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Edsel Gomez at the Vermont Jazz Center on 2/18/06


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On Saturday, February 18th, at 8:00 PM, the Vermont Jazz Center presents a concert with Puerto Rican born, pianist, Edsel Gomez and his trio including bassist Brittish bassist Howard Britz and Venezuelan drummer Tony De Vivo. Gomez will be performing music inspired by both his Latin heritage as well as his fascination with Cubism. His recently released CD, entitled Cubist Music has been accruing accolades from numerous jazz critics, including a six minute spot on NPR's Fresh Air where jazz critic, Kevin Whitehead hailed it as “One of the brightest jazz records I've heard in a while - rich textures, catchy tunes, meaty solos - why can't they all be this good?

Gomez is a pianist who performs music from a wide breadth of styles. He is intimate with Brazilian music having lived there for a decade, he can play straight-ahead jazz, he is a contemporary musician with a knowledge of the avant-garde language, and he can play Latin Montunos with such fire that he was asked by one of the world's top drummers, Jack DeJohnette, to play in his Latin Jazz Project. Edsel Gomez is charismatic clarinetist/composer Don Byron's pianist of choice and has recorded several projects with him. He has recorded dozens of CDs with highly regarded musicians of several genres including a ten year stint of recording and touring with one of the leading saxophonists in Latin music, David Sanchez. Other notable recording entries in Gomez's discography include The Latin Side of Miles Davis and Que Viva Coltrane with Conrad Herwig and Brian Lynch plus work with Freddie Bryant and Carlos “Patato" Valdez.

Edsel Gomez, above all, is a creative individual. In searching for compositional or improvisational material, he came across the notion of emulating the cubist form of visual arts and transmogrifying them into a musical, improvisational context. In the liner notes to his highly acclaimed new album Cubist Music, Gomez states: “In very much the same way a cubist painting portrays an image by combining cubes or building blocks, this concept consists of a search for melodies or patterns that are perceived to have a beginning and an end. I call these melodic motifs or complete unit patterns we search for 'unitifs.' For this recording, the musicians were requested to search for these unitifs within their improvised lines and to build their solos by juxtaposing and contrasting different unitifs just like cubes in a cubist painting."

Gomez's “cubist" approach gives the listener an exciting opportunity to actively participate in the improvisational journey. Here one can listen to the musicians consciously focusing on the development of patterns and motifs during their improvisational forays. The listener can easily identify these segments of sounds and hear how they combine and connect to form a coherent whole. All this above a bristling Latin beat.

Gomez will appear at the Vermont Jazz Center on February 18th at 8:00 PM in a trio format with bassist Howard Britz and drummer Tony De Vivo. Britz, originally from the UK in now based in Brooklyn, NY. He has toured or recorded with, amongst others Jon Hendricks and Annie Ross, Danilo Perez, Paquito de Rivera, Sam Rivers, Julius Hemphill, Kenny Werner, Uri Caine, Kenny Wheeler and New Yorks' Central Baptist Gospel Choir. The drummer of the trio, Tony De Vivo is originally from Caracas, Venezuela. Mr. De Vivo has toured the Americas and Europe as co-leader with the Son Montuno band Mo'Guajiro, and as a leader in collaboration with bassist Miriam Sullivan with the Latin- Jazz group Jazzsabroson, which was selected and honored twice (2003 and 2005) by The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and the U.S. Department of State for inclusion in the “Jazz Ambassadors" international touring program. He also performs with the flamenco group Gazpacho Andalu and many other world music ensembles based out of his current home, New York City.

The Edsel Gomez Trio will appear at the Vermont Jazz Center on February 18th at 8:00 PM. This should be a thrilling experience filled with energized music boasting a fresh sound. Edsel Gomez is on the cutting edge of the jazz scene - it is a rare treat to host him and his conjunto here in Brattleboro. Tickets are $14 for general admission seating, $10 for students and seniors. Add $2.00 to tickets purchased at the door without a reservation. This concert will probably sell out, so purchase tickets on-line at http://www.vtjazz.org, or reserve them at the VJC by calling (802) 254 9088, ext. 1.

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