Nels Cline-Jeff Parker Quartet plays Made in Chicago series
The Nels Cline-Jeff Parker Quartet will interpret the classic 1964 Paul Bley-John Gilmore album The Turning Point in a free Millennium Park Thursday. The guitarists are joined by bassist Nate McBride and drummer Frank Rosaly for the latest concert in the Made in Chicago: World Class Jazz series. Check out some of the advance press for Thursday’s concert, which begins at 6:30 PM:
The Nels Cline-Jeff Parker Quartet interpret the classic Paul Bley-John Gilmore album The Turning Point in Millennium Park Thursday. (photo: Erik Abderhalden)
Guitarists Jeff Parker and Nels Cline are among the most creative musicians alive, and both are decidedly genre averse. They’re jazz musicians at heart, yet they’re best known for playing in rock bands—Parker in Tortoise, Cline in Wilco. They’ve only made one record together, as sidemen to drummer Scott Amendola on his excellent 2005 album Believe, but for nearly a decade they’ve sporadically led this quartet with drummer Frank Rosaly and bassist Nate McBride, and for all those years it’s existed to do just one thing: interpret The Turning Point, a brilliant 1964 album by pianist Paul Bley, Sun Ra saxophonist John Gilmore, bassist Gary Peacock, and drummer Paul Motian. (It was issued in 1975 by Bley’s Improvising Artists label.) The recording is an elegantly lyrical dose of free jazz, applied to gorgeous compositions by Paul Bley, Carla Bley, and Annette Peacock; Parker and Cline put their own stamp on the music, unspooling sour-sweet, gentle-noisy counterpoint on each of the pretty themes while the deft rhythm section roils underneath. —Peter Margasak
Musical genres should collide on this night, considering the resumes of Parker and Cline. Parker travels freely among avant-garde, jazz and alternative rock idioms, as in the band Tortoise. His recent move from Chicago to Los Angeles represented a significant loss for this city’s new-music scene, but it also makes this return performance greatly anticipated. He’ll collaborate with Wilco guitarist Nels Cline, which should “bring in people who follow him,” says Jazz Institute executive director Lauren Deutsch, thereby expanding the audience of Made in Chicago. They’ll be joined by drummer Frank Rosaly and bassist Nate McBride. Opening act: Gallery 37 After School Matters Jazz Ensemble. –Howard Reich
Yes, that’s a lot of colons in one event name. This is another gem in this season of the city’s jazz weekly in Millennium Park. Some might only know Jeff Parker and Nels Cline as the guitarists in Tortoise and Wilco, but the boundary-pushing shredders run far deeper than post-rock and art-folk. Rooted by drummer Frank Rosaly and bassist Nate McBride, the two bob and weave fluidly through gypsy, noise, bop, rock and classical styles. It’s dazzling electric guitar work, running the gamut from Django to Sonic Youth. The quartet performed at the Pitchfork Festival in 2006.