Dresser unveils new quintet May 10 at Dizzy's
Introducing new members Ben Schachter on saxophone and Kjell Nordeson on drums, Dresser, Joshua White and Michael Dessen pack a big punch.
Friday, May 10, contrabass master Mark Dresser will debut the latest version of his West Coast Quintet, which features new members tenor saxophonist Ben Schachter and drummer Kjell Nordeson alongside veterans pianist Joshua White and trombonist Michael Dessen.
I had been writing about music for about a year when I first encountered Dresser's quintet music -- to call it a revelation understates the experience. The bassist's music explores issues of timbre gradients and metric subdivision in ways that continue to boggle the mind, yet, for all of its inherent complexity from the standpoint of the players -- for the listener, surrendering yourself to it is easy and rewarding; the music is joyful, melodic and infused with flow.
"It's not like I was unhappy with my former quintet, at all," says Dresser. "It's just fun to check out new folks with this music. Changing personnel is like changing a recipe -- you really don't know what it is until it is cooked or in the case of a band, until it performs. The concert is as much about checking out the new band as well as the music itself."
Concerning Philadelphia transplant Schachter, Dresser says, "Every opportunity I've had to hear him play I've been impressed with his musicianship and obvious virtuosity. Nordeson is a very interesting drummer from Sweden who is attending UCSD to do graduate studies, but I've been aware of him before he came to town through his collaborations with noted European improvisers Matts Gustafsson, Barry Guy, Peter Brotzman and the American saxophonist Ken Vandermark.
"Also Joshua White on piano whom I continue to marvel at his musical invention and commitment, and Michael Dessen, who plays in my east coast quintet as well as our telematic collaborations between UCSD and UC Irvine."
Every time I've heard Dresser's quintet perform, I've had the feeling that, like the lucky cognoscenti gathered at the famed New York after-hours spot Minton's Playhouse in the mid-forties, where Charlie Parker, Thelonious Monk and others created be-bop -- that something new and incredibly important was being born.
Come to the new Dizzy's, located at 4275 Mission Bay Dr. to experience that feeling for yourself.
Photo by Anthony Cecena
More like this:
- The week in jazz 'round San Diego — Oct. 22, 2013
- The shape of jazz to come: Dresser Quintet at Dizzy's — May 11, 2013
- Best jazz concerts for 2012 — Dec. 21, 2012
- Top three jazz choices for Nov. 30 — Nov. 26, 2012
- Mark Dresser Quintet Comes To Dizzy's — May 26, 2011