Happy spring! The daffodils are singing, and the citrine leaves are unfurling!

In this missive I give to you two great shows to check out, and an interview with Ed Brainerd about Chet Baker.

Lastly, mark your calendars for two great spring shows. Both are at the Arts Block in Greenfield MA, part of Wayne Roberts’ Sunday Night Jazz Series there.

This Sunday night, April 30 I’m bringing the Chet Baker Tribute with Ed Brainerd and Wayne Roberts to the Arts Block in Greenfield, MA, part of Wayne Roberts’ Sunday Night Jazz Series there. This is a rare area appearance of this music and not to be missed. The show is from 5-8 PM and will also feature special guests such as Steve Koziol (Span of Sunshine) and vocalist Lisa Davol. You can purchase tickets in advance for a discount here.

And mark your calendar for another great show at the Arts Block later this month. Sunday, May 28 is the Bossa Nova show with Nancy Janoson and Jason Shwartz. Hope to see you at both!

“The Chet Baker Tribute sublimely captures the soulful and hauntingly beautiful trumpet and vocal style of one of Jazz’s greatest icons. Featuring the sweet and sultry vocals of Rob Fletcher, and the smooth, articulate flugelhorn and trumpet of Ed Brainerd, this show is a tasteful tribute that embodies the vulnerability and intimacy of Chet Baker, and captures the qualities that made his music so beloved.”

“Ed Brainerd and Rob Fletcher’s Chet Baker tribute is comfort food made by a top chef. It is one of dulcet tones executed to perfection by two very talented artists who have found the magic ingredient to performing as one.”
– Brenda Hickson, Blue Cube Music

Ed Brainerd on Chet Baker Interview

Rob Fletcher recently interviewed flugelhorn & trumpet player Ed Brainerd about his love of Chet Baker’s music and how Chet’s approach has helped shaped his own style on the flugelhorn and trumpet. Here’s Ed:

 “Chet could burn with the best of them but it’s really a ‘less is more’ kind of a thing. He was one of the most sensitive, lyrical, melodic players. A Chet solo is simple enough where you could probably transcribe it but yet it’s beautiful enough where you would never have created it yourself. He comes up with these lines that aren’t necessarily complex but you say, ‘how did he ever think of that?’

And he had a unique tone quality – it was very recognizable. He played with an immense amount of feeling. And because I play the same instrument it just makes me appreciate it more because it sounds easy but it’s not. You can try and try and try to come up with My Funny Valentine in ways that he’s played it and you just won’t. It won’t happen.

He always played with top people. He picked wonderful standards and when he played, it was always his own statement that he made. He put a lot of himself into a tune. He wasn’t trying to sound like anyone else.

He focused on melody, lyricism and a ton of feeling. He was one of those people that you can feel they’re saying something to you. It was never just running lines or running changes for him – although he could do that with the best of them. His penchant for ballads was something good too because ballads are not played enough these days by a lot of people.”

Q: How has Chet’s playing colored your approach to trumpet?

“I try to maintain a focus on being lyrical, melodic and expressive. It’s about expressing yourself and trying not to worry about the technical difficulty of the lines you play or the amount of notes that you play.”

Great Shows In the Pioneer Valley To Check Out
May 6 Billy Childs Quartet, 8:00 PM, Vermont Jazz Center, Brattleboro, VT

Upcoming Shows
Sunday, April 30 5PMArts Block, Greenfield, MA
Chet Baker Tribute Show with Ed Brainerd and Wayne Roberts
$8 in advance (click here for tickets) or $10 at the door

Sunday, May 28 5PMArts Block, Greenfield, MA
Bossa Nova Trio with Nancy Janoson and Jason Shwartz

Saturday, July 8 7:30PM1794 Meeting House, New Salem, MA
O-Tones Trio with Ann Percival and Kerry Blount

Find out more
Rob Fletcher is available for your party, corporate event, or wedding in a variety of settings. You can choose solo or duo performances of jazz or vintage pop for intimate settings or with a full band to dance the night away!

Check out www.toasttown.com for more information, audio, song lists, testimonials and more.

Corporate work teams interested in team building can explore the power of music to build their team at www.musicofteams.com

Thank you for enjoying the magic of live music!


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  Apr 27, 2017