Jazz saxophonist and composer Dave Le Febvre (pronounced "Le Fay" in the US) has performed throughout California, Europe and Japan for the past 25 years. Dave has performed with many notable artists and ensembles, including The Don Ellis Orchestra, The Don Piestrup Big Band, Joe Williams, Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons, The Temptations, The Four Tops, Wayne Newton, and Robert Goulet, and has appeared at many local jazz festivals such as the Concord Jazz Festival, Berkeley Jazz Festival, Napa Valley Jazz Festival, San Jose Jazz Festival, Concerts at the Museum (Los Angeles) and as a headliner at the Fete de la Musique in Auxerre, France. Dave performs on soprano, alto and tenor saxophones, flute, clarinet and EWI.
As a jazz educator, Dave has taught at UC Berkeley, The Jazzschool, Cal State Maritime, the Jamey Aebersold Clinics, and the San Jose Jazz Camp. He has adjudicated many collegiate and high school jazz festivals throughout the San Francisco Bay Area, and has appeared as guest soloist and clinician in the Bay Area, Japan and France.
Dave Le Febvre has composed and arranged over one hundred original compositions for big band and more than two hundred compositions and arrangements for small ensembles. His works have been performed by Freddie Hubbard, Richie Cole, The BBC Big Band and many others in jazz festivals throughout the world. His experience with groups like The Don Piestrup Big Band and The Don Ellis Orchestra early in his career helped to inspire a creative and ever-evolving approach toward jazz exploration. Whether his music is labeled "fusion" or "straight-ahead", it is always based on a rhythmically intriguing and intensely rich melodic and harmonic concept.
Dave's new CD release, From Soul to Soul, features original straight-ahead and Latin jazz compositions performed by his quintet. Dave performs on tenor saxophone and EWI with Jean Michel Huré on guitar, Murray Low on piano, Dan Feiszli on bass and Curt Moore on drums.
From Soul to Soul Song info
The title track of this recording, “From Soul to Soul”, is dedicated to the late Michael Brecker. His amazing career unfolded in front me like a master class on playing the saxophone, the EWI, and on jazz composition. This song is a heartfelt thank you to Michael (albeit late) for all of the inspiration given to many players like myself who followed him throughout the years. While I have also been inspired by players like Joe Henderson, Sonny Rollins, Stan Getz and many others, I found Michael to be searching for something new and willing to try new things to further the limits of the saxophone while pushing the boundaries of jazz as an art form.
1) The Introduction is played on the EWI. This is an instrument I first heard Tom Scott play back in the 70’s and fell in love with it (he played the Lyricon). Michael Brecker took the EWI to a whole new level in his live performances during the 80’s and 90’s. EWIs became affordable in the 80’s and I started doing some recordings back then and had a lot of fun enjoying the new “double” as I was playing a lot of flute and clarinet in those days as well. Percussionist Michelle Goerlitz did a great job on this improvised duet.
2) “From Soul to Soul” was a song I had written a while back that has evolved into this very energetic driving tune that I associate with much of Michael Brecker’s music.
3) The composition “A Nordic Tale” was inspired by a story I read to my daughter when she was young. Although the story was light and fun, the thought of trying to capture the feel of a Nordic winter was an interesting musical challenge. This tune reminds me a lot of early Jan Garbarek and Kenny Wheeler, who are two of my favorites. The meter is in a 15-beat pattern, 4443.
4) The next song was inspired by Weather Report, and is dedicated to my late friend Claude Matringe. Claude played bass on several of our tours in France. He had a great sense of humor and was an excellent musician. He is sorely missed. I named this song “Hybrid” as it was originally written as a Latin tune with a Jaco Pastorius kind of groove. As we played this tune on gigs, it took on a funky groove and even a straight-ahead walking four at one point in the solo section! Thus you have a tune that qualifies as a Hybrid. Michelle did a great job on congas this time. When composing this tune this tune it came pretty quickly to me as they sometimes do. But the intro was written much later--after I had written about fifteen different versions, I finally found one I liked!
5) “Hope” is a ballad about feeling pretty down, but trying to maintain that last thread of hope and optimism that things will improve.
6) “41st Street” is a musical portrait of the street I lived on for many years in Oakland, California. Although parts of Oakland can be pretty rough, this area called “The Little Apple” is really great. There are a lot of wonderful people and shops in a great neighborhood, and I enjoyed living there a great deal. The meter here is an 11-beat cycle, 3332.
7) “A Bientôt” is a tune I wrote for Jean Michel Hure, one of my closest friends both on and off stage. He has lived both here in the Bay Area as well as in France over the last 15 years, so we are not always able to sing the blues in the same country! We have known each other since the late 80’s when bassist and jazz fake book publisher Chuck Sher introduced us. We have toured France with some great French musicians and done many recording sessions together. We have many stories to tell! Jean Michel is a great friend and as you will hear, a great guitarist.
8) Our last tune, “Mr. JB”, is dedicated to my late friend Cary Griffin. He played drums in many of my groups for over 15 years. He was very bright and dangerously funny. Years ago Cary decided to earn a living in the business world. He was very competent at what he did, but did not seem to take the business world too seriously. His love was for his family, and in his spare time, his music. He would often make fun of businessmen and call them “Mr. Jet Businessman”, and would do an impression of Mr. Nice Guy turning into Mr. Jet Businessman. Cary was a great person and a great friend, and I miss him a lot.
Once again I’d like to thank Jean Michel Hure, Murray Low, Dan Feiszli, Curt Moore and Michelle Goerlitz for making this recording a lot of fun, and for their creative input. I hope you enjoy listening to the CD! Dave