Jazzmonthly.com welcomes Dave Brady from THE THREE FACES OF JAZZ featuring the EL MESON ALL STARS with their latest release The Three Faces of Jazz/Santa Fe. Based out of Santa Fe, this group really portrays the essence of cool, live, swinging Jazz. Drummer, vibraphonist, writer, arranger, pianist, composer, and teacher, David Brady is an accomplished musician with more than 30 years of professional performance and teaching experience. Dave welcome to JazzMonthly.com.
I see that you have dedicated your release “The Three Faces Of Jazz” to David Huertas, chief owner of El Meson. Tell us about this dedication.
DB: David Huertas, besides offering some of the tastiest food Santa Fe has to offer, has been incredibly supportive for live music and particularly Friday night jazz. We have been performing at El Meson for over 14 years. The club has a style of its own, very conducive for listening to music offering an elegant dining room with a separate cocktail area for the live music. Huertas consistently offers music throughout the week. Since relocating here in Santa Fe 4 years ago from the Central Coast of California, I was fortunate to connect with the family of players here. I dedicated my original tune "El Meson" to Huertas and the club. The tune has a Latin feel to it.
JazzMonthly: What was your process with regards to making this project?
DB: The truth is I am the new kid on the block with the family of musicians here. Bryan Lewis, drummer, leader, and founding member of the band, has moved from the drum chair to more of an agent, selecting and assembling members together for this project and well as announcing on gigs.
JazzMonthly: This CD really captures a genuine live-performance feeling. So it would appear that you perform live quite often. How do the people respond when you perform?
DB: We play every Friday night with some nights offering standing room only. The audience is always attentive to this swinging music art form.
JazzMonthly: You have a great mix of songs on the disk… how did you decide which selections to record?
DB: The session included 3 days of playing with different musicians and tunes. The trio - bassist Richard Snyder, pianist Rick Bowman, Leader Bryan Lewis, and myself decided on the tracks for the CD.
JazzMonthly: Talk to me about this really fine track, "My Foolish Heart.”
DB: This tune captured the essence and style this group has to offer. We used a relaxed bossa nova groove for the tune and everything just flowed, nothing was forced.
JazzMonthly: You also mentioned your gratitude to the players on this recording and they did such a fine job… tell us more about them and their reaction to this project before, during and after?
DB: Everyone was on board to make this CD. Having played together thought-out the years, we were given the opportunity to record our sound. The concept that makes the gig fresh at El Meson is how Bryan Lewis has rotated the musician, featuring someone different each week. I keeps you on your toes, never boring or humdrum. The other attribute that makes the Friday nights happen is that it swings. You will not get the call if you don’t swing. I could go on and on about each individual player on the CD but I will give you my brief description of the players.
Moving down the list Bryan Lewis epitomizes the dedication of a jazz drummer. Always swinging and making the music fun and exciting, Bryan has made a living, the “jazz dollars”, playing not only with the Three Faces of Jazz but booking and playing with a variety of players throughout the state. Rick Bowman always lays down a tasty, light swinging, melodic and harmonic style on the piano. Influenced by Bill Evans, and Red Garland, Rick has his own style of being simple yet supportive. Richard Snyder, having just retired from teaching music, finds himself in a busy schedule playing classical as well as jazz bass. Richard provides the humorous moment during the evening of music. His lyrical bass solos always beckon applause. The real veteran master of his craft, Arlen Asher is extremely sensitive to each musical environment he enters. His talent on all the reeds demands respect. He has very humble demeanor, always supportive and searching for the best approach for the music. I never hear him play the same thing twice. No clichés. Always fresh. We dub Dave Anderson the “Stan Getz” of Santa Fe. His playing on alto and tenor always swings, and when he plays Latin, Antonio Carlos Jobim tunes, he captures that style with his own flare and finesse. Dave is always in demand. Mark “Chief” Sanchez offers entertainment on all levels especially when he is the featured artist. Playing either flugelhorn or trumpet, on occasion he will set them down just scat a few choruses. His roots being on the front line in shows in Las Vegas Nevada, “Chief” is always relaxed in his element as the featured artist playing all the great jazz standards.
Lastly Tony Cesarano offers that chordal, harmonic, swinging jazz interpretation, his own sound, and his own style. When you hear him playing a solo, you know, that’s Cersarano. Tony is comfortable in all situations, whether solo, duo, or whatever combination. Yet when he is the featured artist, his swinging style and choice of tunes clearly exposes his roots.