Dave Holland Feature in JazzTimes

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Wednesday March 10, 2010

From JazzTimes (Bill Milkowski)
March 8, 2010

Somewhere in New York State’s Hudson Valley, about 3,300 miles away from his birthplace in the English industrial city of Wolverhampton, wondrous sounds are issuing forth from the home of bassist, composer and bandleader Dave Holland. The most prominent Wulfrunian on the planet as well as England’s most famous jazz export, Holland takes a break from composing and arranging new material to chat with JazzTimes via phone. His workroom, which overlooks his wife Clare’s backyard garden, has been Holland’s fortress of solitude since the mid-‘80s.

It’s where he meticulously inputs data into a Mac computer, playing trial-and-error with different horn voicings while shifting around intricate counterpoint lines with the click of a mouse. Eventually these experiments will emerge into fully realized compositions for one of his many ongoing projects. The seeds of his Grammy-winning big-band recordings, 2002’s What Goes Around and 2005’s Overtime, took root here. It’s also where his new octet project, Pathways (Dare2), had its beginnings . . .

Over the course of being a bandleader-he formed his first working group, a quintet, in 1983-Holland has consistently featured strong individual players and improvisers in his groups. His latest octet is no exception. ‘That’s always been a thing for me,’ says Holland, ‘to find and to choose musicians who’ve really got their own voice but at the same time have this ability to really work as part of a musical community and work together, and these gentlemen in the octet are great at that. For me, it’s really a balance between strong individual voices and a group sound. And I’m very sure we’ve accomplished that with the band. All the musicians are ones that I’ve been involved with for some time, and we’ve been developing this music in various formats.’

To read this article online click here
To hear what other jazz bassists have to say about Dave Holland click here
For JazzTimes’ review of Pathways click here