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Saxophonist Christopher Burnett Set to Release Standards Album On ARC Label


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Christopher Burnett is preparing the release of his fourth album as a leader titled “Standards Vol. 1” – scheduled to be released commercially and distributed worldwide on the ARC record label in 2020.
—Artists Recording Collective
Christopher Burnett
Kansas City based alto saxophonist, composer and educator, Christopher Burnett has announced the recording of his fourth album as a leader titled, The Standards, Vol. 1 on the Artists Recording Collective (ARC) label. The album of mostly post-bop compositions will be released in 2020 to purposely coincide with the 100th birth year of bebop pioneer, Charlie Parker.

“I have at least 50 jazz masterworks that I really love for various reasons," Burnett said. “And obviously, as a composer, I hope to record my own original compositions. But, I also want to record the work of other composers I grew up listening to as a jazz artist and student of the music."

Mr. Burnett says that with the standards project, he selected 17 of his favorites by other composers to arrange along with four of his own original works to ultimately record with Christopher Burnett Quintet and five guest musicians (CbQ+5).

The first recording is volume one of a planned total of three albums in this series and it contains six individual works. The noted recording engineer, Bill Crain, of BRC Audio Productions in Kansas City is producing the album. The augmented ensemble appears on Burnett's thoughtful arrangements of the Chick Corea composition, “Windows" and the Herbie Hancock composition, “Dolphin Dance."

“I’m using the additional instruments to supplement the music," Burnett said. “But a primary consideration is to retain the jazz quintet aesthetic and feel of the music too. I hope listeners enjoy our presentations, but I'm equally just happy to finally be able to document my renditions on an album."

Mr. Burnett's jazz ensemble had been performing this music each month for an entire year during a year-long residency at Black Dolphin in Kansas City on the first Saturday of each month. His reasoning for working a regular casual gig with essentially the same band was to achieve a more refined aesthetic as an ensemble.

“The musicians in my ensemble are great players by any standard," Burnett said. “I really appreciate John Scott at Black Dolphin for letting us have those first Saturdays during the year he was still fleshing out the venue concept. That monthly residency helped establish the musical aesthetic of an actual working group, rather than the sound of a random assemblage of great players."

Post-bop is best described as a jazz style existing from the mid-1960s onward. Post-bop assimilates hard bop, modal jazz, avant-garde and free jazz without necessarily being immediately identifiable as any of those styles. It is also primarily a concert music that is still widely appreciated the world over.

“As a child of the US Civil Rights Era, post-bop music is the modern jazz that first resonated with me both as a person and as an artist," Burnett said. “Jazz music reflects what is going on in all facets of modern society. These are beautiful and timeless works of music, harmonically and melodically."

About Christopher Burnett

Christopher L. Burnett is a critically acclaimed alto saxophonist, educator, arts business leader, and award-winning composer who began his professional career with military jazz bands going pro directly upon graduating high school at 18 years old. He returned to his native Kansas City area after his military career in 2001.

Mr. Burnett completed his fourth album as a leader titled Standards Vol. 1—scheduled to be released commercially in 2020 and distributed worldwide on the ARC record label.

Over the course of his career, Mr. Burnett has performed professionally around the world, recorded noteworthy albums as a leader, taught at the college-level and co- founded a significant independent recording label.

A member of the official touring roster for the state of Kansas, Mr. Burnett’s jazz quintet is an eclectic instrumental music ensemble comprised of accomplished professional artists who are also experienced music educators. Concert performances feature Burnett original compositions and a select repertoire of jazz masterworks. He was a featured artist at the historically famous Drum Room for two years, performed on the first Saturday of each month during 2018 in the Crossroads Arts District of Kansas City and was the guest artist and clinician for the Northwest Missouri State Jazz Festival in 2019.

Mr. Burnett endorses and plays Selmer (Paris) saxophones exclusively and is an official Conn-Selmer artist and clinician.

He has performed alongside and worked with many wonderful artists. He has shared the stage and studio with great musicians such as Bobby Watson, Will Matthews, Bob Bowman, Marcus Hampton, Ahmad Alaadeen, Greg Carroll, Bill Crain, David Basse, Sumi Tonooka, Erica Lindsay, Dino Massa, Marco Zurzolo, Lutz Herbig, Michael Session, Jeff “Siege” Siegel, Michael Jefry Stevens, Stanton Kessler, Jim Nesbit, Keith Philbrick, Dr. Jerry Coker, Kevin Cerovich, Roger Wilder, Bill McKemy, Charles Gatschet, Gerald Dunn, Dennis Winslett, Kerry Strayer, Harold O’Neal, Clarence Smith, Matt Otto, John Kizilarmut, Dr. Craig Treinen, Dr. Arthur White, Dr. Mike Pagan, Dr. David Aaberg, Dr. Louis Neal, and Gerald Spaits among many others.

Called “Jazz’s First Brand Marketing Collective” (All About Jazz) the Artists Recording Collective (ARC) is an internationally established independent recording label based upon a new artist collective model of artist empowerment and ownership of their work. The ARC catalog contains over 100 releases with all titles available at all of the major retailers worldwide. Nearly 300 artists appear on ARC recordings, including emerging talent and established noted names in music.

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