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On their current release, NINETY MILES, critically acclaimed jazz musicians vibist Stefon Harris, saxophonist David Sánchez, and trumpeter Christian Scott have collaborated to create a distinctly unique collection of songs. Recorded over the span of a week in Havana, Cuba, the U.S.-based trio recruited local Cuban musicians, including pianists Rember Duharte and Harold López-Nussa, to create the nine-song collection. The result is a true Cuban-American musical collaboration that defies political borders. Ninety Miles was released by Concord Jazz in June 2011.
Grammy-nominated vibist STEFON HARRIS has been heralded as “one of the most important young artists in jazz” by the Los Angeles Times, and the New York Times said of Harris, “He swings; and when he plays, he makes you feel good.” Throughout his career, Harris has released seven albums. His most recent album and Concord debut, Urbanus, was nominated for a Grammy and received praise from fans and critics alike. The Wall Street Journal called it “brilliant,” while People magazine gave it three out of four stars.
A recipient of Lincoln Center’s Martin E. Segal Award, Harris earned a B.M. in Classical Music and a M.M. in Jazz Performance from the Manhattan School of Music. Harris teaches at New York University and has been Artist in Residence at Fontana Chamber Arts (Kalamazoo), The Lied Center (Lincoln, NE), and San Francisco Performances. Harris has served on the Executive Board of Directors for Chamber Music America and was the first musician elected to the WBGO-FM Board of Directors. He tours worldwide with his band Blackout and the San Francisco Jazz Collective.
Ask a roomful of jazz fans about Grammy-winning saxophonist DAVID SÁNCHEZ and the ensuing buzz will be filled with exultant praise for one of the finest saxophonists of his generation. The Puerto Rico-born Sánchez has being hailed as “the most profound young tenor saxophonist working today.” World-renowned jazz critic Howard Reich saluted the young bandleader saying, “Technically, tonally, and creatively, he seems to have it all. His sound is never less than plush, his pitch is unerring, his rapid-fire playing is ravishing in its combination of speed, accuracy, and utter evenness of tone.” Such is the acclaim and respect that Sánchez has engendered from critics, music lovers, and fellow artists throughout the world as he continues to push the frontiers of mainstream jazz to incorporate a compelling and rich array of Latin and Afro-Caribbean influences, while remaining true to the tenets of the jazz genre.
Born in Guaynabo, Puerto Rico, Sánchez began playing percussion and drums at age 8 before migrating to tenor saxophone four years later. While a student at La Escuela Libre de Música in San Juan, he also took up soprano and alto saxophones as well as flute and clarinet. The bomba and plena rhythms of Puerto Rico, along with Cuban and Brazilian traditions, were among the biggest influences on Sánchez’s early taste in music. Sonny Rollins, Dexter Gordon, and John Coltrane had the greatest impact on his playing. His most recent Concord release, Cultural Survival, received critical praise, and The New York Times said, “As always, Sánchez plays with unforced authority and a searching, smoldering cadence...”
Trumpeter CHRISTIAN SCOTT is one of music’s most exciting and innovative new talents. The New Orleans native is respected in jazz circles, and his sensibility has led to collaborations and performance gigs with The Roots, Marcus Miller, Mos Def, and Prince, among others. An outstanding feat, Scott landed on Billboard’s “Top Ten to Watch in 2006” list even before his debut and Grammy-nominated album Rewind That was released. His follow-up albums, Anthem (2007), Live in Newport (2008), and Yesterday You Said Tomorrow (2010), have garnered critical praise.
His most recent collection, Yesterday You Said Tomorrow, has received glowing coverage in People magazine, Wall Street Journal, Entertainment Weekly, and MOJO. Scott performed on Jimmy Kimmel Live! and even celebrated the album’s release with a performance alongside The Roots on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon on March 30, 2010. He was handpicked by Thom Yorke to sit in as a guest trumpeter during select dates of the Atoms for Peace tour this past April, and he recently finished working as the voice of the trumpet in the upcoming movie Passion Play, starring Mickey Rourke and Megan Fox. He just finished recording a guest performance for the HBO series Treme, to air in 2011.