2015 Healdsburg Jazz Festival – Day 9
Cables, Harper, Harrison, Hart, Henderson, McBee & Weiss
When: Saturday, June 6
Where: Raven Theater, 115 North Street, Healdsburg
Time: 7:30 pm
Reserved Tickets: $65 | $45
Event Sponsor: Voigt Family Sculpture Foundation
There are all-star groups, and then there are all-star groups, the kind which transcend the sometimes transitory nature of casually-joined gatherings of greats. A primary case-in-point in terms of the latter, stronger model: The Cookers, an aptly-named, cross-generational band of hot, name players in the harp bop mode, with a strong sense of identity, both as individuals and as an ensemble team.
SPECIAL OFFER: Want to stay in Healdsburg for just one night for the Cookers Concert? We have a hotel room available for Saturday, June 6th. This is rare offer for a one-night only hotel room in Healdsburg; all hotels usually require a two-night stay, but we have the chance to offer a room for just this one night. It is at the Dry Creek Inn in the new wing, Villa Tuscana. Cost per night is $296 plus tax. (If you want to stay Sunday night, that night will be an additional $199 plus tax.) Contact us now to reserve this room!
Organized by trumpeter, arranger, composer and all-around situation-maker David Weiss, the band taps the sagely, hard-swinging energies of vibrant veterans Cecil McBee on bass, drummer Billy Hart and pianist George Cables, duly cooking with spirit and wisdom behind the horn-based front line of trumpeters Weiss and Eddie Henderson, and saxophonists Billy Harper and Donald Harrison.
Each horn player brings his own special flavor, and distinctive instrumental prowess to his music, from proudly New Orleans-ian Harrrison to Houston-to-NYC modal and Coltrane-esque Harper. Henderson has his own unique story, as a San Franciscan who followed a personal fusion path in the ‘70s along with straighter jazz impulses, returning to the acoustic, hard bop jazz cause with renewed fervor after mixing music with his “other” calling, medicine.
If the musical language at the core is an extension of the driving hard bop sound of the ‘50s and ‘60s, the Cookers are stirring in ingredients and modern-day spices of their own devising. Critics have been duly impressed, especially with the latest of now four albums in the Cookers discography, Time and Time Again (Motéma). In Downbeat, Ed Enright wrote “This all-star septet deals in hard-bop like no other working band today, and Time and Time Again is its most ambitious outing to date,” while, the British Jazzwise magazine, Tony Hall stated simply “this really is the best working band anywhere at the moment… this record is what jazz should always be about.” More emphatically, iTunes deemed the latest project “Jazz Album of the Year.”
As the headlining act of the festival’s second weekend, commanding the high profile Saturday night slot, The Cookers is poised to capture head, heart and soul, with a sound respectfully steeped in history and yet vividly of the spontaneous, felt moment.