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John Scofield and Joe Lovano Quartet Jazz Masters Reunite at the Lobero

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Tuesday February 23, 2016

From Santa Barbara Independent

John Scofield and Joe Lovano Quartet
Jazz Masters Reunite at the Lobero
By Charles Donelan

It’s been 23 years since legendary guitarist John Scofield disbanded his original group with saxophonist Joe Lovano after a brilliant three-album run on the then newly revived Blue Note label. Scofield and Lovano got back together in an acoustic quartet last year to renew their remarkable collaboration with a recording session on another classic jazz imprint, Impulse!, which came back into production in 2014. Like Blue Note, Impulse! now belongs to the label stable of corporate giant Universal Music Group, and as in 1990 with their first Blue Note album, Time on My Hands, the Scofield and Lovano Quartet has scored a major hit with 2015’s Past Present for Impulse!, which made many influential top 10 lists for jazz album of the year.

For a certain kind of music fan — and there are lots of them — nothing comes close to the way these two men play jazz. Fully melodic and endlessly inventive, they sound gritty and driven yet light and playful, and they make music that effortlessly abandons conventional categories. Scofield and Lovano put the “out” jazz and classic bebop compositions they play through a prism of grooves and textures drawn from blues, funk, and vintage R & B. It appears that neither musician is remotely capable of uttering even a single cliché. While the album is fantastic, tunes like the slinky, sidewinding “Get Proud” and the sizzling title track demand to be heard live, especially in the Lobero, where every nuance of these four-part improvisations will be crystal clear. The show is on Thursday, February 25, and the ScoLo Quartet for this gig includes Ben Street on bass and Lewis Nash on drums.

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