Saxophonist/Composer Russ Nolan Appearing at the Kitano, May 2 & 3, Featuring Kenny Werner


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Russ Nolan
Saxophonist/Composer Russ Nolan Appearing at The Kitano Friday & Saturday, May 2 & 3, In Support & Celebration of With You in Mind

Nolan will be appearing with Kenny Werner (piano), Johannes Weidenmuller (bass) and Ronen Itzik (drums)

LISTINGS INFO: The Kitano is located at 66 Park Ave. (at E 38th St.), Tel 212 885 7000, website kitano.com, showtimes are 8 & 10 PM, $25 cover, $15 minimum

“From the opening seconds of 'Kilson's Groove' to the lush, chordal, fade of 'By The Way', tenor saxophonist Russ Nolan has proven his mettle as a composer and soloist." “Nolan has a range that takes in Joe Lovano's melodic muscle and Wayne Shorter's probing style." --Richard Kamins, The Hartford Courant

“innovative, astounding, and mesmerizing." -The Bergen News/Commuter Week

“an enticing vehicle for Nolan's impressive soprano work, recalling at times Wayne Shorter's pungent, mysterious tone." “definitely holds his own in the company of Werner's talented trio." --Greg Camphire, All About Jazz Saxophonist/composer Russ Nolan will be appearing in support and celebration of his second recording as a leader, With You in Mind, at The Kitano on Friday & Saturday, May 2 & 3, featuring the great Kenny Werner on piano, Johannes Weidenmuller on bass and Ronen Itzik on drums. With You In Mind is the follow up release to Nolan's stunning debut, Two Colors, and from the opening notes of this recording it is clear that this rising star on the scene has once again created an album that overflows with dramatic, open- eared interplay, joy, virtuosity and expression.

The presence of The Kenny Werner Trio on With You In Mind is of major importance as Russ Nolan demonstrates with the opening funk burner, “Kilson's Groove" (a nod to drummer Billy Kilson's funky grooves with the Dave Holland Quintet), that he is major league player, fully able to not only keep pace with this longstanding trio, but to also lead them on musical adventures that they surely found challenging, stimulating and satisfying. The relationship with pianist Werner goes back to their initial meeting in Nolan's hometown of Chicago in 2001 that, “changed the course of my life. Not only by learning his compositional approach, but by confirming my suspicions that I needed to move to New York to absorb the creative spirit there. Or have it absorb me," said the saxophonist. Russ Nolan is a double threat, equal parts astounding player and composer. There has perhaps not been a composition since “Take The A Train" that conveys the feeling of riding the New York City subway system as accurately as the second track on the record, Nolan's “Stand Clear of The Closing Doors." The quartet weaves a musical tapestry that provides the same sense of wonderment, excitement, and risk-taking, that a trip on the subway always delivers. “Disheveled Waltz" truly demonstrates what it means for an ensemble to interact, and what it really means to say that a group has a great rapport. Nolan's haunting melody is delivered with one of the purest and pleasing-to-the-ear soprano saxophone sounds in jazz today, in unison with Werner, before the quartet unleashes a bounty of interchange, crafting a captivating statement in which meter and tempo stretch, contract, extracting every drop of emotion from the tune.

Other highlights on the recording include the Monkish “Diatonicus" which is “not referring to any of his compositions in particular, just the vibe," explains Nolan. The fresh take on “Naima" is the album's only standard: “Trane is still my Number One influence, but I find reinterpreting him from a compositional standpoint more vibrant than regurgitating his changes or patterns."

Throughout With You in Mind it is abundantly clear that Russ Nolan eats, breathes and sleeps music. It is this kind of dedication and studiousness, not to mention his natural talent, that enabled him to create a recording that, is not only a thrill to listen to, but must have been a thrill to make.

With You in Mind is available now at Russnolan.com, CDBaby.com, Itunes.com and at live performances.

This story appears courtesy of Jason Byrne, Red Cat Publicity.
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