December 2007

Church of the Advocate18th and Diamond Streets
Philadelphia, PA Map
Price: $15 General Admission
Sunday, September 23, 2007 - 8:00pm

Bobby Zankel and the Warriors of the Wonderful Sound with Odean Pope, Ruth Naomi Floyd and Muagawane Mahoele

Bobby Zankel, alto saxophone
Dan Peterson, reeds
Elliott Levin, tenor saxophone + flute
Bryan Rogers, tenor saxophone
Dan Scofield, baritone saxophone
Bart Miltenberger, trumpet
Adam Hershberger, trumpet
Patrick Hughes, trumpet
Kimbal Brown, trumpet
Rick Iannacone, el. guitar
Dylan Taylor, double-bass
Tom Lawton , piano
Dan Blacksberg, trombone
Larry Toft , trombone
Craig McIver, drums
Odean Pope, tenor saxophone
Ruth Naomi Floyd, vocals
Maugawane Mahoele, percussion

Please join us for the premeire of Bobby Zankel's four-part suite commemorating the 40th memorial of John Coltrane's death (7/17/67). This unique performance which celebrates Coltrane's remarkable legacy will be held on his birthday and at the Church of the Advocate, the last Philadelphia venue performed in before his death.

Brooklyn-born alto saxophonist Bobby Zankel has been developing his brilliant and original compositions in Philadelphia since 1975. His world-class "little big band" - the Warriors of the Wonderful Sound - has been the ideal outlet for his spirituality, creativity and intensity. Discover why JazzTimes declared "He's headed to status as a prime jazz innovator!"

Zankel first began attracting attention in the early 1970s for his work with Cecil Taylor's Unit Core Ensemble as a "skillful young altoist with a powerful music at his fingertips." His underground reputation grew on the New York Loft Scene, where he performed with the likes of Ray Anderson, William Parker, and Sunny Murray and where he continued his apprenticeship with Taylor.

Zankel became a Philadelphian in 1975 to raise his family and to expand his artistic vision without heed to commercialism or the trends of the times. Since 1975 his performances as a sideman have ranged from the Hank Mobley/Sonny Gillete Quintet, to Jymmie Merritt's Forerunners, to the Dells, NRBQ, Odean Pope's Saxophone Choir, Ruth Naomi Floyd, and European work with Taylor. Zankel's intensive studies of tonality and rhythms with Maestro Dennis Sandole have lead to his development into one of the most brilliant and original composers of the 1990s. His alto playing has been described as a unique amalgam of the precision and rhythmic intricacy of be-bop, with the soul and drive of hard bop, and the fire, spirituality, creativity and intensity of the avant garde.

Zankel's tenure in Philadelphia has been marked by a series of acclaimed collaborations with choreographers, writers, and visual artists (funded by a variety of grants, and commissions), four that have resulted in three ballets and one opera. In 1995 he was honored to receive the prestigious Pew Fellowship (the largest monetary grant that one can apply for in the US) for his writing. Zankel's compositions, which are characterized by a stunning blend of rhythmic layers, a highly personal, complex, chromatic harmonic language, and a hauntingly beautiful melodic lyricism, have been performed by such diverse musicians as Johnny Coles, Odean Pope, Jamaaladeen Tacuma, Lester Bowie, Marilyn Crispell, Ralph Peterson Jr., among others. The introspection of the composer's life is balanced by more than a decade of "artist in residence" programs in the Pennsylvania prisons.