The Len Paterson Trio is eclectic groove music that strikes a unique chord in the heart of the listener. They play with passionate abandon their own mesmerizing blend of strangely moving, oddly charming, music for a new universe.
Guitarist, Len Paterson, and bassist, Ellen Schoenwetter have been playing together in various incarnations in the San Francisco Bay Area for many years. During that time, they have explored the vast musical terrain that has made the local scene so rich and diverse, playing jazz, blues, r&b, world, and rock as well as improv avant-garde. The current trio with Jan Jackson on drums has played to enthusiastic audiences at local clubs and large outdoor events in Northern California.
The group benefits from the varied backgrounds of each member. Len and Ellen spent several years performing with multi-instrumentalist, Ralph Carney(of Tom Waits). Len is a frequent sub and guest in the popular Miles Davis tribute band, Bitches Brew, and ex- Jr.Walker organist Jackie Ivory's quartet.Len recently made JamBase's 10 best guitarists of 2001 list and Derk Richardson writes in the East Bay Express that "Paterson should be ranked with the Bay Area's best and most inventive." He has also collaborated with Malcom Mooney (of Can), Henry Kaiser, Beth Custer, Splatter Trio, was a founding member of Pluto, composed music for film,and can be heard in collaboration with David Slusser on John Zorn's Tzadik label.
Ellen has toured Europe with the rock band Assassins of God., played for several years with local be-bop legend, Bishop Norman Williams, was also a founding member of Pluto and freelances with many local musicians.
Drummer, Jan Jackson rounds out the group with his refined sense of the groove. He currently also works with Verve recording artist, Will Bernard and local composer, vocalist, clarinet-virtuoso, Beth Custer. He has even backed up Chuck Berry.
The following review is from www.pauserecord.com Nov. 8 CD.s of the week;
LEN PATERSON TRIO, "SUNNY
CLOUDY" (Len Paterson) - A Bay
Area guitarist who is obviously
steeped in the tradition of Grant
Green and Wes Montgomery, Len
Paterson has made a fine jazz /
acid jazz debut with "Sunny Cloudy." Paterson's
chords and notes are played clean, with a
minimum of effects or processing, while the
rhythm section, which consists of his partner,
Ellen Schoenwetter on bass and Jan Jackson
(Will Bernard & Motherbug, The Coup) on
drums, swing mightily no matter what tempo
they choose. The band may have been
influenced by Green and Montgomery, for
example, but they are not simply recreating their
sound. Rather, Paterson introduces other
elements from music at times, such as the
African rhythms in the title track, the restless,
angular grooves of "Joviality," the loping,
feel of "Attitude Is Everything," and the Latin
rhythms of "The Nomad," reveal Paterson and
company to be painting from a large conceptual
palette. As good a guitarist as he is, most
people will not want to look to his hands for
fingering ideas; Paterson is left-handed, and
taught himself to play on a regular guitar, so
everything is upside down. Upside down or not,
this is a very tasty collection of music. INFO