In the dead of winter, a musical oasis erupts each January as festival jazz comes out of hibernation at the NYC Winter JazzFest. Although the program encompasses many, many venues featuring many, many performers, one location beckons the listener to sit tight without scurrying from site to site. It is the stage that presents ECM recording artists exclusively. For the January 2016 festival, ECM producer and founder Manfred Eicher was in attendance at the New School's Tishman Auditorium as a dozen performances unfolded over a two-day period. A packed house that made it difficult for those sampling multiple venues to find acceptable seating attests to the drawing power of the ECM stable of artists.
Rhythm Abstraction: Azure is the first volume of new compositions created as a follow up to 2018’s
release Rhythm Kaleidoscope. As with that release, Brock Avery improvised drum and percussion
solos. Frank Macchia then composed music for woodwinds and orchestra to Brock’s creations. Azure
is the first of three extended play albums of 6-7 compositions which will be released starting in
January and followed up in April and July. In Azure we have a created a group of pieces that continue
our quest for honoring the art of improvisation with a “stream-of-consciousness” sense of
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