Scott Hamilton / Harry Allen Quintet featuring Rossano Sportiello, Thurs. Feb. 21, 2013
Scott Hamilton / Harry Allen Quintet featuring Rossano Sportiello
Thursday, February 21, 2013
“A first-rate jazz soloist who never disappoints.” – JazzTimes
Scott Hamilton takes his inspiration from the saxophone greats of the pre-Coltrane era: Ben Webster, Coleman Hawkins, and Lester Young, to name a few. His dedication to the swing era sound finds equal partners in fellow tenor saxophonist Harry Allen and ace pianist Rossano Sportiello. Hamilton was a lone maverick in the late ’70s, evoking the swing tradition at a time when the electric fusion of jazz and funk was in vogue. Swimming against the tide, a persistent Hamilton carved out a niche for himself, foreshadowing the arrival of the “Young Lions” retro-movement yet to come in the early ’80s. Scott’s concerts are a rarity to be savored. His current quintet, with Allen and Sportiello, is one of the best he’s ever had.
Born in 1954, in Providence, Rhode Island, Scott Hamilton grew up listening to his father’s jazz collection. Musically precocious, he started learning to play drums at five years of age, followed by piano, harmonica, and clarinet. Mostly self-taught, except for the clarinet, it wasn’t until his mid-teens that Scott turned to the saxophone as his main instrument. A fan of Johnny Hodges (Duke Ellington’s alto saxophonist), Hamilton eschewed modern jazz in favor of the swing era greats. Luckily, he found an early mentor in trumpet giant Roy Eldridge. A demanding teacher, Eldridge provided valuable advice to Scott at a critical time in his musical development, as well as a pathway to working with the top echelon of jazz royalty. Hamilton’s formidable talent as an improviser landed him gigs with Anita O’Day, Illinois Jacquet, Benny Goodman, Woody Herman, Gerry Mulligan, Flip Phillips, and Ruby Braff. By age 23, he was headlining his own groups. Concord Records signed him the same year, a move that resulted in a long and prolific recording career.
Now based back in the United States – after having lived in Europe for several years – Hamilton continues to champion swing-era stylings with his full, fluid, tenor saxophone sound, and the experience of a sure-footed veteran, totally in command of the music. And he also continues to tour internationally on a regular basis, headlining at numerous clubs and jazz festivals in Germany, Netherlands, Scandinavia, Japan, Spain, and Italy. For Scott, the heritage of the swing tradition remains a rich vein to be mined for it’s inventive expressiveness. Not only does he keep the torch lit for the melodicism of the great jazz standards, but he pushes the creative envelope in a way that maintains the swing era’s relevancy for today’s audiences. Together, with compatriots Harry Allen and Rossano Sportiello, Scott Hamilton makes the old sound like brand new.
Scott Hamilton / Harry Allen Quintet
DATE: Thursday, February 21, 2013
PLACE: Kuumbwa Jazz Center
ADDRESS: 320 Cedar St, Santa Cruz, CA 95060
TIME: 7:00 PM
PRICE: $22/Adv $25/Door
TICKETS: Logos Books & Records, 1117 Pacific Ave, Santa Cruz (831) 427-5100 and online at: http://www.kuumbwajazz.org
MORE INFO: http://www.kuumbwajazz.org or 831-427-2227
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