by Mike Telin
It’s been three decades since the Oberlin Conservatory launched its Jazz Studies Program, and beginning on Monday, April 15, the school will mark the milestone with a three-day celebration. (A full schedule is below.) The festivities will culminate on Wednesday, April 17 at 7:30 pm in Finney Chapel with an Artist Recital Series performance by The Spring Quartet, an all-star ensemble that includes drummer Jack DeJohnette, saxman Joe Lovano, bassist/vocalist Esperanza Spalding, and pianist Leo Genovese. Tickets are limited and available online.
The membership of the Spring Quartet spans three generations, something that DeJohnette, a 2012 NEA Jazz Master, said makes for a nice balance of older and younger generations. “There’s this exchange of inspiration from Esperanza and Leo and you need that young energy,” he said during an interview.
In a separate interview Joe Lovano said that the group shares a common musical vocabulary which is the reason the four members “clicked from the very first downbeat.”
DeJohnette agreed. “Sometimes people come together and the magic happens,” he said. “We have a lot of love and respect for each other as people and as artists, and the propensity to work together cooperatively is greatly enhanced because of that.” [Read more…]