JazzBuffalo, in association with Pausa Art House, will present the second of several concept performances to take place at Pausa Art House this fall. Concept performances will focus on specific jazz artists as a means to help build audience awareness and appreciation for jazz. In addition, provide opportunities to spotlight jazz talent in WNY.
On Friday, September 30th at 8 pm, several of the top musicians in the area will present a concert entitled Sky Dive: Freddie Hubbard The CTI Years. The music performed will cover the pivotal years in the 1970’s that Hubbard produced groundbreaking new sounds on the CTI (Creed Taylor Incorporated) record label.
The ensemble organized for this special concert consists of Tim Clarke on trumpet, Dave Schiavone on sax/flute, Rick Strauss on guitar, John Hasselback, Jr. on trombone, Harry Graser on piano/keyboards/synthesizer, Jack Kulp on bass, Tony Zambito on percussion, and John Bacon, Jr. on drums. The concert will feature arrangements from several of the ensemble members.
Freddie Hubbard CTI Years
The CTI record label was founded by Creed Taylor in 1967 and through various restructuring, managed to stay operational through the decade of the ‘80’s. The jazz artists who recorded with CTI included George Benson, Bob James, Hubert Laws, Stanley Turrentine, Ron Cater, Deodato, Antonio Carlos Jobim, and several others. Of which, Freddie Hubbard was one their most successful artists on the label.
By the age of 32 at the end of the ‘60’ decade, Freddie Hubbard was one of the top jazz trumpeters of his time and many consider ever as well. Having performed with Art Blakely and the Jazz Messengers and was one of the most sought after sideman in the ‘60’s. What had escaped Hubbard to this point was the commercial success and fame the likes of Miles Davis and Dizzy Gillespie had achieved.
By 1967, Hubbard had begun to evolve his unique sound that served as a forerunner to the CTI years. Most notably, Hubbard’s release of the Backlash album introduced the tune Little Sunflower and the endearing version of the classic Up Jumped Spring.
At the start of the 1970’s, jazz was being introduced to new sounds entering jazz. Some controversial yet groundbreaking. With the Miles Davis rock-fusion Bitches Brew album shaking the foundations of jazz, other artists began to explore new sounds and arrangements that infused jazz with rock, R&B, soul, and funk.
With these influences brewing, Freddie Hubbard created his own unique sound with the release of the Red Clay album in 1970. In the early ‘70’s, Hubbard followed Red Clay with the CTI recordings of First Light and Sky Dive, as well as, Straight Life. These recordings brought Hubbard the commercial success that had eluded him. And, the recognition from the Grammys in 1971 as First Light won the Grammy for Best Instrumental Jazz Performance.
Here is the tune, First Light, which give you a sense of the Freddie Hubbard CTI Years sound:
Freddie Hubbard also would record with versions of the CTI All-Stars through the ‘70’s and ‘80’s. His recordings with CTI were few but the 40 plus year retrospective from many critics is they are an iconic influence on the history of jazz.
The principal trumpeter for this special concert will be Tim Clarke. Since moving to the WNY area from Eugene, Oregon in 2007, Clarke has become one of the area’s premier trumpet jazz artists. Tim holds a Master of Arts degree in Music Theory and throughout his career has produced original compositions and arrangements. Tim has also been recognized by the JazzBuffalo community in the JazzBuffalo Poll as their choice for top jazz trumpeter.
This will be one special concert that gives notable appreciation to a moment in jazz history. The concert takes place on Friday, September 30th at 8 pm at Pausa Art House. Admission is $10 and $7 for students with a valid ID. Come early and get a seat for this unique event presented by JazzBuffalo in association with Pausa Art House!
Keep Jazz Alive In WNY!!