Return of the Pittsburgh Collective October 29

Posted: October 14, 2009

On Thursday, October 29, associate professor of music David Sanford brings his 20-piece big band, the Pittsburgh Collective, back to the college where the band played its very first concert in 2003. The performance in Chapin Auditorium will be the band’s first performance in the area since its WFCR benefit concert there in the fall of 2007. The concert begins at 7:30 pm and is free to the public and accessible.

The group, which has been described as "steeped in jazz, funk and modern classical music" (Alexander Helfand, Jazziz), "the kind of Third Stream inventive musical consciousness we haven’t heard since the fifties" (Dick Crockett, WCOM-FM, Sacramento, CA), and "as loud as a punk band blasting through dual Marshall stacks" (Tory Adler, sound technician at Filene Hall, Skidmore College), and whose first disc Live at the Knitting Factory (Oxingale Records, 2007) was named one of the discs of the year in the Jazziz magazine Critics’ Choice issue, falls between genres--although it frequently features jazz improvisation.

The performance will feature several of Sanford’s compositions and arrangements from the Live at the Knitting Factory disc, two new works, a piece by Gunther Schuller--who created the term “Third Stream” to define music that derives from both jazz and classical approaches--and an arrangement by Sanford that hasn’t been performed since 1985 when he was a college senior. 

Among the notable soloists in this performance are Grammy-nominated trumpeter Steven Bernstein, a brilliant composer and arranger who leads his own internationally renowned bands Sex Mob and the Millennial Territory Orchestra, and winner of Downbeat Magazine’s Talent Deserving Wider Recognition on trombone for many years, Josh Roseman, who also leads several high profile ensembles including JRU, Water Surgeons, and his own 11-piece big band Extended Constellations. Of local interest, Westfield State and Holyoke Community College professor and Five College saxophone teacher Ted Levine will return on lead alto, and UMass graduates--and longtime Northampton residents--Geoff Vidal and Theo Moore will be featured on tenor sax and congas respectively.  

Also of note, on Wednesday, October 28, the band will play two shows at the Jazz Gallery in New York City. 

Band personnel are Ted Levine, Stephanie Long, Steve Moran, Geoff Vidal, Brad Hubbard, reeds; Tim Leopold, Jon Nelson, Darryl Shaw, Sycil Mathai, Steven Bernstein, trumpets; Josh Roseman, Jim Messbauer, Benjamin Herrington, trombones; Steve Gehring, bass trombone; Raymond Stewart, tuba; David Fabris, electric guitar; Dave Phillips, bass; John Halle, piano; John Bacon, drums; Theo Moore, percussion; David Sanford, conductor.

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