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Octobop

Cool jazz. Images of the early days on the West Coast when new ideas, harmonies, ensemble playing and great improvisation were all happening. Recreating and updating that experience is the mission of Octobop. Performing and promoting the music that began with The Birth of the Cool -- and the innovations of Gerry Mulligan, Chet Baker, Shorty Rogers, Bud Shank, Bob Cooper, Dave Pell, Jimmy Guiffre, and Howard Rumsey among others -- Octobop makes cool jazz hot again.

The musicians of Octobop:
Brian Brockhouse - Bass
Jack Conway - Guitar
Bill Hazzard - Vibes
Roy Kaufmann - Drums
Matt Kesner - Tenor, Alto, Soprano Sax
Geoff Roach- Baritone Sax, Bass Sax, Alto Sax and Alto Flute
Jon Schermer - Trombone
Randy Smith - Trumpet and Flugelhorn

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Octobop: Live @ Savanna Jazz

Read "Live @ Savanna Jazz" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Having recorded half a dozen creditable albums in studio settings, saxophonist Geoff Roach's central California-based ensemble Octobop has added something new and exciting on No. 7--a hip and enthusiastic audience. Live @ Savanna Jazz was recorded in January 2018 at the nightspot which bears that name in San Carlos, CA. “I've always thought the band was ...

. . .Out of Nowhere

Label: TJO
Released: 2013
Track listing: Bug in a Rug; Out of Nowhere; Lonesome Boulevard; Embarcadero; Cars and Coffee; I’ll Take Romance; Charade; Beautiful Love; Baby Elephant Walk; Whatever Possessed Me?; Romaine; Sunset Eyes; El Gaucho.

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Octobop: . . .Out of Nowhere

Read ". . .Out of Nowhere" reviewed by Jack Bowers

With Octobop, what you see (and hear) is what you get: “octo," as in octet, and “bop," as in swinging, straight-from-the-shoulder jazz as practiced by the legendary masters who rewrote the music's vocabulary in the '40s, '50s and '60s. Saxophonist and prime mover Geoff Roach leads the California-based group on its sixth CD, Out of Nowhere, ...

Very Early

Label: Mystic Lane Records
Released: 2007
Track listing: Love Me or Leave Me; Keester Parade; Pink Panther; A Ballad; Very Early; Powder Puff; Mosaic; Born to Be Blue; Saudades; Do You Know What It Means to Miss New Orleans; Goodbye Porkpie Hat; You

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Octobop: Very Early

Read "Very Early" reviewed by Michael P. Gladstone

Why can't they make albums like this anymore? A few words that might best describe this project could be: West Coast Jazz both joyous and swinging. The group's leader, reedman Geoff Roach, puts the Octobop musical mission in total perspective. Roach has always been enamored of the mid-sized West Coast bands of Shorty Rogers, Marty Paich ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Octobop: Very Early

Read "Very Early" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

What's cool about Octobop, besides the band's clever name and conception, is the beautifully retro nature of its music. An octet is the middle child, in between a small combo and a big band. Smaller groups have long been a favorite format of arrangers and Very Early is very much an arranger's collection. ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Octobop: Very Early

Read "Very Early" reviewed by Jack Bowers

I received a copy of Octobop's fourth CD, Very Early, very late--well past its actual release date--but better late than never, as saxophonist Geoff Roach's urbane northern California-based ensemble does its usual splendid job of reawakening and perpetuating the cool sounds of West Coast Jazz from the '50s, '60s and beyond. This time, the octet has ...

After Dark

Label: Mystic Lane Records
Released: 2005
Track listing: Playboy Theme; Dreamsville; The Duke You Say!; The Way You Look Tonight; Relaxin

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Octobop: After Dark

Read "After Dark" reviewed by Jack Bowers

In spite of all that has been written and said about it, West Coast jazz in the '50s and '60s wasn't really “cool"--no more so than what was being played on the East Coast or in the heartland--but it did have a certain indefinable quality that set it apart. I'd say it was more “hip" than ...


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