Archive for Cassity

Blindfold Bootleg Series: Saxophonist Sharel Cassity

Posted in Improvisation, Musical Influences with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on February 14, 2015 by pogo56

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Multi-reedist, Venus Japan Records recording artist, and band leader Sharel (pronounced sha-REL) Cassity is a constant star on the rise on all fronts in the music scene since graduating from the Julliard School recently.  She’s performed with a laundry-list of music icons and has been inducted into the Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame back in 2011.  I had the pleasure of hearing her play live for the first time several years ago at Birdland as a member of Nicholas Payton Studio TV Orchestra and recently got to play with her in Darcy James Argue’s Secret Society.  Here’s what Sharel had to  say after hearing the examples:

Example 1: Marcus Strickland live at the Regattabar Cambridge Ma 2008,

1. Marcus Strickland

After: Marcus is one of my favorite modern saxophone players. His sound is unmistakeable, he’s not afraid to play with soul, rhythm and blues; and he doesn’t need to lean on pyrotechnics or math to make music. An incredible musician who knows the history on his instrument but draws from current popular music to stay relevant and fresh.

Example 2: Myron Walden live at Fat Cat NYC (year unknown)

2. Myron Walden

After: Alto or tenor–NO ONE else plays eighth notes, sinuous phrases or screams like that on the horn! Also one of my very favorite modern musicians.

Example 3: Logan Richardson live at the Duc du Lombards Paris 2013

3. I like how this person is taking their time with developing melodic statements…but I don’t know who this is. I hear some Trane like phrases, I always love that on alto. I also feel like I’m hearing someone who has checked out a lot of Miguel Zenon or someone influenced by Greg Osby, in their sound particularly.

After: Logan!! I thought of him almost immediately because of the sound, but right away decided it was someone younger because they weren’t playing as much as I would expect from Logan. I’m used to hearing Logan play with a lot more of the rhythmic and harmonic complexities that were touched on in this clip, and also more extreme types of phrases on the horn. To my fault I haven’t heard him very much throughout the past 10 years, although he is a player that always inspired and fascinated me during my early years in school.

Example 4: Ravi Coltrane live at the Jazz Standard 2013

4. My first thought was Joe Lovano, but then I realized it wasn’t…not sure on this one but sounds great. 

After: Oh, Ravi! I got into his earlier recordings a lot and have heard him live a few times, but it’s been awhile. Loved this track.

Example 5: George Garzone live at the Museum Boston (year unknown)

5.Very familiar sound and I’m sure I’ll kick myself for not recognizing it, but I can’t put my finger on it!! Very warm and woody sound; reminds me of Trane, Wayne, even Getz at times. First to come to mind is Dayna Stephens, or maybe JD Allen in the way they are starting and ending notes and in nuance–but I can’t say.
After: Ha! I used to go hear George at the Lizard Lounge every week when I lived in Boston in 1999-2000! What an amazing player. I always regretted not taking his class later while I was at the New School, but I wasn’t ready at the time.

Example 6:  Bill McHenry Live at the Village Vanguard Nyc (year unknown)

6. Not sure who this is, but it’s hip.  Nice harmonic concept…the vibrato sounds familiar but I can’t place it.
After: Definitely someone I need to check out!

Example 7:  Tim Warfield live at Scullers (year unknown)

7. Hard to tell from this recording, but whoever it is sounds great.… A phrase at the beginning reminded me of something Stacy Dillard might play but I know it’s not him. Now it’s reminding me of Branford Marsalis, and I also feel I’m hearing some Kenny Garrett (or maybe that’s Brecker) influences.
After: I also need to check out Tim more, there are so many great players! I love it! 🙂
Please keep up with Sharel’s upcoming events at her website