allowing.

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