All About Jazz

Home » Articles » Extended Analysis

Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

10

Hazel Leach: Free Range Music

Jack Bowers By

Sign in to view read count
Hazel Leach has had quite a musical career. After college, where she studied classical flute as well as jazz / pop saxophone, the Englishwoman spent a number of years as a freelance musician / arranger before moving to Holland in 1979. Six years later she was named lecturer in music at the Arnheim Conservatoire, and in 1992 she co-founded the United Women's Orchestra with friend and colleague Christina Fuchs. The UWO lasted until 2009, after which Leach (who meanwhile had spent time in the U.S. as curator of the Omni International Music Residency, guest lecturer at Harvard and Columbia universities, and artist-in-residence at the Berklee School of Music) relocated to Germany where in 2011 she formed the Composers' Orchestra Berlin. The suitably named Free Range Music is one of the early fruits of that endeavor.

About the COB, Leach writes, "The music written for the band would have no exclusion zones. The mandate would be to combine elements from all possible styles to create music that is truly 'free range,' and to have that music performed by imaginative and creative players." Mission accomplished. The music herein, much of which would be better described by other musicians, is both inclusive and unfettered—not to mention quite demanding, for players and listeners alike. It starts with one of Leach's two compositions, "Spinoff," a relatively sedate and melodic theme that brings to the fore Martin Klenk's deep-voiced cello and Meike Goosmann's mellow soprano sax. As everything here is thematic, based on events, impressions or emotions, Leach's second piece, "Postcard No. 1," she writes, is the first in a series "exploring the apparently inexhaustible rhythmic possibilities of the waltz." Well, "Postcard" may be in ¾ time (that's presumably a given) but it's a sure bet it wouldn't be miscounted for something a member of the Strauss family may have written, even though it does have an explicit waltz-like ambiance.

The other themes, each of which gives free rein to the composer's imagination, range from Oleg Hollmann's assertive "Synthadventures of a Spacehero" to Christian Korthals' graphic "Berlin," the second movement of a suite for big band. In between are Susanne Paul's seductive "Mata Hari," Alexander Tzschentke's audacious "Kleiner Stau," Strakhof's prismatic "Belphegor," Horst Nonnemacher's reverential "Oracao," Ruth Schepers' bellicose "Totales Tanzverbot" and Fee Stracke's freewheeling "Zamboni." While there are solos, this is by and large a composer's enterprise, with the ensemble showcased much of the way. As for the music, it is highly sophisticated, sometimes enigmatic and not designed for unschooled ears. It does, however, in Leach's words, "[display] the wonderfully broad and inspiring diversity of uniquely personal styles, with influences ranging from classical to jazz and from folk to free . . . truly Free Range music."

Track Listing: Spinoff; Synthadventures of a Spacehero; Mata Hari; Kleiner Stau; Belphegor; Oracao; Postcard No. 1; Totales Tanzverbot; Zamboni; Berlin.

Personnel: Hazel Leach: leader, flute (3, 8, 10); Aaron Schmidt-Wiegand: trumpet (2, 3, 5, 6, 9); Sebastian Piskorz: trumpet (1, 4, 5, 7, 8, 10); Abigail Sanders: horn (6); Ruth Schepers: alto, C melody sax, clarinet, flute; Meike Goosmann: soprano sax (1); Christian “Tian” Korthals: soprano, tenor sax; Edith Steyer: baritone, alto sax, clarinet (1, 4, 5, 7-10); Oleg Hollmann: baritone sax (2, 3); Nils Marquardt: trombone (1, 4, 5, 7-10); Philipp Domke: trombone (2, 3); Pauline Boeykens: tuba; Fee Stracke: piano; Alexander Tzschentke: guitar; Dirk Strakhof: bass (1, 2, 5, 9, 10); Horst Nonnemacher: bass (3, 4, 6-8); Lucia Martinez: drums, percussion; Daniel Friedrichs: violin; Philippe Perotto: violin; Katja Braun: viola; Susanne Paul: cello (2, 4-7, 9); Martin Klenk: cello (1, 3, 8, 10).

Title: Free Range Music | Year Released: 2014 | Record Label: JazzHausMusik

Tags

Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Read Trouble No More - The Bootleg Series Vol. 13 / 1979-1981 Extended Analysis
Trouble No More - The Bootleg Series Vol. 13 / 1979-1981
by Doug Collette
Published: November 19, 2017
Read Love, Gloom, Cash, Love Extended Analysis
Love, Gloom, Cash, Love
by Patrick Burnette
Published: October 21, 2017
Read Motel Shot: Expanded Edition Extended Analysis
Motel Shot: Expanded Edition
by Doug Collette
Published: July 16, 2017
Read Long Strange Trip: The Untold Story of the Grateful Dead Motion Picture Soundtrack Extended Analysis
Long Strange Trip: The Untold Story of the Grateful Dead...
by Doug Collette
Published: July 14, 2017
Read Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band 50th Anniversary Super Deluxe  Edition Extended Analysis
Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band 50th...
by Doug Collette
Published: May 27, 2017
Read Singles: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack - Deluxe Edition Extended Analysis
Singles: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack - Deluxe Edition
by Doug Collette
Published: May 20, 2017
Read "Love, Gloom, Cash, Love" Extended Analysis Love, Gloom, Cash, Love
by Patrick Burnette
Published: October 21, 2017
Read "Chick Corea: The Musician" Extended Analysis Chick Corea: The Musician
by John Kelman
Published: May 2, 2017
Read "Grateful Dead: Cornell '77" Extended Analysis Grateful Dead: Cornell '77
by Doug Collette
Published: May 6, 2017
Read "Trouble No More - The Bootleg Series Vol. 13 / 1979-1981" Extended Analysis Trouble No More - The Bootleg Series Vol. 13 / 1979-1981
by Doug Collette
Published: November 19, 2017