Billy Hart Lineup, June 5

Sunday: The Billy Hart Quartet and Oceans of  Time

Billy Hart by George Wells smallJune 5 – Sunday
Jackson Theater
4400 Day School Place, Santa Rosa
7:00 p.m. | $65 | $45 | $25 Reserved seating

Sponsors: Arbor Bench Vineyards, North Coast Brewing Cº., Young’s Market Cº



Sunday starts out with The Billy Hart Quartet, the drummer’s current working band, which draws on a lineup representing the best of the current New York jazz sound – rhythmically adventurous, deeply thoughtful, emotionally probing, quietly fiery. The players are the unpredictable pianist Ethan Iverson (of the Bad Plus), first-call bassist Ben Street, cerebrally swinging tenor man Mark Turner, and Hart, the same personnel found on the ECM release One is the Other.

Mark TurnerMark Turner

In a career that spans two decades and encompasses a broad array of musical ventures, saxophonist Mark Turner has emerged as a towering presence in the jazz community. Turner grew up surrounded by music:  “There always was a lot of R&B and jazz and soul and gospel going on in the house all the time,” he recalls.   “I was intrigued by jazz, and I was intrigued by the whole history of jazz music and African-American culture, as well as the music itself.” His immersion has paid off:  With a distinctive, personal tone, singular improvisational skills and an innovative, challenging compositional approach, Turner has earned a far-reaching reputation as one of jazz’s most original and influential musical forces.

Ben Street

Ben Street studied the acoustic bass with Dave Holland and Weather Report bassist Miroslav Vitous at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston. He moved to New York City from Maine in 1991, and since has played and toured with an alphabetical array of musicians, often with Billy Hart.

Ethan Iverson

Ethan Iverson is best known as one-third of The Bad Plus, a game-changing collective with Reid Anderson and David King. The New York Times called TBP “…Better than anyone at melding the sensibilities of post-60’s jazz and indie rock.”.Iverson also participates in Billy Hart quartet with Mark Turner and Ben Street and occasionally performs with an elder statesman like Albert “Tootie” Heath or Ron Carter.


Wrapping up the Billy extravaganza is Oceans of Time, which made a record of the same name in 1996, capturing a bit of the energy of early fusion bands like Weather Report, The Mahavishnu Orchestra and, of course, Mwandishi, the seminal Herbie Hancock band that featured Billy (and also Eddie Henderson of Enchance). Billy’s generous drumming with Oceans of Time, lays down a magic carpet for local tenor sax hero Craig Handy (replacing John Stubblefield, RIP), tenor-sax wonder Chris Potter, dazzling violinist Mark Feldman, explosive guitarist David “Fuze” Fiuczynski, propulsive pianist David Kikoski, bass stalwart Cecil McBee, funk-forward drummer Lorca Hart, and Billy Hart too – a father-and-son drum dream team.

chris potterChris Potter

A world-class soloist, potent improviser, accomplished composer and formidable bandleader, saxophonist Chris Potter has emerged as a leading light of his generation. DownBeat called him “One of the most studied (and copied) saxophonists on the planet” while Jazz Times identified him as “a figure of international renown.” Jazz sax elder statesman Dave Liebman called him simply, “one of the best musicians around,” a sentiment shared by the readers of DownBeat in voting him second only to tenor sax great Sonny Rollins in the magazine’s 2008 Readers Poll.

Cecil McBee

Cecil McBeeOne of post-bop’s most advanced and versatile bassists, Cecil McBee has played with an enormous variety of artists, and is just as capable in a solo or group improvisational context as he is at offering thoughtfully advanced background support. After he played with Dinah Washington in 1959, he moved to Detroit to make inroads into the city’s burgeoning jazz scene. From there he launched into Paul Winter’s folk-jazz ensemble, Charles Lloyd’s 60s stardom, and supporting the likes of Pharoah Sanders, Yusef Lateef, Alice Coltrane, Art Pepper and Chico Freeman.

Craig Handy

craig handySaxophonist Craig Handy is a musician’s musician. Those “in the know” know about him, which is why he’s been a first call player in New York for over two decades. He is a careful, thoughtful improviser—expansive and precise.  While he derives portions of his vocabulary from the’Trane/Shorter axis, there is a shrewd depth and broadness to his playing. A contemporary mainstream hard-bopper, capable of screaming climaxes when required, he reveals a solid familiarity with both the inside and outside. His tone is big and disciplined, tender on ballads, bluesy, and his own — and he can testify.

David Fiuczynski

David FiuczyfynskiThough generally thought of as a jazz musician,  guitarist David Fiuczynski describes himself as “a jazz-musician who doesn’t want to play just jazz.”  Many of his albums have thematic material that ties them to one or more additional genres. Screaming Headless Torsos, for instance, emphasizes a jazz-funk fusion, while Hasidic New Wave blends jazz with Semitic and African music; 2000’s JazzPunk is a recording of standards and covers written by his idols and mentors, in which each tune was reworked in distinctive musical combinations.

Mark Feldman

Virtuosic violinist Mark Feldman is classically trained, but known for his performances with the top improvisers and composers of the ’80s and ’90s in avant-garde jazz and new music. He toured extensively with Pharoah Sanders, trombonist Ray Anderson, and Bill Frisell, and has made over 45 jazz albums as a sideman with everyone from Lee Konitz to They Might Be Giants. Once a Nashville studio musician, he has appeared on over 200 recordings, including those of Willie Nelson, Johnny Cash, even TV evangelist Jimmy Swaggert.

David Kikoski

David Kikoski learned piano from his father and played with him in bars as a teenager. He’s come a long way: Kikoski won a 2011 Grammy Award with the Mingus Big Band for the Best Live Jazz Ensemble Album, “Live at the Jazz Standard”. He also had a Grammy nomination with Roy Haynes for the “Birds of a Feather.” As an affecting modernist, Kikoski distills the best in jazz and popular music and infuses every song with attention-garnering brilliance.

June 5 – Sunday
Jackson Theater
4400 Day School Place, Santa Rosa
7:00 p.m. | $65 | $45 | $25 Reserved seating