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Jack Novotny recorded ‘THE MANY AND THE FEW” on January 9-13, 2017. All four compositions were composed by Jack and the recording was a tribute to John Coltrane’s “Love Supreme”.
The musicians included drummer Dr. Mark Lomax II, bassist Juini Booth, pianist Benito Gonzalez, and myself on tenor and soprano saxophone.
I followed up “The Many and The Few” in late November of 2017 with a recording of five of my original compositions and called it “Counter Culture”. It incorporated a front line horn section including Edwin Bayard on tenor saxophone, Marlon Jordan on trumpet, and myself on tenor and soprano saxophone. Juini Booth was the bassist and Dr. Mark Lomax II played drums. I purposely did not use a chordal instrument such as a pianist or guitarist. At that point in my musical path forward I was being heavily influenced by the music of Ornette Coleman, Charlie Haden, Don Cherry, Ed Blackwell, Eric Dolphy, Booker Little, Dewey Redman, Charles Mingus, Jaki Bayard, Billy Higgins, Sam Rivers and the contemporary Joe Lovano.
In December of 2017 I recorded with drummer Ronzo Smith and acoustic bassist Jordan McBride in Cleveland, OH. We performed eight compositions of mine in a free, progressive genre. We called this session “Trio Theophany”. The experience of the Trio was exhilarating in its freedom of expression.
The Sextet was booked and performed throughout 2018 at venues such as Small’s Jazz in NYC, Twins in D.C., An Die Musik in Baltimore, NightTown in Cleveland, Good Times in Savannah, GA, Dana Rose Gallery/Hoffman Place in Columbus, OH.
On August 10, 2018 I did another recording with vibe-ist/drummer Ronzo Smith, bassist Jordan McBride, and drummer/percussionist Pedro Dell at The Emporium in Cleveland, OH. We recorded five of my original compositions and one of Ronzo Smith’s. This is simply called “The Emporium”.
In the coming 2019 year we will continue to perform as a Sextet, Quintet, Quartet, and Trio. Serious work is underway with the creation of a five movement suite dedicated to the exemplary life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Our vision is to record and perform this musical piece in the historic Ebeneezer Baptist Church where Dr. King preached.