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Ecumenics

The Ecumenics were brought to gether to record Loren Stillman's music and Bruce Heckman's lyrics. The beauty and comfort of original spiritual music lifted by the excitement of modern jazz improvisation. Loren Stillman, alto sax; Kate McGarry, vocals; Aaron Goldberg, keyboards; Ali Jackson, drums.

STAINED GLASS JAZZ was started to record live jazz by superb musicians performing original music and lyrics. The first project is of spiritual music by the ECUMENICS(TM), but subsequent projects are planned to record unique jazz treatments of the blues, chants, folk, and any other inspiration that fits.

We felt that breaking into the recording business with new music is extremely difficult. The technology is such that excellent recordings can be produced, packaged, and distributed in a manageable way. Independent labels are flexible and respond more rapidly to market demands. The recent increase in the popualrity of jazz also encouraged us to form this record company.

LOREN STILLMAN composed the music for Stained Glass Jazz' first project, JAZZ PSALMS(c), to convey peace and comfort to listeners and apply the contrast of modern jazz improvisation to the more traditional form. Loren was a semi-finalist in the 2002 Thelonius Monk International Jazz Competition and has won DOWNBEAT's Outstanding Performance award for jazz instrumental in 1996 and 1998. He was just named to the list of up and coming alto sax players in Downbeat's critics' poll. He plays with John Abercrombie in the group, Jackalope, and tours extensively in Europe.

ALI JACKSON comes from a musical family. He studied at the New School and with Max Roach, Joe Chambers, Chico Hamilton, and Charli Persip. Ali has played drums with Wynton Marsalis, Greg Osby, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Eric Reed, and many other first rank musicians. He gives master classes at the University of Michigan and injects an infectious enjoyment to the band.

The harmonium is a keyboard instrument with an attached bellows that KATE MCGARRY uses on JAZZ PSALMS(c) with great effect to enhance the plaintive, heartfelt singing that characterizes her work here (though she always swings). The harmonium is used as a devotional instrument and so is especially appropriate for the music. Kate recently released her CD on Palmetto as the first vocalist signed by the label. She was called "the new sensation" by Laurence Donahue-Greene in the February 2004 ALL ABOUT JAZZ. Some of the artists Kate has appeared with are: Hank Jones, Clark Terry, Fred Hersh, and many others.

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Album Discography

Recordings: As Leader | As Sideperson

Jazz Psalms

Stained Glass Jazz
2004

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