JEFF DENSON TRIO + LEE KONITZ
After more than a decade as a co-leader of the internationally acclaimed trio Minsarah, bassist Jeff Denson is forging into new territory with his trio that features Dan Zemelman on piano and Jon Arkin on drums. Each season, Jeff will select an outstanding featured guest featuring the project as, The Jeff Denson Trio +1. For the 2015/2016 season the special featured guest will be legendary alto saxophonist Lee Konitz. Jeff has performed with Lee since 2007 and was a member of the Lee Konitz New Quartet, the only permanent group that the eminent saxophonist has ever led.
I'll Fly Away
A singular collaboration with the powerhouse San Diego pianist Joshua White, I'll Fly Away is an emotionally charged project devoted to hymns and spirituals.
The sacred music project with White grew out of several hymns that Denson performed at funerals for his father and his maternal grandmother who helped raise him, including the title track, performed in three divergent renditions, and the breathtaking solo arco version of "Amazing Grace." The session was recorded in one day and all but one track is a first take, "a really good demonstration of how we share and communicate and share musical aesthetics. We are both really adventurous and take a lot of risks. I just wanted to do what we do."
The collaboration with Puntin began, Denson writes in his succinct notes for Two, "in Cologne, Germany in 2008, and ended two years later on a rainy day in Berlin: two musicians, from two continents, two years apart, on two different days, in two different cities, met and recorded this music without discussion or plan … " Investigating a wide array of moods and textures, the music can be playful or threatening, innocent or carnal. "We didn't talk about anything beforehand," says Denson. "We turned the mics on and just played. The music is completely improvised; the chord changes that appear are all spontaneous."