New Orleans Trumpeter Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah to present “Stretch Music” at the VJC on Saturday, January 14th, 2017
The Vermont Jazz Center presents Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah’s Stretch Music on Saturday, January, 14th, 2017 at 8 PM. Scott is one of the leading voices of his generation – a composer, a bandleader, a record producer, an educator, an articulate activist championing racial equality and prison reform; he is an eloquent speaker whose goals include “reaching a consensus to move forward.”
Scott aTune Adjuah will be performing on trumpet as well as two custom-designed horns: a reverse flugel and a sirenette. He will appear with the same group that plays on his most recent and highly acclaimed CD Stretch Music. The ensemble includes renowned young artist Elena Pinderhughes (flute), Logan Richardson (alto saxophone), Lawrence Fields (acoustic piano and Fender Rhodes), Kris Funn (upright and electric bass) and Corey Fonville on drums.
Aiden Levy, writing for New York's Village Voice, summarized Scott aTunde Adjuah’s chameleon-like ability to represent his generation: "Scott jumps across a range of styles and sounds, channeling everything from hip-hop to On the Corner-style funk and African rhythms. … firmly establish[ing] him as one of the new young lions of jazz." His 2015 release, Stretch Music, demonstrates Scott aTunde Adjuah’s mature musical concept. He explains "I have heard some describe our approach as 'stretch,' or calling what we play, 'stretch music.' It’s true that we are attempting to stretch—not replace—jazz's rhythmic, melodic and harmonic conventions to encompass as many musical forms/languages/cultures as we can. My core belief is that no form of expression is more valid than any other. This belief has compelled me to attempt to create a sound that is genre blind in its acculturation of other musical forms, languages, textures, conventions and processes. This is done as a means of extending the dialogue of the human condition across the lines of cultural and genre based barriers."
Like two other headliners in this year’s VJC Series (Chico Freeman and Adam O'Farrill), Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah is a scion of a serious jazz family. His uncle is the celebrated saxophonist Donald Harrison with whom he apprenticed as a youth growing up in New Orleans. Under Harrison's mentorship, Scott attended the New Orleans Center for the Creative Arts and internalized the skills required to master his instrument and the jazz language. He also learned how to shape a solo, arrange for different instruments, develop his own voice and engage an audience. Growing up in New Orleans he played in brass bands and funk bands, he marched in parades and funerals and absorbed a direct link to the fundamental historical tradition that predates jazz. A young Scott was initiated into the tradition of the Black Mardi Gras Indians at age six by his late grandfather Donald Harrison, Sr., a legendary Mardi Gras Indian chief of four tribes. Donald Lambreaux, one of the characters of the HBO series “Tremé,” conflates the lives of Scott and his uncle Donald Harrison, Jr. Scott further refined his abilities while earning two degrees at Berklee School of Music (which he attended on a full scholarship) studying with the likes of Gary Burton.
The 33 year-old Scott aTunde Adjuah has released eight recordings as a leader. His first Concord Release, Rewind That, earned him a Grammy nomination. He has worked and recorded with a wide range of collaborators including McCoy Tyner, Eddie Palmieri, Mos Def, Mulgrew Miller, Donald Harrison, Nnenna Freelon, Grace Kelly, Ben Williams, Prince, Randy Newman, DJ Logic, David Benoit, Dave Koz, Taylor Eigsti, Steffon Harris, the Next Collective, Harvey Mason and many others. He has been active as a composer for film, including projects with his twin brother Kiel Adrian Scott. He has also evolved into an in-demand producer recognized for his flawless aesthetic choices and ability to flow between genres. He has produced numerous recordings including the most recent recording of VJC alumni Sarah Charles.
Part of Scott's aTunde Adjuah’s allure is the strength of his message and his ability to clearly explain complex, highly charged concepts with a non-threatening, well-informed voice. He uses music as a medium to express his powerful feelings regarding current and historical events. His compositions speak for the disinfranchised by bravely taking on topics such as abortion, prison reform, police brutality and gay marriage. He conveys these ideas programmatically over compelling, melodically driven, high quality music. His 2007 record, Anthem, served as his commentary on Hurricane Katrina and the negative effect it had on the neighborhood where he grew up (the Lower 9th Ward) in New Orleans. The titles of his 2010 release, Yesterday You Said Tomorrow, include: “American’t,” “The Roe Effect,” “Angoloa, LA and the 13th Amendment,” and “K.K.K.P.D” (Ku Klux Klan Police Department, recounts his own personal experience with police racism in New Orleans). For this powerful recording, Scott refers to the 1960s masterworks of Coltrane, Miles, Hendrix, Dylan and Mingus that brought attention to the injustices of that era. He uses their inspiration as a springboard to compose work that makes a statement about our own times. Scott stated that he wanted to “create a record that has all the qualities of the documents of that era as they relate to our time by creating a palette that referenced the depth and conviction of the '60s in the context of subject matter and sound, but done in a way that illuminates the fact that my generation has had the opportunity to study the contributions of our predecessors, thus making our decision making process musically different."
In every concert, Scott aTunde Adjuah discusses the important issues of our time, but he also walks the walk. For example, he works with the Guardians Institute, a nonprofit organization/museum, which was set up by his grandmother to improve access to quality education for the youth of New Orleans. The Guardians Institute donates books (over 35,000), hold reading circles and has created a reliable infrastructure that is “dedicated to the development of our youth through literacy, New Orleans’ indigenous cultural arts and West African and New World oral traditions.” Nearly every public school in New Orleans has been converted to a charter school, and, Scott aTunde Adjuah says, “If you look at a lot of these charter schools, they’re just like precursors to a penal colony. They’re being taught how to obey, period. You can see these kids being turned off from school, and it’s heartbreaking. We let them know that they shouldn’t be admonished for wanting to be smart and have information.”
About the Band:
The Front Line:
Elena Pinderhughes: Flute. 20 years old, Pinderhughes has won numerous awards for “best soloist” at festivals and from Downbeat magazine. A 2013 YoungArts Gold Award recipient and U.S Presidential Scholar in the Arts, she was a member of the Grammy Band and Choir, San Francisco Youth Symphony Orchestra, and Young Musicians Program. Elena has performed at Carnegie Hall, the White House, the Kennedy Center, SF Jazz Center, Yoshi’s Jazz Club, and other prestigious venues. She has performed with Herbie Hancock, Hubert Laws, Kenny Barron, Esperanza Spalding, Ambrose Akinmusire, Vijay Iyer, Christian Scott, Carlos Santana, Orlando “Maraca” Valle, Stefon Harris, Joshua Redman, Josh Groban, and others. She is cited as “the most exciting jazz flautist to have emerged in years” by The Guardian.
Logan Richardson: Alto Saxophone. Mentored in home city of Kansas City, Missouri by Jay McShann and Claude "Fiddler" William. Performed, toured and record professionally with Joe Chambers, Butch Morris, Stefon Harris, Ambrose Akinmusire, Greg Tardy, Nasheet Waits, Michelle Rosewoman, Billy Hart, and Jason Moran. In 2006, Logan released his debut album, Cerebral Flow, and followed it up with Ethos in 2009. In 2011, Logan moved from New York to Paris. In 2012, Logan collaborated with Concord Records and soon after released the project NEXT Collective. He has recently recorded his third album, SHIFT, with Pat Metheny, Jason Moran, Nasheet Waits and Harish Raghavan.
The Rhythm Section:
Lawrence Fields: Piano. Originally from St. Louis, Fields has recorded or toured with Jeff “Tain” Watts, Alvin Batiste, Jason Palmer, Warren Wolf, Nicholas Payton, Branford Marsalis, Steve Slagle, Joe Lovano, Bill Steward and Dave Douglas.
Kris Funn: Bass. Funn tours with Kenny Garrett and has performed at major jazz festivals on six continents with artists including Bruce Williams, Nicholas Payton, Pharoah Sanders, Jeff Majors, Jeff Lorber, and many others.
Corey Fonville: Drums. After completing his studies at The Brubeck Institute, Fonville travelled the world with notable artists such as Nicholas Payton, Jacky Terrasson, and Christian Scott.
Come listen to Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah and his young, top-notch band on January 14th at the Vermont Jazz Center. This is a rare opportunity for those in the Vermont community to hear a group that stands up for our fundamental human rights while playing music that is at a remarkably high level. We are indeed privileged. It is anticipated that this concert will sell out quickly, so purchase your tickets early.
The Vermont Jazz Center presents Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah’s Stretch Music on Saturday, November 14th at 8:00 PM and is especially grateful for sponsorship of this event by Dave Ellis of Ellis Music and Roger Wilkens of Clear Solutions. Their contributions made this concert possible and we are deeply grateful. The VJC is also thankful for the ongoing support from the Vermont Arts Council, the National Endowment for the Arts, and The Hampton Inn of Brattleboro. VJC publicity is underwritten by the Brattleboro Reformer, WVPR, WVEW, WFCR and Chris Lenois of WKVT’s Green Mountain Mornings.
Tickets for Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah and Stretch Music at the Vermont Jazz Center are $20+ general admission, $15 for students with I.D. (contact VJC about educational discounts); available at In the Moment in Brattleboro, or online at www.vtjazz.org, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Tickets can also be reserved by calling the Vermont Jazz Center ticket line, 802-254-9088, ext. 1. Handicapped access is available by calling the VJC at 802 254 9088.
VIDEOS including Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah
Here’s a video of Spy Boy, Christian with his twin brother, Kiel in full regalia: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2UMoVBbt9Jg
Contact Eugene Uman, Vermont Jazz Center, 802 254 9088, email@example.com
Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah presents Stretch Music at the Vermont Jazz Center
Press Release date: January 1st, 2016
Who: Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah presents Stretch Music at the Vermont Jazz Center. With Christian Scott ATunde Adjuah, trumpet, reverse flugel, sirenette; Elena Pinderhughes, flute; Logan Richardson, alto saxophone; Lawrence Fields, acoustic piano and Fender Rhodes; Kris Funn, upright and electric bass; Corey Fonville, drums.
What: Stretch Music
When: Saturday, January 14th, 2017 at 8:00 PM
Where: The Vermont Jazz Center, 72 Cotton Mill Hill, #222, Brattleboro, VT 05301
Tickets available: online at www.vtjazz.org, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, phone 802 254 9088, in person at In The Moment, Main St., Brattleboro, VT.