Dave Douglas

Douglas 2Dave Douglas is one of the most innovative trumpet players and composers on the music scene. He has been actively performing in New York since the 1980s and has since come into his own as one of the most eclectic musicians in jazz today. Much of his music does not fall into the traditional categories of swing, bop, cool, modal, etc. Douglas does not hesitate to look at the world around him and borrow anything he finds interesting and then transform it into something new and original. The traditional music of Eastern Europe, the music of Bartok and Stravinsky, brass bands, free form, hard bop, and 20th century string quartets can all be found in his music.

Dave Douglas - Episode 1

On this podcast I will examine a number of recordings from his first 2 albums that featured violin, cello, bass, and drums. This unique group really stretches the boundaries of what is considered to be jazz.
CompositionArtistAlbumYear
Loco MadiDave Douglas Parallel Worlds1993
Parallel WorldsDave DouglasParallel Worlds1993
Ballad in Which MacHeath Asks Everyone to Forgive HImDave DouglasParallel Worlds1993
MirrorsDave DouglasFive1995
SevenDave Douglas Five1995
Who KnowsDave Douglas Five1995

Dave Douglas - Episode 2

Dave Douglas has been interested in the music of Eastern Europe, including music of the Balkan countries and klezmer music. Douglas, together with one of his long time collaborators, alto saxophonist John Zorn, has been able to combine this exotic sounding and highly rhythmic music with free jazz as played by the Ornette Coleman Quartet in the early 1960’s. The result is infectious. In the mid 1990’s Douglas formed another group that he named the Tiny Bell Trio that consisted of Douglas on trumpet, Brad Shepik on guitar and Jim black on drums. Their music was also influenced by the sound eastern European music. The unusual instrumentation made for very interesting textures and with a great deal of freedom. On Charms of the Night Sky he replaces the guitar and drums with violin, bass, and accordion. The haunting sound of this combination of musicians is unique in all of modern jazz.
CompositionArtistAlbumYear
TzofehMasada/John ZornMasada, Vol. 1: Alef1994
ZelahMasada/John ZornMasada, Vol. 1: Alef1994
Red EmmaDave DouglasThe Tiny Bell Trio1993
ShardsDave DouglasThe Tiny Bell Trio1993
Sam HillDave DouglasSongs for Wandering Souls1999
Ferrous Dave DouglasSongs for Wandering Soulds1999
Charms of the Night SkyDave DouglasCharms of the Night Sky1998
Facing WestDave Douglas Charms of the Night Sky1998

Dave Douglas - Episode 3

The recordings on this podcast use more traditional instrumentation and sound more like post-hard bop. The instrumentation is generally a standard quartet or quintet, but the music remains fresh and innovative---just what you would expect from Dave Douglas. He carefully chooses sidemen who bring their own stamp of individuality to the performances.
CompositionArtistAlbumYear
Leap of FaithDave DouglasLeap of Faith1998
Euro DisneyDave DouglasLeap of Faith1998
EverymanDave DouglasMagic Triangle 1997
CoasterDave DouglasMagic Triangle1997
Roses BlueDave DouglasMoving Portrait1998
Blue HeavenDave Douglas Soul on Soul1996
Elks ClubDave DouglasMeaning and Mystery2006
Rock of BillyDave DouglasStrange Liberation2004