147

Jack DeJohnette and John Surman at the Seattle Art Museum

Jack Gold-Molina By

Sign in to view read count
Jack DeJohnette and John Surman
Earshot Jazz Festival
Seattle Art Museum
October 26, 2002

The evening began with a kind of mood piece. With a background of ambient sound programmed into a sequencer and English reeds player John Surman complementing with bass clarinet, Jack DeJohnette read poetry by Walt Whitman, poetry that gave the listener a sense of awareness of the environment. Following his reading, DeJohnette then seated himself behind his drum set and triggered a pan-African rhythm from his midi percussion kit then proceeded to lay into the pocket with a backbeat. Surman improvised at first on his bass clarinet then later switched to saxophone playing intense, intricate runs often outside of the musical structure with DeJohnette complementing him. After thirty minutes or so, this first piece ended with the two musicians gradually easing back and allowing the ambient background music to once again become more prominent. The first set ended with a performance of "After The Rain" by John Coltrane with DeJohnette playing piano demonstrating that he is as skilled a pianist as he is a drummer.
Throughout the evening DeJohnette and Surman improvised at times playing with full musical intensity and other times playing more ambient musical passages. Surman alternated between bass clarinet, soprano, tenor and bass saxophone, and, in the final piece, midi stick in which DeJohnette also played midi percussion pads with his hands utilizing programmed sounds imitating djembes, congas, and tablas. Surman consistently pushed the limits of the musical structure with the two musicians at times approaching avante-garde territory, while DeJohnette played with a fiery intensity that was reminiscent of the "Lost Quintet" of Miles Davis's Bitches Brew era. As intricate and outside as Surman's playing was, DeJohnette's playing that night could have been compared with his playing on Miles's Fillmore albums of 1970.


Shop

More Articles

Read Foundation of Funk at Cervantes Masterpiece Ballroom Live Reviews Foundation of Funk at Cervantes Masterpiece Ballroom
by Geoff Anderson
Published: February 20, 2017
Read The Cookers at Nighttown Live Reviews The Cookers at Nighttown
by C. Andrew Hovan
Published: February 16, 2017
Read Monty Alexander Trio at Longwood Gardens Live Reviews Monty Alexander Trio at Longwood Gardens
by Geno Thackara
Published: February 15, 2017
Read Kronos Festival 2017 Live Reviews Kronos Festival 2017
by Harry S. Pariser
Published: February 12, 2017
Read "Peter Murphy at (le) Poisson Rouge" Live Reviews Peter Murphy at (le) Poisson Rouge
by Mike Perciaccante
Published: May 1, 2016
Read "Andy Milne and Dapp Theory at SOUTH Jazz Kitchen" Live Reviews Andy Milne and Dapp Theory at SOUTH Jazz Kitchen
by Mike Jacobs
Published: May 19, 2016
Read "Bray Jazz 2016" Live Reviews Bray Jazz 2016
by Ian Patterson
Published: May 10, 2016
Read "WOMAD 2016" Live Reviews WOMAD 2016
by Martin Longley
Published: August 15, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!