Saturday, May 25, 2013

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Fly

Song:Lady B
Album:Sky & Country

Back in the 90s, tenor sax player Mark Turner had a contract with Warner Bros. and looked like he was going to be the next big thing in jazz. But he stopped recording solo and instead has had great success recording as Fly with bassist Larry Grenadier and drummer Jeff Ballard. The history of pianoless trios in jazz goes back to the 50s with Gerry Mulligan and Chet Baker. It seems to be a California thing. Turner was born in Ohio but grew up in Southern California. His main influences are John Coltrane and Warne Marsh. He studied at Berklee and moved to New York in 1990. Turner first recorded as a leader in 1995 and recorded four CDs for Warner Bros. from 1998-2001. It was around this time that he met Larry Grenadier and Jeff Ballard. They both grew up in California and played together in high school. At the time they were working with Chick Corea. But Grenadier and Ballard are best known as the long time rhythm section for pianist Brad Mehldau. Fly recorded for Savoy Jazz in 2004 and then signed with ECM Records for the 2009 CD Sky & Country. The CD did well on the jazz charts. Their latest CD Year Of the Snake was released last year. Though all three guys do other things, Fly seems to have become their main band. Turner also records with the SF Jazz Collective. Grenadier and Ballard continue to record and tour with Mehldau. Grenadier also works with his jazz singer wife Rebecca Martin and Ballard works with Joshua Redman. And they all work regularly as sidemen. Jazz fans should check out Fly. Here's Fly performing Lady B at Jazzbaltica in Salzau, Germany July 4, 2010.

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