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Album Review

Trumpeter Dave Douglas' unusual string group (which also includes violinist Mark Feldman, cellist Erik Friedlander, bassist Drew Gross and drummer Michael Sarin) is reminiscent in some ways of Ornette Coleman's free-jazz quartet despite not playing any of Ornette's originals and having a very different instrumentation. All of the musicians function as equals, the interaction is often intuitive, and the improvising on eight Douglas originals (including tunes dedicated to Steve Lacy, Wayne Shorter, Mark Dresser, Woody Shaw, John Cage and John Zorn), Thelonious Monk's "Who Knows," and Rahsaan Roland Kirk's "The Inflated Tear" is on a high level. Well worth exploring.


Born: March 24, 1963 in Montclair, NJ

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Dave Douglas arguably became the most original trumpeter/composer of his generation. Douglas' stylistic range is broad yet unaffected; his music is not a pastiche, but rather a personal aesthetic that reflects a wide variety of interests. He explicitly cites such diverse influences as Igor Stravinsky, Stevie Wonder, and John Coltrane. As a composer, Douglas adapts and synthesizes unusual forms and creates his own out of disparate elements. As a trumpeter, he possesses a comprehensive jazz technique;...
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Five, Dave Douglas
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