THE THURMAN BARKER QUARTET WILL PERFORM AT BARD COLLEGE ON WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 11 Concert will feature music from Barker's recent recording Time Factor
ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON, N.Y.-The Thurman Barker Quartet-guitarist James Emery, pianist Rob Schwimmer, bassist Jerome Harris, and percussionist Barker-will perform in concert at Bard College on Wednesday, December 11. The program, open to the public without charge, will begin at 8:00 p.m. in the Old Gym.
The program will feature performances of works from Barker's recent CD Time Factor. "The music on the recording was inspired by time," says Barker. "We all work for quality time, but in the process of giving and receiving, we all become slaves of the time factor. We like to believe that what we need more of is time for love, but what we really need is a time-out, which we never get." The quartet will perform tunes including "Quality Time," "Obsession," "Time Factor," "Time Out," "Overtime" (all composed by Barker); "Storm Warning" (composed by Rob Schwimmer); and "A Time for Love" (composed by Johnny Mandel).
For further information, call the Music Program at 845-758-7250.
About the Thurman Barker Quartet:
"Thurman Barker proved he's become one of the most astonishing, inventive drummers in jazz," writes the Boston Herald. "He's that rare combination: a drummer of both raw muscle and fierce intelligence." Barker began his professional career at the age of 16, playing for blues singer Mighty Joe Young. Classically trained at the American Conservatory of Music, he saw his reputation as a drummer grow quickly. He is a charter member of the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians, a jazz cooperative formed in 1965 in Chicago to teach music to inner-city youths. He has performed worldwide and recorded with Cecil Taylor, Muhal Richard Abrams, Amina Claudine Myers, Anthony Braxton, Roscoe Mitchell, Sam Rivers, Billy Bang, Joseph Jarman, and Henry Threadgill. The World Music Institute commissioned two of his works; Dialogue was premiered at Merkin Concert Hall in New York City in 1994. His composition Expansions was premiered by the Woodstock Chamber Orchestra. He developed the Jazz Program at Bard College after joining the faculty in 1993. Barker has his own record label, Uptee, on which he recorded his album Voyage in 1986, and The Way I Hear It in 1998. His newest release on Uptee, Time Factor, is "a gem that reveals the depth of his talent . . . he makes music that's challenging and compelling," according to Steve Israel, music critic for the Times Herald Record.
James Emery, guitar virtuoso and composer of more than one hundred works for a wide variety of formats and instruments, has carved out a distinctive niche in contemporary music. New York Times music critic Robert Palmer has called Emery "mercurial, poised, and thoroughly satisfying . . . a fleet guitarist with a personal touch and sound." He studied theory and composition at Cleveland State University and moved to New York in the 1970s, recording with Leroy Jenkins and working with the Human Arts Ensemble and musicians Anthony Braxton, Kalapausha Maurice McIntyre, Thurman Barker, Steve Reich, Joe Lovano, Leo Smith, Henry Threadgill, Karl Berger, and others. He cofounded the chamber jazz ensemble the String Trio of New York, which is one of the most active and visible groups of its kind. Emery is a prolific composer, with a body of work including compositions for solo guitar, chamber groups, large ensembles, jazz ensembles, and symphony orchestras. He has six recordings of his own work, the most recent being Luminous; his CD Standing on a Whale Fishing for Minnows was selected in 1997 for the top 10 list by Jazziz magazine. Emery has received fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York Foundation for the Arts, and the Carey Trust.
Electric guitar and bassist Jerome Harris is best known for his work as a sideman with Sonny Rollins, and for his later work in groups led by drummer Bobby Previte and trombonist Ray Anderson, among others. Harris was already a skilled musician when he went to Harvard with the intent of becoming a psychiatrist. During his college years, he became known as a guitarist on campus who played in a variety of bands, from R&B to free jazz, including a fusion band with fellow student, drummer Akira Tana. After graduation, Harris decided to focus on music full-time and first began appearing on recordings during the late 1970s, such as Sonny Rollins's Don't Stop the Carnival. In addition to continuing his work with Rollins throughout the 1980s, Harris worked with Oliver Lake and Bill Frisell, among others. The second half of the decade found him playing with Bob Moses and Marty Ehrlich, while much of his work during the 1990s was with Previte and Anderson. Harris has toured internationally in various ensembles, including trips to Japan with Rollins, tours of the Middle East and India with Jay Hoggard, Africa with Oliver Lake, and the United States with Previte's group. Some of the other renowned musicians that he has worked with include Don Byron, Ned Rothenberg, Mark Helias, Pheeroan AkLaff, and Kenny Werner. In addition to his work as a sideman, Harris has led several recording dates of his own, including Algorithms, Hidden in Plain View, and Rendezvous.
Pianist Rob Schwimmer has worked with Wayne Shorter, Laurie Anderson, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Stevie Wonder, Kurt Vonnegut, John Stubblefield, Teo Macero, Hal Willner, Vernon Reid, and countless others. He has composed for experimental theater, television (including National Geographic and Sesame Street), and film. He has begun playing the theremin in recent years, and has been a soloist with the New Haven Symphony orchestra. BBC 3 has called him "the Jimi Hendrix of the theremin." Schwimmer also performs in an original avant-garde comedy music duo with guitarist Mark Stewart (from Bang on a Can All-Stars).
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