Recording with this group was one of the easiest record dates I have ever done.
I met Brad in 2009 when he invited me to take part in a tribute to Lester Young’s 100th birthday at Small’s Jazz Club in New York. Over the next couple years Brad lined up some very enjoyable quartet gigs for us in New York for which he had to commute from Washington, D.C. So in June of this year I went to Washington to do a weekend of gigs with him in the D.C. area. This record date took place on the Monday after those gigs. So that weekend was the first time I had played with all the other musicians on this date and we hit it off so well it was really amazing.
First of all the rhythm section of Dan Roberts on piano, Tom Baldwin on bass and Tony Martucci on drums is so comfortable to play with it just fits like a glove...a great sense of time and swing.
And the level of melodic improvisation by Brad on tenor, Dan on piano and Michael Kramer on guitar is very refreshing to my ears. Very creative, honest and swinging...no gimmicks. It is so great to hear younger players with such a strong interest in this music.
We had no rehearsal before going into the studio. The solo order and decisions
about improvising together or trading with the rhythm section were worked out as each tune came up. And we did the whole date in 4 hours.
And that is how you make a swinging jazz record!!
September 9, 2012
New York City
Ted improvises effortlessly and organically, creating new lines each time and never fails to swing.
I was introduced to Ted Brown and the Tristano School by pianist Ed Paolantonio during my studies at UNC Chapel Hill. Ed studied with Lennie and he opened my ears to the important recordings of Louis Armstrong, Charlie Christian, Lester Young, and to those of Lee Konitz, Warne Marsh, and Ted. The melodic improvisations, relaxed swing, and understated timbre of Ted and Warne on their recording "Jazz Of Two Cities" made a deep impression on me and revealed a way for me to assimilate my love for the Swing Era sound with an original modern jazz vocabulary.
The music was selected from the repertoire associated with Lester Young, Bird, and Lennie Tristano. We recorded two of Ted's most recent lines - an homage to Pres and one based on "I've Found A New Baby", Warne's line on "All of Me", Lee's take on Tristano's treatment of "Pennies From Heaven"(in minor), a Lester Young blues improvisation, and the standards "My Melancholy Baby" and "Body and Soul". Tchaikovsky's "Opus 42, Third Movement" was recorded by Warne and Ted in 1956 on the recording that also included "Smog Eyes".
As for the recording,Tom Baldwin and Tony Martucci are a stellar rhythm team and together they are the mainstays of my quartet with Sarah Hughes. Michael Kramer and Dan Roberts possess unique creativity and they complete the ideal group to support and inspire the two tenors.
Working with Ted is a dream-come-true for me. I am grateful for our friendship and for the time and history that he has shared and I look forward to making more music with one of my heroes. In the meantime, enjoy.
- Brad Linde
October 13, 2012 - Washington, D.C.