Joe Lovano, Dave Liebman & Ravi Coltrane
Tenor and soprano saxophonist, bandleader and composer Ravi Coltrane has fronted a variety of jazz lineups, recorded critically acclaimed albums as a leader, produced recordings by other artists and worked as a a sideman for numerous jazz luminaries. Born to John and Alice Coltrane in Long Island, NY, in 1965, Ravi may have been destined for a life in music from the outset.
Coltrane began playing clarinet in middle school while growing up in a house filled with every imaginable genre of recorded music – jazz, classical, R&B, soul, pop, and of course, the highly influential LPs pressed by his revered father. In 1986, he entered the California Institute of the Arts to pursue musical studies, focusing on the saxophone.
By the early ‘90s, he was back in New York, playing with a variety of notable jazz figures: Jack DeJohnnette, Wallace Roney, Geri Allen, Kenny Barron, Joe Lovano, Joanne Brackeen, Steve Coleman and many others.
After performing on more than thirty recordings as a sideman, he cut Moving Pictures, his first album as a leader, in 1997. The album served as the impetus for Coltrane to assemble a touring group that canvassed North America and Europe. His second album, the critically praised From the Round Box (2002), revealed a growing sense of self-challenge, balancing esoteric covers with compelling originals.
Coltrane launched his own label, RKM Music, in 2002. His early projects included albums by trumpeter Ralph Alessi and saxophonist Michael McGinnis. However, despite the demands of running a successful record label, he has remained committed to developing his discography as a leader with Mad 6 (2003) and In Flux (2005).
He joined the Saxophone Summit lineup following the death of Michael Brecker in January 2007. His first recording with the saxophone trio is Seraphic Light, released on Telarc in 2008.
Dave Liebman is a uniquely idiosyncratic and explorative musician with a commitment to creative excellence that has been the catalyst for a life of perpetual performance and teaching.
Born in Brooklyn, NY, in 1946, Liebman developed an interest in jazz after seeing John Coltrane perform live. Following studies with Lennie Tristano and Charles Lloyd, he organized a musical cooperative, Free Life Communication of New York, part of the lively "loft" jazz scene of the era. After a brief stint with jazz fusion pioneers Ten Wheel Drive, Liebman served his apprenticeships in the early 1970s with two masters, Elvin Jones and Miles Davis.
Like other Miles’ sidemen, he left Miles to lead his own groups, including the Open Sky Trio, with Bob Moses, and Lookout Farm with Richie Beirach. Following a world tour with Chick Corea, he reunited with Beirach in the early 1980s and formed Qwest.
He formed the Dave Liebman Group in the 1990s, and has since recorded extensively. His latest release, “In A Mellow Tone,” includes his long-time musical teammate, guitarist Vic Juris.
As an educator and activist, Liebman has written and published articles, books, instructional videos, play-along-CDs, and chamber music. He is also the founder and artistic director of the International Association of Schools of Jazz, an organization dedicated to sharing the joy of jazz worldwide.
Since his musical arrival in the late ‘60s, Dave Liebman’s artistic output has ranged from straight ahead to chamber jazz; from fusion to avant garde. This diversity has always been marked by its conviction, singular approach and a sense of adventure core elements of his creative aesthetic.
At the heart of Joe Lovano’s musical quest is a heroic pursuit to persistently challenge and propel his conceptual and thematic choices. No two Lovano recordings are alike.
Lovano was born in Cleveland in 1952. His father, Cleveland saxophonist, Tony “Big T” Lovano, taught his son the alto and introduced him to Dizzy Gillespie, James Moody and Sonny Stitt. By the time he was a teenager, he was playing tenor in local jam sessions. Deeply rooted in bebop, Joe explored modal harmony and musical freedom while at Berklee.
Joe's first professional gigs were with organist Lonnie Smith and Brother Jack McDuff. After three years on the road with Woody Herman’s Thundering Herd in the late ‘70s, he joined the Mel Lewis Orchestra and began hosting regular jam sessions at his Manhattan loft. As word of Joe’s prowess as a soloist spread, he became a member of guitarist John Scofield’s Quartet. He gained further exposure and renown, particularly in Europe, through his work in Paul Motian’s Trio, which featured former Berklee classmate, guitarist Bill Frisell.
Since his recording debut as leader in 1985, Joe Lovano has released more than 25 CDs, featuring such musicians as Michel Petrucciani, Dave Holland, and Elvin Jones. Experimenting with different ensembles, Joe’s discography includes trios, quartets, nonets and his tenor saxophone with voice, string and woodwind ensembles.
Regarding his unique musical journey, Joe Lovano believes that his career as a soloist “has been one of developing conceptions in my playing to fit into varied contexts so I'm free to react within different kinds of moods and energies of different musicians.”