NTCH Summer Jazz Party-Charles Lloyd Kindred Spirits Quintet
Much anticipated by jazz listeners, the NTCH Summer Jazz Party, one of the most established Jazz Festival in Taiwan with some of the greatest Jazz performers in its cast, has officially entered its 17th year. The theme of this year is “Life is Jazz, Play it Loud.”
Jazz music began in New Orleans and has a history of more than a century. Nowadays, the term “Jazz” means more than the jazz music itself. It also represents an attitude of living. It is a style that is free, unrestrained, and improvised. It encourages people to express themselves with confidence and bravery.
The 2019 NTCH Summer Jazz Party has invited a great cast of world-famous Jazz musicians. The legendary saxophone player Charles Lloyd, winner of Monterey Jazz Festival lifetime achievement award, will perform in Taiwan again. The 16-year-old jazz pianist Joey Alexander, who already won two Grammy’s nominations, will come and perform in Taiwan for the first time. The NTCH Summer Jazz Project Concert, Jazz Afternoon with fresh groove, and Jazz at the Bistro will feature some of the best jazz musicians in Taiwan and from abroad. This year the festival will pay tribute to Louis Armstrong, the father of jazz music, and bring the audience back to the golden age of jazz in the early and middle 20th century. The Summer Jazz Party also presents a special event that transforms the Experimental Theatre into St. Nick’s Pub, the legendary jazz pub full of humanistic jazz spirit in Harlem, New York City, and brings the audience back in time to the Jazz Age.
It doesn’t matter if you prefer to enjoy jazz in a pub, in a concert hall, or in an outdoor swing party, NTCH Summer Jazz Party has something for all of you. Let’s play it loud!
Charles Lloyd, Saxophone
The critical consensus is that Charles Lloyd has never sounded better. The depth of his expression reflects a lifetime of experience. Lloyd has a legendary history in the music world, and could certainly be in a position to slow down and rest on his laurels. But looking back has never been of great interest to this tender warrior; this seeker of beauty and truth. “Go forward,” is his motto, as he keeps shifting to a higher, well calibrated gear.
His concerts and recordings are events of pristine beauty and elegance, full of intensely felt emotion and passion that touches deep inside the heart. This is not entertainment, but the powerful uncorrupted expression of beauty through music. When music vibrates, the soul vibrates and touches the spirit within. “Mr. Lloyd has come up with a strange and beautiful distillation of the American experience, part abandoned and wild, part immensely controlled and sophisticated.” Peter Watrous, The New York Times.
Charles Lloyd was born in Memphis, Tennessee, on March 15, 1938. Like New Orleans, 400 miles to the south on the Mississippi, Memphis has a rich river culture and musical heritage saturated in blues, gospel and jazz. Lloyd’s ancestry of African, Cherokee, Mongolian, and Irish reflects a similar rich culture. He was given his first saxophone at the age of 9, and was riveted to 1940’s radio broadcasts by Charlie Parker, Coleman Hawkins, Lester Young, Billie Holiday and Duke Ellington. His early teachers included pianist Phineas Newborn and saxophonist Irvin Reason. His closest childhood friend was the great trumpeter Booker Little. As a teenager Lloyd played jazz with saxophonist George Coleman and was a sideman for blues greats Johnny Ace, Bobby Blue Bland, Howlin’ Wolf and B.B. King.
In 1965 Lloyd formed his own quartet, a brilliant ensemble that introduced the jazz world to the talents of pianist Keith Jarrett, drummer
Jack DeJohnette and bassist Cecil McBee. Their first release together was a studio recording, Dream Weaver, followed by Forest Flower: Live at Monterey, (1966). Forest Flower made history as one of the first jazz recordings to sell a million copies, and the album’s firsts continued as it became a stunning crossover success that appealed to a popular mass market audiences and gained heavy airplay on FM radio. The Quartet was the first jazz group to appear at the famed Fillmore Auditorium in San Francisco and other rock palaces and shared billing with Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Cream, the Grateful Dead and Jefferson Airplane.
At the height of his career in 1970, Lloyd disbanded the quartet and dropped from sight, withdrawing to pursue an inner journey in Big Sur. He practically disappeared from the jazz scene. It wasn’t until 1981 that Lloyd moved to break a decade of silence in the jazz world when a remarkable 18-year-old French pianist, Michel Petrucciani, arrived in Big Sur. Lloyd was compelled to help introduce this gifted artist to the world. This led to U.S., European and Japanese tours in 1982 and 1983 with Petrucciani
In 1986, after being hospitalized with a nearly fatal medical condition, Lloyd rededicated himself to music. Lloyd made his first recording for ECM Records, “Fish Out of Water” in 1989. The project marked the beginning of a new wave of Lloyd compositions and recordings. ECM’s producer, Manfred Eicher, compared the recording to a Giacometti painting, saying, “I really believe this is the refined essence of what music should be. All the meat is gone, only the bones remain.” Charles Lloyd has shown great consistency and creativity in his period with ECM, much of his music containing a strong spiritual and world music element.
Charles Lloyd maintains an active performance and recording schedule with the New Quartet, Sangam, Maria Farantouri and special projects around the world. He celebrated his 75th birthday with concerts in the Temple of Dendur at the Metropolitan Museum and the Kennedy Center Concert Hall.
Eric Harland, drums
Multi-Grammy Nominated Drummer, Eric Harland is the most «In demand drummer» of his generation. He has already been on close to 200 recordings at his age of 36. Eric has been recognized in the Boston Globe, New York Times, JazzTimes, Modern Drummer, All About Jazz, The New Yorker, DownBeat, L’Uomo Vogue and other prominent publications.
It has been his privilege to share the stage with masters such as Betty Carter, Joe Henderson, MyCoy Tyner, Michael Brecker, Terence Blanchard, Branford and Wynton Marsalis, Wayne Shorter, Savion Glover, Bill Cosby and many others, as well as todays up and coming artist like Esperanza Spalding, Jane Monheit, Taylor Eigsti, Julian Lage, Stacie Orrico and so on.
His current list of performing groups are “James Farm” with Joshua Redman, “Prism” with Dave Holland and Kevin Eubanks, “Sangam” with Charles Lloyd and Zakir Hussain, “Charles Lloyd New Quartet”, “Overtone” with Dave Holland, Jason Moran, Chris Potter and “Voyager” Eric’s own widely recognized group. But Eric doesn’t stop there, he also manages to fit in many collaborations with world renowned artist like Les Claypool “Primus”, “Dispatch” the band, John Mayer, Spike Lee, Mariah Carey, Randy Jackson from “American Idol” and etc.
Through Harland’s extensive travels, he has come to realize that «The deepest secret is that life is not a process of discovery, but a process of creation.» When Eric Harland contributes… his intention is therefore to create the highest musical experience so that every listener may have insight… into the musical moment.
Gerald Clayton, piano
Gerald Clayton searches for honest expression in every note he plays. With harmonic curiosity and critical awareness, he develops musical narratives that unfold as a result of both deliberate searching and chance uncovering. The four-time GRAMMY-nominated pianist/composer formally began his musical journey at the prestigious Los Angeles County High School for the Arts, where he received the 2002 Presidential Scholar of the Arts Award. Continuing his scholarly pursuits, he earned a Bachelor of Arts in Piano Performance at USC’s Thornton School of Music under the instruction of piano icon Billy Childs, after a year of intensive study with NEA Jazz Master Kenny Barron at The Manhattan School of Music. Clayton won second place in the 2006 Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz Piano Competition.
Expansion has become part of Clayton’s artistic identity. His music is a celebration of the inherent differences in musical perspectives that promote true artistic synergy. Inclusive sensibilities have allowed him to perform and record with such distinctive artists as Diana Krall, Roy Hargrove, Dianne Reeves, Ambrose Akinmusire, Dayna Stephens, Kendrick Scott, John Scofield Ben Williams, Terell Stafford & Dick Oatts, Michael Rodriguez, Terri Lyne Carrington, Avishai Cohen, Peter Bernstein and the Clayton Brothers Quintet. Clayton also has enjoyed an extended association since early 2013, touring and recording with saxophone legend Charles Lloyd.
Clayton’s discography as a leader reflects his evolution as an artist. His debut recording, Two Shade (ArtistShare), earned a 2010 GRAMMY nomination for Best Improvised Jazz Solo for his arrangement of Cole Porter’s “All of You.” “Battle Circle,” his composition featured on The Clayton Brothers’ recording The New Song and Dance (ArtistShare), received a GRAMMY nomination for Best Jazz Instrumental Composition in 2011. He received 2012 and 2013 GRAMMY nominations for Best Jazz Instrumental Album for Bond: The Paris Sessions (Concord) and Life Forum (Concord), his second and third album releases.
Capturing the truth in each moment’s conception of sound comes naturally to Clayton. The son of beloved bass player and composer John Clayton, he enjoyed a familial apprenticeship from an early age. Clayton honors the legacy of his father and all his musical ancestors through a commitment to artistic exploration, innovation, and reinvention.
Reuben Rogers, double bass
Imbued with both groove and spirit from birth, Reuben Rogers combined the calypso and reggae rhythms of his native Virgin Islands with the gospel sounds of the church and the freedom and improvisation of jazz to create the unique chemistry that would make him one of the most distinctive and in-demand bassists in modern jazz. Rogers’ versatile mastery of both the acoustic and electric bass has led to opportunities on stages around the world alongside some of the music’s most renowned artists, including Charles Lloyd, Wynton Marsalis, Joshua Redman, Tomasz Stanko, Roy Hargrove, Marcus Roberts, Nicholas Payton, Mulgrew Miller, Jackie McLean and Dianne Reeves, among many others.
Whether laying down a window-rattling groove, painting lush harmonic colors or whispering with delicate lyricism, Rogers’s passion and singular voice shine through in any setting. While he’s constantly adapting his always- recognizable voice to new settings, styles and challenges, Rogers’ career is remarkable for the longevity of many of his artistic relationships. He maintains musical partnerships reaching back to his earliest mentors, and enjoys rewarding long- term collaborations with several other artists, including notable tenures with Joshua Redman, Charles Lloyd and the Aaron Goldberg Trio that have lasted for a decade or more. Over the last two decades, he’s been featured on more than 100 recordings (including his sole release as a leader, the 2006 all-star session The Things I Am) and countless international tours.
That blend of long-lasting relationships with novel encounters has led to an entrancing richness in Rogers’ playing, an evolution that is the extraordinary result of deep exploration combined with fresh surprises. Born in 1974, Rogers was always drawn to music and dabbled with the clarinet, piano, drums and guitar before discovering his true passion in the bass. He was introduced to jazz by saxophonist Ron Blake and drummer Dion Parson, with both of whom Rogers continues to work in the Afro-Caribbean tinged 21st Century Band, and studied at the prestigious Berklee College of Music. Around the world, Rogers continues to give back with educational opportunities, leading workshops, clinics, private lessons and master classes to encourage the next generation of jazz musicians.
Julian Lage, guitar
Sounding Point Award-winning guitarist Julian Lage has been widely acclaimed as one of the most prodigious guitarists of his generation. The New York-based musician boasts a long resumé as a desired sideman with artists as diverse as Gary Burton, Taylor Eigsti, John Zorn, Nels Cline, Chris Eldridge, Eric Harland, and Fred Hersch, to name just a few. Equally important is his reputation as a soloist and bandleader. He is equally versed in jazz, classical, pop, and show tunes, and has spent more than a decade searching through the myriad strains of American musical history via an impeccable technique and a gift for freely associating between styles, tempos, keys, and textures that adds to his limitless improvisational spirit. Sounding Point, his 2009 debut album for Emarcy, featuring Bela Fleck and Chris Thile among his sidemen, was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Jazz Album. For Room, his Mack Avenue debut in 2014, he recorded as a duo with Cline, revealing the depth of their respect and camaraderie. It proved so successful that Lage joined Cline’s group for the landmark Lovers in 2016, the same year his own Arclight was released. On the latter, Lage played a Telecaster – a guitar not normally associated with jazz – in a program of modern originals and pre-bop covers with bassist Scott Colley and drummer Kenny Wollesen. He brought the lineup back together for 2018’s acclaimed Modern Lore, the same year he worked with Cline’s quartet for the Grammy-nominated Currents, Constellations.
Charles Lloyd, Saxophone
Eric Harland, drums
Gerald Clayton, piano
Reuben Rogers, double bass
Organizer: National Theater and Concert Hall
Designated accommodation: Silks Hotels
◎Approx. 90 minutes without intermission.
◎The program is subject to change
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