University of Iowa News Release
June 15, 2006
Prominent Jazz Artists Play At The University of Iowa June 27 and 29
The University of Iowa School of Music will present free concerts by two nationally known jazz groups, as part of the All-State Music Camp jazz week, at 8 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday, June 27 and 29, in Clapp Recital Hall.
The performers are:
--UBUNTU! the Jay Foote Quintet, at 8 p.m. Tuesday, June 27.
--The Robin Eubanks Septet at 8 p.m. Thursday, June 29.
Featuring the music of two brothers from Iowa, Jay and Alex Foote, UBUNTU! is a New York City-based band playing music as hard to define as the African word from which they derive their name. Roughly translated, "ubuntu" is the belief in a universal bond of sharing that connects all humanity. Applying the idea into music, UBUNTU! plays original compositions that highlight group interaction, communication and sharing.
Jay and Alex Foote -- playing bass and guitar respectively -- were raised in Iowa, where they were exposed to a diverse array of music. Many years later, after countless country, folk and jazz gigs, they found themselves in New York -- a long way from home. They decided to form their own group, joining with fellow Iowans Evan Mazunik on piano -- a UI alumnus who has been active in the Iowa City area for a number of years -- and Rick Stone on saxophones. Rounding out the quintet is Georgia-born drummer Jason Nazary.
UBUNTU! draws on a wide variety of influences -- from arena-style British Invasion rock, to dance-floor-worthy drum and bass, all the way to concert hall classical -- to meld a sound that is both familiar and intriguingly new. You can learn more about the group at their Web page, www.jayfoote.com.
Robin Eubanks is one of the most prominent jazz artists of his generation. His extensive performing experience includes his own groups, EB3 and Mental Images, as well as with the critically acclaimed Dave Holland Quintet and Big Band, with whom he was an original member. He has recorded seven albums as a leader featuring his original music.
He belongs to a musical family. His brother, Kevin Eubanks, is the music director for the Tonight Show and another brother, Duane, plays trumpet in New York. Their mother has been a music educator for more than 30 years, and their uncle Ray Bryant is a prominent jazz pianist.
A graduate of the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, Robin Eubanks combines his performance career with an appointment as tenured professor of jazz trombone at the Oberlin College Conservatory. He has collaborated with a stunning variety of jazz and pop artists, including Art Blakey, Elvin Jones, Eddie Palmieri, Sun Ra, Barbra Streisand, the Rolling Stones and Talking Heads, to name a few. He's won Grammys for his performances on Michael Brecker's "Wide Angles" and Dave Holland's "What Goes Around."
In 2002, he won a compositional grant from Chamber Music America, followed by an ASCAP Composer's grant in 2003. Other musical groups now commission him as a composer, and as with his performing career, his compositional interests are staggeringly diverse. "My compositions can change fluidly from swing to funk to Latin to 11/8 or 7/4, without sounding forced or awkward," Eubanks said.
More information can be found at www.robineubanks.com
The All-State Music Camp is sponsored by the UI School of Music and directed by Kevin Kastens, who also directs the UI Hawkeye Marching Band. It offers a variety of musical experiences for talented young musicians who have completed grades 8-12. More information is available on the camp Web page, www.uiowa.edu/~bands/asmc/.
The School of Music is part of the Division of Performing Arts in the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.
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