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Live Reviews

B.C. All-Stars: The Jodi Proznick Quartet, and the Brad Turner Quartet with Phil Dwyer

By Published: May 20, 2009
The show closed with "Underdog," a fast piece where Turner's trumpet would be playing high while Dwyer's sax played low, opposite echoes of each other, and then reverse. It was enhanced by Hubert's fast piano and Van der Schyff's interesting clicking effect on the drums which then morphed into a flurry on cymbals. The trumpet/sax contest continued almost until the end, when everything slowed and the last few notes echoed from the piano.

If you listened carefully, each of Turner's songs had a theme and a shape and a motif, but it wasn't necessarily in a conventional form. The songs gave an opportunity for all five musicians to shine and to complement each other. This was appreciated by the audience, which gave them an extended ovation.

The concert was one of a sprinkling of jazz events in B.C. Scene, an extensive celebration of the performing arts from the province of British Columbia, sponsored by National Arts Centre in Canada's capital. Each year the NAC focuses on a different region of Canada for this festival.

But one thing I didn't hear evidence of in the concert was a specific B.C. or Vancouver "sound". Each quartet was true to itself, and to how they'd played before in concert and on CD, but they didn't share a specific "West Coast" vibe. This is not surprising given that most of them had previously lived or studied in Quebec or Ontario, and they all have played across the country. The "B.C." label was for marketing; the music was for listening.

Photo Credit

John Fowler

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