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Here is ENGAGE as a special premium release from Greenleaf Music only. For the first time, we decided to make this exclusive music available as a stand alone CD and download to non-subscribers.
Optimism. Action. Community.
ENGAGE is a direct descendant of UPLIFT, the 2018 set of compositions dedicated to positive action. We will be following up with all the organizations and causes invoked in that piece. And engaged in community and activism. People showed up in 2018, and our hope is that this trend will continue. We are going to need to be engaged to make the changes that will save our environment, our equality, our sciences and humanities. My hope is that everyone, in every field, will be involved and engaged in this work. Writing and performing these pieces is a reminder to myself not to get mired in the negativity — to stay positive and engaged through music daily.
We’re digging into that optimism musically in these pieces. The compositional rule was simply to build them all out of major triads. Each of the twelve pieces approaches that in a different way, and they were built for this collaborative and communicative ensemble with Anna Webber (alto and bass flutes, tenor sax), Tomeka Reid (cello), Jeff Parker (guitar), Nick Dunston (bass), and Kate Gentile (drums).
On some of the monthly pieces, we will be joined by trumpeters Dave Adewumi and Riley Mulherkar. I can’t wait to share the whole series with you. ENGAGE.
If you know someone who would like to hear this music and be engaged with Greenleaf Music, please pass this link along to them:
released January 4, 2019
Dave Douglas, trumpet
Jeff Parker, guitar
Tomeka Reid, cello
Anna Webber, alto and bass flutes and tenor saxophone
Nick Dunston, bass
Kate Gentile, drums
Recorded and mixed by Tyler McDiarmid on December 3, 2018 at The Bunker Studios, Brooklyn, NY.
Assistant Engineer: Nolan Thies
Photography by Anna Yatskevich
Graphics by Lukas Frei
All compositions and arrangements by Dave Douglas (Dave Douglas Music / BMI)
“Douglas, 56, is good at pulling musicians together in contexts that support their musical voices but sound different from what they typically do. That’s the case with Engage, a new ensemble that features five younger improvisers, each aligned with a different corner of the avant-garde. As Engage, they play low-boil, medium-tempo music soaked in lovely harmonies; it’s not about centrifugal motion or free improvising so much as it’s about depth and connection and body.”
Giovanni Russonello, New York Times
"Douglas enlists a brilliant team of collaborators: cellist Tomeka Reid, flutist Anna Webber, bassist Nick Dunston, drummer Kate Gentile — and guitarist Jeff Parker, whose solo is a focal point in the track ["Showing Up"]"
Nate Chinen, WBGO, Take Five Feature
"From the gospel-inflected groove of “Free Libraries” to the “Maiden Voyage”-style pulse that powers “Sanctuary Cities,” Douglas and company make a compelling case that standing up for shared values isn’t just good politics, but good art as well."
J.D. Considine, Downbeat Editor's Pick
"Each track ... feels like a call to action, inspired by the optimism generated by the opposition to the political toxicity of recent times. This optimism is reflected in the compositions themselves...and in the collaborative spirit of the band."
Matt Micucci, JAZZIZ ‘The Week in Jazz’ Feature
“A clarity of purpose is prominent in many of these tunes, with golden melodies leading the charge and the sextet’s feisty interplay exploding the themes. Rather than coming off like an ornery indictment of kids being caged at the the border, “How Are The Children?” radiates a dark-hued idealism that offers solace while suggesting transcendence, with saxophonist Ana Webber digging in to offer a variety of emotions in a perpetually flourishing solo.”