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Mike Rivard

Having grown up in Minnesota, Mike Rivard moved to Boston in 1981 to attend The Berklee College of Music, where he studied both electric and acoustic basses as well as composition. During this time he also studied privately with the renowned jazz improv teacher Charlie Banacos. Rivard cites amongst his main influences Dave Holland, Bootsy Collins, James Jamerson, Colin Moulding, Charlie Haden, Michael Henderson, Charles Mingus, Mick Karn, Gnawa Music, Tony Levin and John Wetton. A scholarship in 1986 led to his studying with Dave Holland at the Banff Center for Fine Arts, and subsequently purchasing one of Holland's acoustic basses

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Club d'Elf: Night Sparkles

Read "Night Sparkles" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki

On December 16, 2011, bassist and bandleader Mike Rivard and the rest of the floating Club d'Elf instrumental ensemble assembled at the Lizard Lounge in Cambridge (MA), for their regular gig at the regular location in the extended live residency that the band began at the Lounge back in 1998 (and continues to this day). Guest ...

ARTICLE: FROM THE INSIDE OUT

Riding Waves, Moving Boundaries, and Building The Wall

Read "Riding Waves, Moving Boundaries, and Building The Wall" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki

Franco Ambrosetti Quintet Long Waves Unit Records 2019 Trumpeter Franco Ambrosetti balances in the middle of three jazz generations, the father of saxophonist Gianluca and son of saxophonist Flavio, who once played opposite Charlie Parker at the Paris Jazz Festival. Although he grew up studying classical ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Club d'Elf: Live at Club Helsinki

Read "Live at Club Helsinki" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki

Club d'Elf and their sprawling live records present a unique challenge to folks who write about them. This double Live at Club Helsinki set reveals every modern style and multiple Moroccan rhythms (except for opera and bluegrass--maybe). But often we want so much to relate or explain these sounds, and there's so much going on in ...

Jazz in Its Present Tents

Read "Jazz in Its Present Tents" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki

Jazz sets up camp throughout different geographies--and centuries. Bossacucanova The Best of Bossacucanova Six Degrees Records 2016 Few bands have built upon the legacy of their chosen field the way that Bossacucanova has advanced the music of their native Brazil. Their story begins about two ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Club d'Elf: Live at Club Helsinki

Read "Live at Club Helsinki" reviewed by Maurizio Comandini

Il gruppo mutabile di elfi che si raccoglie abitualmente attorno al bassista Mike Rivard ha colpito di nuovo. Questa volta però il gruppo Club D'Elf non è stato registrato nell'abituale Lizard Lounge di Cambridge, nella immediata periferia di Boston, che ospita praticamente ogni settimana (o giù di lì) i loro lunghi concerti. Per questa importante occasione ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Club d'Elf: Live at Club Helsinki

Read "Live at Club Helsinki" reviewed by Mark Sullivan

The Boston-based collective Club d'Elf seems to attract genre labels like nobody's business. Moroccan-dosed dub-jazz, trance, psychedelia, free jazz, electronica, hip hop, avant-garde, jam band, rock...what other styles have you got? At one point or another any of these labels could apply, but the distinctions are blurred in the joyous sonic stew. The band has hosted ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Club d'Elf: Live at Club Helsinki

Read "Live at Club Helsinki" reviewed by Doug Collette

It's not really necessary to be a dervish dancer to appreciate Club d'Elf, especially because, on Live at Club Helsinki, the prominence of varied sounds from Duke Levine's electric guitars, combined with the keyboard wizardry of John Medeski, is enough to capture and hold the attention of (almost) any contemporary music-lover. It's as effortless to fall ...

ARTICLE: LIVE REVIEW

Ecuador Jazz 2016

Read "Ecuador Jazz 2016" reviewed by Mark Holston

Ecuador Jazz 2016 Quito, Ecuador February 10-21, 2016 When jazz cognoscente discuss their favorite festival destinations, it's understandable if Quito, Ecuador is seldom, if ever, mentioned. Geographically isolated in the mountainous reaches of South America's second smallest Spanish- speaking nation, this hilly, equator-hugging capital city of some two million souls is surrounded ...

ARTICLE: CATCHING UP WITH

Mike Rivard: Entranced By The Music

Read "Mike Rivard: Entranced By The Music" reviewed by Paul Naser

As globalization blends cultures and markets more and more everyday, it is only natural that artistic traditions and the artists that study them do the same. Mike Rivard is a leader in this regard, pioneering some of the most unique blends of musical styles and sounds today. Talking to him about his band Club D'elf and ...


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