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Conference Call: Poetry In Motion (Clean Feed)

The first studio album in 8 years from pianist Michael Jefry Stevens and bassist Joe Fonda, with Gebhard Ullman and George Schuller, performing accomplished and impressive modern improvisation.
 

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product information:


UPC: 5609063001181

Label: Clean Feed
Catalog ID: CF118
Squidco Product Code: 10267

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2008
Country: Portugal
Packaging: Cardstock Gatefold Sleeve
Recorded September 7, 2005 and September 28, 2006 at Peter Karl Recording Studio, Brooklyn, NY .


Personnel:

Gebhard Ullmann-soprano, tenor saxophones, bass clarinet

Michael Jefry Stevens-piano

Joe Fonda-doublebass

George Schuller-drums, percussion and hammer whistle

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Artist Biographies:

"Born on November 2, 1957 in Bad Godesberg, Germany saxophonist (tenor and soprano), bass clarinetist, bass flutist and composer Gebhard Ullmann studied medecine and music in Hamburg and moved to Berlin in 1983.Since then he has recorded more than 50 CDs as a leader or co-leader for prestigious labels such as Soul Note (Italy), Leo Records (UK), Between The Lines (Germany), CIMP (USA), NotTwo Records (Poland), Clean Feed (Portugal) Unit Records (Switzerland) and others.

For many years he is considered one of the leading personalities in both the Berlin and international music scenes and has received numerous awards for his work including the Julius Hemphill Composition Award in two categories ('99), the Deutsche Phonoakademie award ('83), one of the first SWF Jazz Awards ('87) and the nomination best-jazz-CD-of-the-year by the German Schallplattenkritik for his CD Tá Lam in 1995.

His CDs Final Answer (2002) The Bigband Project (2004) New Basement Research (2008) News? No News! (2010) Mingus! (2011) Clarinet Trio 4 (2012) were all listed in Downbeat Magazine among the best CDs of those years. The CD Transatlantic received the prestigious Choc of the French Jazz Magazine in 2012. Since 2005 Gebhard Ullmann is listed in the Downbeat Critics Poll, 2015 for the first time in three categories.

Since 1993 Ullmann was a recording artist for Soul Note and has been living in New York City and Berlin. He has toured with his music throughout Europe as well as Africa, the Middle East, Canada, New Zealand, the USA, South East Asia, Mexico and China and performed on most of the world's most prestigious jazz festivals."

-Gebhard Ullmann Website (http://gebhard-ullmann.com/GU.html)
8/5/2020

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

"Over the past 40 years Pianist/Composer Michael Jefry Stevens has been associated with some of the most important figures in modern jazz. Beginning with his first CD release in 1991 as a member of Mark Whitecage's Liquid Time Group, Mr. Stevens has been in the forefront of the NYC and international improvised music scene. Between 1988-1990 he co-led the now legendary "Mosaic Sextet" with Dave Douglas. This group included Mark Feldman on violin, Michael Rabinowitz on bassoon, and the rhythm section of Harvey Sorgen on drums and Joe Fonda on bass. Their "Today This Moment" CD release on Konnex Records and re-release on GM Recordings is considered one of the classic modern jazz recordings of the 1990s and was voted one of the best 1000 jazz recordings by the 2011 Penguin Guide to Jazz. This rhythm section went on to become the nucleus for the Fonda/Stevens Group. Since the quartet's inception in 1992, the Fonda/Stevens Group has released 14 CDS, repeatedly toured Europe and is one of the most successful working modern jazz groups on the international scene. Mr. Stevens also began a very fruitful and fulfilling relationship with Leo Records with his duo "Haiku" CD release in 1994, featuring Mark Feldman on violin. These piano/violin improvisations proved to be a pivotal link between Mr. Stevens' work in both the composed and improvised music worlds. Mr. Stevens has currently released nine CDS on Leo Records, including "Elements" with bassist Dominic Duval, and "Twelve Improvisations" with the Fonda/Stevens Group. To date he has released over 100 CDS.

Michael Jefry Stevens has composed over 340 works for various ensembles, including big band, string quartet, music for voice, music for solo instruments, various small groups and his latest ensemble, the 15 piece Mountain Chamber Jazz Ensemble. Mr. Stevens was the Margaret Lee Crofts Fellow at "The MacDowell Colony" in the summer of 2000, received 2nd prize in the prestigious Monaco International Jazz Composition in 1998, and was a composer fellow at the Centrum Arts Colony in Port Townsend, WA in June 2005. In 2007 he received a Professional Development Support Grant from the Tennessee Art's Commission. He has been Composer-in-Residence at Virginia Intermont College 1999 where he scored music in collaboration with the dance department and was composer-in-residence at the Oxford Music Academy Summer workshop in 2002. In 2009 Mr. Stevens was named a Steinway Performing Artist, the first ever for the City of Memphis. In 2016 he was voted "Best Composer" in Western North Carolina by the readers of the Mountain Xpress and received a "Regional Project Artist Grant" from the Toe River Arts Council. He currently resides in Black Mountain, NC. He has been on the performing artist roster of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts since 1998. In 1999 Mr. Stevens began the Conference Call Quartet, featuring his partner of many years, bassist Joe Fonda, in collaboration with German saxophonist Gebhard Ullmann and Dieter Ulrich on drums. This quartet has released 7 cd's, with an 8th CD scheduled for release in early 2020.

More recent projects include the "Core-tet" featuring Dame Evelyn Glennie on percussion, Serbian violist Szilard Mezei and Danish Guitarist Jon Hemmersam, the "Eastern Boundary" featuring Hungarian drummer Balazs Bagyi and Hungarian saxophonist Mihaly Borbely, his partnership with New Orleans horn man and vocalist Brian "Breeze" Cayolle, and the "Generations Quartet" featuring saxophonist Oliver Lake.

Michael Jefry Stevens is truly a believer in the global music community and a vocal exponent of an international music. He is a member of the IASJ (International Association of Schools of Jazz), ISIM (International Society of Improvised Music), SCI (the Society of Composers), and the AAPF (Asheville Area Piano forum)."

-Michael Jefry Stevens Website (https://www.michaeljefrystevens.com/biography.html)
8/5/2020

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.
track listing:


1. The Shining Star 5:55

2. Poetry in Motion 6:17

3. The Path 4:18

4. Next Step 10:26

5. Back to School 9:28

6. Quirky Waltz 8:38

7. Desert... Bleue... East 7:18
sample the album:








descriptions, reviews, &c.

"If the axis of this band - now commemorating its 10th year - is defined by two of its most complicit collaborators, pianist Michael Jefry Stevens and bassist Joe Fonda, co-founders of the Fonda/Stevens Group, then the involvement of woodwind player Gebhard Ullmann and drummer George Schuller reinforces the universal idea of group interdependence. However, there's still enough room for each to add their own unique concepts to an ever-evolving and most rewarding project. And what a project it is, in some ways tied to the late Sixties sound of the BYG free jazz records, while in other ways teetering on the edge of the vast unknown personified, for instance, by the recent developments of the Wayne Shorter Quartet.

With original compositions offered by all four members and special attention paid to timbre and harmonic integration, there's a certain bold affirmation about the music in Poetry in Motion revealing a relaxed sense of purpose and musical fortitude. All four are active in both mainstream and avant-fields and all have notable CVs: Stevens's toe-dipping classical constructions, Fonda's open inventiveness (of course, stemming from his Anthony Braxton tutelage), Ullmann's extended reed skills and Schuller's knit-work craftsmanship - all combining to create music that swings outwardly, while at the same time, allows the listener to follow its inner abstractions.

The liner notes of the CD speak of the joy, mystery and wonder felt by the performers during the recording sessions (their first studio recording in eight years), and we can surely recognize that essence. It's a measure of true artistic accomplishment when music so demanding can touch an emotional thread, proving that even a street full of concrete and glass can turn green and lush. Poetry in motion, indeed."-Clean Feed

Related Categories of Interest:


Clean Feed
Improvised Music
Jazz
European Improv, Free Jazz & Related
Quartet Recordings


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