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Christopher Zuar Orchestra: Musings

Read "Musings" reviewed by Budd Kopman

There is no doubt that composer Christopher Zuar's debut recording Musings is an impressive achievement. The sheer overall sonic brilliance and obvious control of the instrumental forces at hand signal a talent to be reckoned with. Not even thirty at the time of the recording, Zuar's music is surprisingly mature and well conceived. The issue, then, becomes one of finding or developing a recognizable voice in a field (jazz orchestra) which is dominated by a few voices which ...

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Christopher Zuar Orchestra: Musings

Read "Musings" reviewed by Jack Bowers

When a composer / arranger who hasn't yet turned thirty can enlist the caliber of musicians who are present and accounted for on Musings, the inescapable assumption is that something special is afoot. Upon listening, that appraisal proves to be quite accurate, as young Christopher Zuar (twenty-seven when this debut album was recorded) presents seven of his uncommonly erudite and perceptive compositions (and one, which he arranged, by Egberto Gismonti) that together signal the emergence of an exemplary talent.

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Christopher Zuar Orchestra: Musings

Read "Musings" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

If you open the packaging for this album, you'll encounter a picture of Christopher Zuar that initially seems to touch on a theme of isolation. Shadows and light play against the wall behind him, but it's Zuar himself, sitting and staring into the distance over his piano, that really draws the eyes in. After looking at the photo for several moments, the pixels, forming a black and white visual cipher, finally choose to reveal the truth: This isn't a portrait ...


Ocean Blues

"Ocean Blues" performed by the Dave Wilson Quartet at Chris’ Jazz Café (Philadelphia) on March 29, 2018. From the album One Night At Chris’ (2019) featuring Dave Wilson (saxophone), Dan Monaghan (drums), Tony Marino (bass) and Kirk Reese (piano).

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