The Main Stage portion of the Northwest Jazz Festival opened on Friday (August 24th) with pure artistic passion performed by the Christopher Bakriges Trio. Performing as a trio of piano, upright bass, and vibes, the trio presented compelling music that mixed jazz with leanings of classical chamber music.
Two stalwarts of jazz, Avery Sharpe (McCoy Tyner/Art Blakely and the Jazz Messengers) on bass and Jay Hoggard (Dizzy Gillespie/Chico Freeman) on vibes are part of this collaborative musical effort. This meant the audience was treated to nothing short of excellence The trio performed extensively from their “Clear and Present” CD/Album. Original compositions and arrangements that are works of artistic expression. Fusing sound that echoes back to the days of the Modern Jazz Quartet. However, they are original as can be.
Sharpe and Hoggard work well in tandem with Bakriges to accentuate exceptional melodies. Sharpe’s bass solos on tunes like “Curious Birds” and “Door of No Return” set the stage for the trio. Bakriges and Hoggard engage in a fantastic interplay between vibes and piano. Simply stated, this was “beautiful” jazz that is often a rarity in a jazz world predominantly horn-centric. When you are in a state of being clear and present, this is the music and CD to listen to. How lucky we were to hear this music performed live.
Enjoy the beautiful photo gallery from our friend and JazzBuffalo contributor, photographer Jack Zuff: