So as the song says: a change is coming, now there's something to live by !! The more things change the more they stay the same? Personally I love changes, errr chord changes etc. Now in Jazz presentation there is a trending change to composition and formal expansion. It reminds me of the late 60's where themes both musical and lyrical were expanded upon and planned out with some message (always a goodly and well intended message). My favorite band of that era The Collectors Was the first rock band to write an extended form into a suite with a common theme running through it "What Love Suite" still moves me.
OK, now what with the virtual tone poems of Medeski Scofield Martin & Wood and what I heard today at Churchill Square: the Myriad3, the trend has got wheels. So the nitty gritty is this Myriad3 has taken composition with a piano trio format and expanded it into a symphony of jazz.. and that's no understatement. Chris Donnelly the pianist I know from his blog; the other two are equal partners in this musical venture. All three (Ernesto Cervini drums and composition, and Dan Fortin bass and composition). This band should be attended by audiences of thousands, but here we were out less that 50 people listening) in the sun this morning eating our lunch and having a beer while this group performed their mighty works. The compositions (with no music in sight) were flawlessly performed resonating with feeling verve and drive and expressive technique in massive proportions.. I'm not kidding. The pieces of each band member were featured with the same commitment and ability. These pieces all had their passionate points to make and all were beautiful, captivating, and performed with what might be called extreme commitment and feeling. Chris Donnelly is an astounding performer with obvious classical roots who has studied a lot of jazz. They all had chops but in Chris Donnelly's case I would call what he has 'transcendental technique' and a relaxed but riveted concentration. It was truly humbling for this writer folks. Any induced humility was soon dissipated because the music took over and kind of enlarged my own concentration as I (and anyone else listening) tried to absorb what was happening, what with layers and surges and hippiness (is that valid?.. I think so..) it was a lot more than clever I'll tell you that !! What can I say..? Buy these worthy guys..go to hear them when ever you can..they are pretty special and if this is indeed a trend, then bring it ON !! They are on iTunes etc. And all the usual places.
Now I did shake the right hand of the piano man, but didn't get a chance to talk to the other two and well, I should have tried harder because they are an obviously equal group and they certainly seem to belong in it. It was a great show..The sound man gave them a standing ovation (me too).