Magic Triangle Jazz Series: Mark Dresser Seven
September 10, 2017
Fine Arts Center Bezanson Recital Hall
UMass Amherst Campus
Mark Dresser makes music in a vast variety of settings and contexts, but the dauntingly prolific bassist always seeks to create space for the unpredictable play between form and freedom. On his most recent album, Sedimental You, released in November 2016, he’s assembled an astonishingly creative cast that embraces the intuitive and emotionally charged nature of his improvisational imperative. Riveting, playful and often revelatory, his compositions emerge out of an ever-shifting matrix of specific musical personalities and the often dismaying swirl of current events.
“Somehow, Dresser manages to create his most accessible work without compromising any of its inherent ferocity,” writes Robert Bush. “Stellar performances abound, from the hair-raising work of 21-year-old violinist David Boroff and piano monster Joshua White, to the jewel-like contributions of Nicole Mitchell, Michael Dessen, Marty Ehrlich and Jim Black. Beautiful, powerful, and joyful to the core.”
Called “one of the few virtuosos of so-called avant-garde jazz,” by the Village Voice, Mark Dresser has been composing and performing solo contrabass and ensemble music professionally since 1972 throughout North America, Europe and the Far East. Emerging from the L.A. "free" jazz scene of the early 70's, Dresser performed with the "Black Music Infinity", led by Stanley Crouch, and included Bobby Bradford, Arthur Blythe, David Murray and James Newton. Concurrently he was performing with the San Diego Symphony.
After completing B.A. and M.A. degrees at the University of California San Diego where he studied with contrabass virtuoso Bertram Turetzky and a Fulbright Fellowship in Italy with maestro Franco Petracchi, Dresser relocated to New York in 1986 after being invited to join the quartet of composer/saxophonist, Anthony Braxton. Dresser played with Braxton's longest performing quartet for nine years. Once in New York, Dresser also began working with a wide variety of musicians including Ray Anderson, Tim Berne, Jane Ira Bloom, Anthony Davis, Fred Frith, Dave Douglas, John Zorn, and others. A former professor at Hampshire College, Dresser is currently a professor at University of California, San Diego.
A founding member of the Arcado String Trio, Dresser has written and performed original music for the stage (the New York Shakespeare Festival production of Henry VI), and silent films (“Un Chien Andalou” and “The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari”).
"Mark Dresser is an inventor,” says Harvey Pekar. “He also may be the most important bassist to emerge since 1980 in jazz or classical music."
Bezanson Recital Hall is located within the Fine Arts Center. https://fac.umass.edu/Online/default.asp?doWork::WScontent::loadArticle=...