Red Raspus Music

Home of Musician and Educator David Marriott, Jr.

David Marriott, Jr. is a jazz trombonist, composer/arranger, educator, and blogger. A two-time Earshot Jazz Golden Ear Award recipient and winner of the 1999 National Jazz Trombone Competition, David is active in a variety of Seattle jazz groups, including the Seattle Repertory Jazz Orchestra, Zubatto Syndicate and his own critically-acclaimed groups Septology and Triskaidekaband.

Wayne Horvitz and NY Composers Orchestra West at The Triple Door

I didn't think I'd be able to attend much of the 2009 Earshot Jazz Festival as I've been completely tied up with The Drowsy Chaperone at The 5th Avenue, but with my Monday night free, and my brother in the band, I decided to check out Wayne Horvitz and NY Composers Orchestra West at The Triple Door. While I did bring my camera, I sadly didn't bring anything for note taking, so I missed getting the titles, but to be honest, it's not important. What was important about this concert was the music of composer and keyboardist Wayne Horvitz. I used to go see his band Zony Mash at the OK Hotel and revelled in the groove, but always remembered seeing a similar incarnation of tonight's band around ten years ago. My tastes have certainly broadened since then, and with a focus on Wayne's writing this time, I was even more taken with it.  It truly was an all-star band:

Trumpets: Brad Allison, Ron Miles, Thomas Marriott

French Horn: Tom Varner

Trombones: Chris Stover, Nelson Bell

Saxophones: Mark Taylor, Skerik, Briggan Krauss, Hans Teuber, Jim De Joie, Doug Wieselman

Guitar: Tim Young

Drums and Percussion: Bobby Previte

Bass: Phil Sparks

Piano and Conductor: Wayne Horvitz, Robin Holcomb

The music was largely composed with sparse moments for improvisation, although there were a few extended solos -- generally by the saxophonists or Wayne. I found that the program truly reflected the seeming dual musical personalities of Wayne Horvitz: on one side, a deep love of groove, blues, and a fun-loving jam; on the other, a deep compositional complexity that understands the bigger ideas of drama, counterpoint, density, and development. Added to all this comes the icing of improvisation, usually in the context in simple harmonies or free open sections. For the most part, I would use words like "progressive" or "experimental" to describe the music, but I also took away the feeling of "energy" and "freedom" from the music as well. The epic "River of Whiskey" was a highlight, as was the sheer energy of Briggan Krauss during his one solo of the night. But it's hard to pick a highlight at all, because the improvisation really served the compositions -- a concept strangely lacking in much of jazz music today. Hopefully, it also reminded the listening public that the big band is not dead, it's just rare to hear something new. Well, we did tonight. Enjoy the slideshow!