No, I wasn't abducted by aliens! (Just responding to a recent email I received prompting me to update my blog.)
Released an excellent CD with Dutch guitarist Marnix Busstra titled: Mike Mainieri/Marnix Busstra Twelve Pieces
.Yep--you can buy here on MM's site! Also a stunning reunion of a group called "L'Image," featuring Warren Bernhardt, David Spinozza, Tony Levin, Steve Gadd, and yours truly. Uh, Uh, Bummer--ACID FLASHBACK! *thought you'd dig that sir Bill Evans (the saxophonist).
A Little History of Jazz in the 60s and 70s
Some history may be due at this juncture. Warren Bernhardt and I met in the early 60s when he first came to NYC from Chicago. He played in some of my quartets and we both hooked up again when we appeared with the flutist, Jeremy Steig & the Satyrs group. Warren also appeared on an album I recorded in 1966 called Journey Through An Electric Tube
which featured Steig, Warren, Sam Brown (guitar), Donald MacDonald (drums), Hal Gaylor (double bass), and Chuck Rainey (electric bass). It was the second of two albums I recorded for Solid State Records; the first was a quartet project featuring Joe Beck (guitar), Dr. Lyne Christie (double bass), and Donald MacDonald (drums).
The core of this group and Jeremy Steig's group grew into a relationship that lasted until this day. Eddie Gomez had also performed with Jeremy Steig and all of us toured with folk singer Tim Hardin in the 1960s. Jeremy Steig and the Satyrs; Larry Coryell and Bob Moses's The Free Spirits
; Gary Burton's quartet; Charles Llyod's quartet; Frank Zappa; Blood, Sweat, and Tears; Steve Marcus's Count Rocks Band; Zawinul's work with Cannonball; Horace Silver's jazz/funk compositions; Lee Morgan's work in the 60s; and Wayne Shorter's Schizophrenia
circa '67 are just a few that influenced Miles Davis to record his heralded album Bitches Brew
. Just as important to the movement was Dave Leibman's cooperative, Free Life Communication, which became an integral part of the fertile New York "loft" jazz scene in the early 1970s.
Of course most critics called this incredible organic period in the 60s and 70s the ultimate demise of jazz! I personally loved it all. To be able to play straight ahead, free jazz, R&B (later called funk), blues, and screaming jazz/rock music was exhilarating!While touring with Tim Hardin, it was not unusual to hear groups like the Charles Lloyd (Keith Jarrett, Ron McClure, and Jack DeJohnette), The Byrds, Jimi Hendrix, Zappa's Mothers of Invention
, The Velvet Underground, or the Grateful Dead playing at the Fillmore or Electric Circus--not just in 'jazz' clubs, but in concerts. I find that the music has come full circle with many of the new groups I've been listening to the last several years. (I'll save that for my next blog.) So, this core of "Satyrs" musicians from the early 60s expanded into a big "Jam" band which began as a rehearsal jam band in the late 60s, which can be heard on a double CD called WHITE ELEPHANT
. Check out the lineup. The history unfolds from its beginnings and then evolves into so many other combinations of musicians that performed in various other groups and still do today. For example, I just saw Steve Gadd's group with Ronnie Cuber, Joey DeFrancesco, and Paul Bollenback. Steve Gadd and Ronnie Cuber both performed on the White Elephant album. Steve Gadd and Eddie Gomez are still working in various combos. The collaboration amongst these musicians and artists and the recorded performances are historic and too extensive to begin to list on this blog.
In 1972, when Bernhardt, Levin, Gadd, and I all were living in Woodstock, NY (yes we were hippies too) we began rehearsing in my barn for several months and started playing gigs in the area. We got as far as Rochester, NY
. David Spinozza joined the group about a year or two after our initial debut in '72. Strangely enough, we never recorded an album during that period although some of the compositions we played I did record on two solo albums, Love Play
So last year (that would be 35 years later) while we were still vertical, we finally released a CD titled L'Image 2.0
, performed at the Iridium in NYC last February (our debut -:), and subsequently toured Japan last September combined with another hit at the Iridium in NYC later that month. We have two live albums and a double CD in the can and are planning a worldwide tour in the fall of 2010 and another studio recording slated upon our return from the tour.2010 Plans So Far
Upcoming NYC Records Releases
- -Hitting the road for a tour with my Scandinavian brothers, Bendik Hofseth, Bugge Wesseltoft, Lars Danielsson, and Audun Kleive in March
- -Some gigs in July with the Mike Mainieri/Marnix Busstra Quartet with Eric van der Westen (double bass) and Pieter Bast (drums)
- -Some Steps Ahead gigs planned for August
- -A big band recording with the University of Missouri under the direction of Arthur White slated for May. I've done two concerts and workshops with Arthur, and I'm looking forward to recording my compositions with his very hip big band.
- -While I'm at it, kudos to Chuck Owen who recorded the music of Michael Brecker. The CD is titled Chuck Owen & The Jazz Surge: Performing the Compositions of Michael Brecker. I was honored to be a part of this project and also to perform with Chuck's big band. We will be selling this release on our site in the near future.
For Sale on Our Website
- -Mike Mainieri Crescent featuring Charlie Mariano (alto saxophone) and Deiter Ilg (double bass)
- -Mike Mainieri/Marnix Busstra Quarte Live in Europe (2-CD set)
- -Mike Mainieri Lush Life (solo album)
Check out the full catalog
FYI: I've combined the www.nycrecords.com
site and the www.mikemainieri.com
site as one site. So either URL will bring you to the Mike Mainieri home page
. The NYC Records
logo appears on the upper right side and all of the NYC Records releases are posted on the Music section