Tarbaby ft. David Murray
Pianist Orrin Evans, bassist Eric Revis, and drummer Nasheet Waits, the three musicians that have composed Tarbaby for some 15 years are among the most respected, versatile, and important figures of 21st-century post-bop. All of them have put significant time in some of the best-known working groups in jazz history—Evans in the Bad Plus, Revis in the Branford Marsalis Quartet, and Waits in Jason Moran’s The Bandwagon—but those affiliations are a mere drop in the bucket for these guys, who’ve used Tarbaby as a kind of no-holds-barred research lab. Operating as a collective in which they all bring in tunes, Tarbaby allows the musicians to stretch and experiment, while also paying tribute to their jazz roots.
Together the trio unleashes a microcosm of jazz history, making connections between stride and free jazz that many of us might miss. The group has long performed sporadically due to geography and heavy work schedules. But Tarbaby gigs—and the handful of recordings they’ve made, such as the recent Dance of the Evil Toys with the sublime alto saxophonist Oliver Lake (of World Saxophone Quartet fame) as special guest—prove that the trio members possess such an innate connection that they can pick up whenever and wherever. In fact, considering the trio’s modus operandi as a fulcrum of experimentation and community, it’s hardly surprising that they’ve often collaborated with guests such as Lake, trumpeter Ambrose Akinmusire, and guitarist Marc Ducret, among others.
In this special Big Ears gig they’ll join forces with the titanic tenor saxophonist David Murray, a partner with Lake in WSQ and one of the most dominant voices in post-bop of the 1980s and 1990s. Recently he’s been turning heads again, whether jousting with Norwegian firebreathers Paal Nilssen-Love and Ingebrigt Håker Flaten or finding a groove with bassist Brad Jones and drummer Hamid Drake in his Brave New World Trio.