Wednesday October 26, 2011
Jeff Tamarkin on Joe Lovano
By: Jeff Tamarkin
Joe Lovano was only two years old when the iconic American saxophonist Charlie Parker passed away, but as Lovano began to master the instrument himself, it was “Bird” Parker who served as his major influence. So when Lovano comes to Zankel Hall, it’s payback time. Along with his group Us Five, Lovano will perform repertoire composed and inspired by Charlie Parker—music that is also featured on the ensemble’s latest recording, appropriately titled Bird Songs.
“Charlie Parker was one of the most expressive players in jazz and music in general,” says Lovano. “He brought a lot of elements together in his approach. It was all about beauty and love and the passion of expression.”
On Bird Songs, Lovano and Us Five—2011 Grammy winner Esperanza Spalding on bass, James Weidman on piano, and two drummers, Otis Brown III and Francisco Mela—don’t try to mimic Parker, but instead use his compositions as a foundation and take off from there.
To read the full article and purchase tickets to Friday’s performance click here