Friday February 07, 2014
DCist Preview: Joshua Redman @ Wolf Trap
By: Sriram Gopal
When Joshua Redman first broke onto the scene in the early ’90s, he already had some name recognition due to his late father, the venerable Dewey Redman. His career got a huge boost in 1991 when he won the prestigious Thelonious Monk International Jazz Competition, and through the remainder of the decade he topped critics’ polls and was heralded as one of the bright young stars in jazz. Now, in a career that extends over two decades, Redman has matured into one of the most celebrated saxophonists of his generation.
Despite his celebrity within the jazz world, Redman has never been one to rest on his laurels. The past ten years have seen him put together electric groups, piano-less trios and traditional quartets with a piano-bass-drums rhythm section. Not until last year’s recording, Walking Shadows, was Redman ready to tackle one of the greatest challenges for a jazz artist: a ballads album.
“Playing a ballad is one of the hardest things to do in jazz because you’re so exposed. I needed musical experience and life experience,” said Redman, who will be performing on Sunday at the Barns of Wolf Trap. “Technically, every nuance is on full display. Emotionally, you have to dig deeper and be more vulnerable.”
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