"You’ve got to love an album of “traditional folk music from an imaginary place,” which is what Josh Deutsch’s Pannonia delivers on Another Time, Another Place. This well-planned, beautifully executed program draws on influences from practically everywhere. Deutsch seems to be obsessive on details, and he’s hell-bent on making music that’s just a little (or perhaps a lot) different than what you’ve heard before. Deutsch has written a set of 10 songs that seem to serve as the soundtrack to a movie script yet to be written. And he starts with excellent source material. Prior to recording the album, Deutsch had gone back and reread one of his favorite books, Tom Robbins’ 1984 novel Jitterbug Perfume. Five of the tunes on this recording were inspired by the book, including the driving “Bingo’s Bees” and the intensely beautiful “K23.” In creating this world, Deutsch shows incredible humor, too, especially on “Serious Beets,” a tune he calls the Pannonian drinking song. The song is a hoot, with bassist Gary Wang bowing as if he were stumbling down a Pannonian boulevard. Of the other five tunes, two are part of what Deutsch calls an “unusual modes of transportation suite.” “Dirigible” and “Funicular” are both terrific. The other three tunes provide great opportunities for the band to stretch out. My favorite of these is “Kék Szín,” which is Hungarian for “blues.” It’s a great, toe-tapping wonder of Eastern European soul that highlights this fascinating band—Deutsch on trumpet, Zach Brock on violin, Brian Drye on trombone, Wang on bass and Ronen Itzik playing ridiculously fine percussion. Even here, Deutsch and company prove to be fantastic storytellers. The solos are superb, and Deutsch makes great use of off-mic instruments soloing, almost as if to offer the audience a stage whisper about what’s happening in the studio. Odd meters, unusual instrumentation, deep compositions, a clearly drawn fantasy world: That’s Pannonia. That’s Josh Deutsch."
- Frank Alkyer, Downbeat Magazine. Editor's pick Jan. 2014
ABOUT JOSH DEUTSCH
Trumpeter/composer Josh Deutsch has established himself as a versatile and unique voice on New York City’s contemporary music scene. where he performs regularly as a leader and sideman and is a founding member of the Queens Jazz Overground, a collective dedicated to making the borough where he resides a destination for live improvised music. He is also known nationally and internationally through performances around the U.S. and in Europe, Canada and Asia.
In addition to his work with Pannonia, Deutsch also performs in a duo with guitarist Nico Soffiato that has toured extensively in Italy and the U.S. Guitar International hailed their recording Time Gels (2011) as “an elegant, fresh take on the timeless (duo) tradition” and praised the duo’s ability to “perform as a cohesive unit with improvisational vigor and mature musicianship.” Deutsch and Soffiato host 2x3, a nomadic concert series in which they are joined by two other duo projects each evening, highlighting each duo project alone before ending in spontaneous inter-duo collaborations.
The trumpeter plays regularly and has recorded with Argentinian singer/composer Sofia Rei Koutsovitis, Pedro Giraudo’s Expansions Big Band, the Australian soul/funk band The Hipstones and Nathan Parker Smith’s Large Ensemble and has performed with Michael Bates’ Outside Sources and the Duke Ellington Big Band directed by Victor Goines. He has presented his own projects at Dave Douglas’s Festival of New Trumpet Music as well as at the Earshot Jazz Festival in Seattle and the Outpost Summer Music Festival in Albuquerque and has appeared at such leading venues in the U.S. as Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola, Birdland, The Blue Note, The Jazz Gallery and The Stone in New York City and Yoshi's in Oakland.
Deutsch writes music in multiple genres and his compositions and arrangements have been performed by artists ranging from the Seattle Symphony Orchestra and cellist Ruth Marshall to the Oregon Jazz Ensemble, Ron Miles and Danilo Pérez. He has received commissions from the NPR radio program “From The Top,” the Seattle Symphony Orchestra, Music Northwest and the Head-Royce School. In addition to having composed hundreds of pieces for various performing ensembles, Deutsch has also written several long-form pieces including “The Ligeti Project,” a 12-movement, cross-genre work for jazz septet that has been performed on both the East and West Coasts that is based loosely on Györgi Ligeti’s Musica Ricercata.
Deutsch is an active music educator with experience teaching students and ensembles at all levels and has appeared as a clinician and conducted master classes throughout the U.S. He was on the faculty of the Oregon Festival of American Music’s Summer Jazz Academy from 2007 through 2009 and of the University of Oregon Summer Jazz Camp from 2007 to the present. In 2008, he received the Excellence in Teaching Award from the University of Oregon for his work with large and small jazz ensembles and private improvisation students. He currently offers private instruction in trumpet, piano, improvisation, composition and music theory in New York City where he is on the faculty of the Queens College CPSM and a mentor in the Young Composer and Improviser Workshop.
A native of Seattle, Deutsch started playing piano and composing music at the age of five before discovering an affinity for the trumpet as a member of award-winning jazz bands at Washington Middle School and Garfield High School. He received a Bachelor's Degree in Jazz Studies from the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, where he studied with Danilo Pérez, Bob Brookmeyer, John McNeil, Allan Chase and composer Lee Hyla. A three-time participant at the Banff International Jazz Workshop, Deutsch worked closely there with Bill Frisell, Dave Douglas and Kenny Werner among others. In 2006, he was awarded a Graduate Teaching Fellowship from the University of Oregon from which he received a Masters of Music in Jazz Performance and Composition in 2009. He won the Reno International Jazz Festival’s Outstanding College Trumpeter award in 2008 and 2009 and is also a winner of a Downbeat Student Music Award as a College Jazz Soloist in 2008.