All Music Guide To Jazz, 2nd Edition 1996 p. 240 One For Newk, KOCH Jazz by Scott Yanow “This is a record that all lovers of bebop have to get, Bruce Eskovitz has a fat tone and a hard- driving style that is most reminiscent of Don Menza and Lew Tabackin, making him a perfect person to record a tribute to Sonny Rollins. If he sounded exactly like Newk this set would not be all that effective since there is no reason to hear an imitation when the original is also quite prominent on records. But by paying homage to Rollins without directly copying him, Eskovitz has put together a very enjoyable set. With the exception of “Poor Butterfly” and “Count Your Blessings”, all ten numbers are Rollins compositions. Eskovitz is greatly assisted by pianist Bill Mays, vibraphonist Charlie Shoemake, bassist Ray Drummond, and drummer Larance Marable on such numbers as “No Moe,” “Airegin,” ”Valse Hot,” “Strode Rode,” and “Pent-Up House.” As intense as some of the jam session-style performances are, it is the final number that is the most passionate, for “Tenor Madness” is a ten-minute blowout with guest Ernie Watts challenging (but not overwhelming) Eskovitz. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.
Jazz Composer/Saxophonist, Dr. Bruce Eskovitz was eleven years old when he fell in love with the sound of the tenor saxophone, and by the age of thirteen had begun his professional playing career. While other Southern California teenagers tuned in to rock n' roll, Bruce hung out with Sonny Rollins, John Coltrane, and Stan Getz records until he could play their sound. By the age of twenty, Bruce was composing music for "The Merv Griffin Show." He remembers handing Plas Johnson and Ray Brown his tunes and was encouraged by their positive reaction.
Today Bruce resides in Culver City, CA and has just finished producing his fifth jazz album, Regions, performed by the Bruce Eskovitz Jazz Orchestra (BEJO), an exciting nine-piece ensemble featuring some of the best jazz musicians in Los Angeles. Previous albums include: Bruce Eskovitz/Bill Mays, Conversations (Azica), One for Newk (KOCH Jazz), a tribute to Sonny Rollins which received a 5 star rating in The All Music Guide to Jazz (www.allmusicguide.com). One For Newk features some of the most respected musicians in the jazz arena today: Bill Mays on piano, Ray Drummond on bass, Larance Marable on drums, Charlie Shoemake on vibes, and a guest appearance by saxophone great Ernie Watts on the classic "Tenor Madness". Bruce Eskovitz is in demand as a jazz artist on the L.A. jazz club scene where he appears regularly at Catalina Bar and Grill, Jax Bar and Grill, The Santa Barbara Jazz Festival, California 66, Beverly Hills Affaire in the Garden, The Jazz Spot, Lunaria, The Atlas Bar and Grill, St. Mark's Club, and Cava.
Bruce has performed and recorded with many great and diverse artists, including Natalie Cole, Freddie Hubbard, Doc Severinsen, Joe Williams, Rosemary Clooney, Jimmy Webb, Bill Watrous, Elliot Smith, Dwight Yoakum, Jane Monheit, The Fifth Dimension, Rita Moreno, Jack Jones, Bobby Vinton, Shari Lewis, Ernie Watts and many other celebrities. He plays soprano, alto and tenor saxophones, flutes and clarinets. Some of his other compositional and performance credentials include the Los Angeles productions of "Beatlemania" and "Timbuktu," countless records and jingles, The John Davidson Show, The Danny Gans Show, The Ebony/Jet Celebrity Showcase, the ABC TV show Santa Barbara, Ollie Mitchell's Sunday Band, Frank Capp’s Juggernaut, and "The New American Orchestra."
Bruce holds a Bachelors of Arts degree in Music from California State University, Northridge, and a Masters degree in Jazz Studies from the University of Southern California, and a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Southern California in jazz composition.
Bruce Eskovitz and the Bruce Eskovitz Jazz Orchestra (BEJO) are available for jazz festivals, movie/TV soundtracks, records, concerts, club dates, college appearances, and clinics.