LALE NENADOVIC TRIO
The Jazz Enterprise Live at the 5 Spot, NYC.
The goal of this CD is to revive the past by remixing the original DAT tapes of my Trio, featuring Jonathan Davis on the piano, and Chris Berger on the acoustic bass, with an addition of a guest on tenor saxophone during the second set of the concert.
The intention of the band was to participate spontaneously and creatively in this live recording session.
The atmosphere, entirely recorded live, was very spontaneous and free spirited.
INTERACTION - COUNTERPOINT - INTERPLAY
During the recording session we were completely committed to the music we performed.
The songs featured on this double CD were not previously rehearsed among the three of us, although we have all played with each other many times during my tenure as band leader of the prominent NYC jazz club La Folie , in the early 90's.
Chris Berger (Acoustic bass) was introduced to me by Charles Blenzig, pianist and music director of Michael Franks' band, and with whom I played in the late eighties, and throughout the 90's at many NYC venues , including The Blue Note.
I have asked Jon Davis and Chris to join me, together with Pete Brainin, a great NYC tenor and soprano sax player, for this performance as a straight ahead jazz trio / quartet.
Chris and I have worked together for along time before this gig, on and off either as part of other bands at NYC's Small's jazz club, or my own band, within a trio, or larger band formats, at various gigs and sessions throughout town, we got accustomed to each other's style, enjoyed the interplay, and formed a solid groove.
Jonathan Davis , (Acoustic piano) aka "Peaches" was brought to the band courtesy of my good friend David Kikoski, a truly phenomenal pianist, composer, and keyboard player whom I have worked with , on and off for a while in NYC.
Long time before this concert I needed a pianist for a gig at a small venue on Second Avenue in Manhattan, and decided to give Jon a call.
At first, once I discovered more about his impressive musical resume, I felt a bit intimidated by the fact that such a great, acclaimed piano player, has accepted to work with me solely based on the recommendation of a mutual friend, with whom we both have often played, but again never at the same time...I was primarily worried if I was technically going to be able to match his virtuosity, and advanced level of playing, which was understandable considering Jon's career...professor of jazz , improvisation and harmony at the renowned and respected Manne's School of Music in Manhattan, and pianist with Jaco Pastorius' Trio in the 80's., among other accolades and achievements.
In the end we "clicked" smoothly, and started working together steadily. Jon Davis became the foundation of The Jazz Enterprise Trio, and took upon the same role as Charles Blenzig, and later on Kenny Wessell (of the Ornette Coleman Prime Time Band ) had in my guitar trio.
Lale Nenadovic (Drums and percussion)
My goal at that time was to become a performer devoted more to music, than to his instrument, and I believe that this characteristic, more than any other, has been accurately expressed on this recording. My percussive technical lexicon, and capability to immerse into varied and extreme musical styles, have been inspired, and pushed to the limits by Jon, Chris , and Pete, like never before, during this live recording session.
EXPLORATION - SYNERGY - FLEXIBILITY
During this session we decided that serving the music would be our main goal...and were not much concerned with anything else. We tried to play the repertoire our way, only thinking of music.
Listen carefully how Jon's spirited, immaculately phrased solos gave the group a relaxed swinging groove, in addition to the beautifully accented and sustained blues phrases.
It is easy to develop a good rapport with artists and to understand what it is exactly that they're looking for, if it's only about the music. You have to understand what the song requires, and not what people want to hear. There are many things to take into consideration once confronted with a live recording session, namely, to timely gauge each others attitude and mood, whether it being receptive or competitive, and try to communicate immediately, spontaneously, opening up completely, listening to each others phrases, trying to understand counterpoints, and predict the ones following immediately.
I decided to finalize work on this audio material, once I realized I owe it to my past to release this recording and honor at least a few of the many fine musicians I had the privilege, honor and pleasure to work with during my tenure as music director of The La Folie Jazz club in NYC, during the 90's.
All of the above mentioned is the reason that the concept of this CD is rather different...a live, spontaneous, jazz documentary... but also one difficult to achieve.
When I played this session with Jon and Chris I truly believed in it.
At that moment it meant everything to me.
We did it organically, somewhat improvised, on the verge of instinctive, and were totally confident, although at the same time, a bit uncertain of what the recording will sound like, once the tape stops rolling.
My leadership skills were developed while working as a session drummer and band leader in NYC in the late eighties and throughout the nineties and i think have have logically resulted with the release of this double CD:"Jazz Enterprise Live at The 5 Spot" (recorded in 1995, and released in 1998), which featured a brilliant pianist, Jonathan Davis, and an excellent tenor sax player Pete Brainin.
I have learned and experienced firsthand the difference between being a band leader and a hired musician.
As a leader you have to know exactly how the music should sound, and you need to know how to communicate this with the musicians, taking responsibility to offer direction or let them loose to play whatever they feel. It all depends on how you've imagined it to sound. It can be a big responsibility.
I wanted to record this CD in order to realize my ideas, and follow up on the previous one with a different kind of band, with more aggressive, free spirited, spontaneous arrangements. Above all my goal was to document the kind music that was representative of my personality at that time in New York, because beneath it all it's a revelation of your musical character, mentality, and integrity.
While we were recording that night, I felt that the majority of the crowd who decided to stay for the late night session, was capable of recognizing my melodic approach to playing percussion.
Discmakers, from New Jersey, a crew of extremely talented sound engineers, and post production specialists, took upon the task of remixing and mastering this recording.
Their role, support, and dedication were crucial in finalizing this project.
Working on mixing and mastering these tapes, in collaboration with Discmakers and (...), definitely helped me recover my focus and revitalize my enthusiasm for upcoming music projects.
Jon Davis, Chris Berger, and Pete Brainin truly shine on this CD, and I am extremely grateful for their immense contribution.
It is great playing with people who are also your friends, it adds a certain comfort, which in turns allows you to express your ideas easier, knowing you won't be misunderstood, or misinterpreted. The interaction becomes more intense and energetic, but at the same time calm and steady, which is hard to achieve if you play with people you don't know well.
Upon completion of this CD I'd like to spend some time thinking about my future projects which will move the music exploration of The Jazz Enterprise, after a "leave of absence", from New York elsewhere, (to be advised shortly).
Lale Nenadovic , on behalf of the The Jazz Enterprise, and all the wonderful, talented musicians i have played with in New York City.