The Keith Hall Trio featuring Andrew Rathbun and Robert Hurst
Time & Location
About the Event
Keith Hall - drums
Andrew Rathbun - saxophone
Robert Hurst - bass
The Keith Hall Trio is a modern jazz group which experiments with a balance of propulsive grooves, new compositions and improvisation. The trio includes saxophonist and composer Andrew Rathbun, bass legend Robert Hurst and drummer Keith Hall.
Toronto native Andrew Rathbun is widely esteemed as one of the most creative and accomplished saxophonists, composers and bandleaders of his generation. Andrew Rathbun is known for his work on his numerous albums on Steeplechase Records, as well as his highly-acclaimed and recent JUNO Award nominated album Atwood Suites on Origin Records. The New York Times calls Rathbun “An industrious saxophonist and imaginative composer-arranger.” Rooted in the fiery improvisatory legacy of post-bop jazz, Rathbun’s music is also deeply informed by classical composition. His works include song cycles, suites, and chamber and orchestral pieces for a wide range of ensembles. His 2005 duo release with pianist George Colligan, Renderings, features adaptations of Maurice Ravel and Federico Mompou, as well as an original seven-movement “Suite for Soprano Saxophone and Piano” inspired by the great Wayne Shorter. His 2010 release The Idea of North, inspired by the radio documentaries of Glenn Gould, includes a sextet arrangement of Christoph Glück’s “Minuet and Dance of the Blessed Spirits.” Rathbun has also written big band commissions for the Danish Radio Jazz Orchestra, the Brussels Jazz Orchestra, the Metropole Orkest and other ensembles, and performed and composed commercial music for roughly 10 years as well.
Another of Rathbun’s inspirations is poetry: his 1998 recording Jade set to music the verse of Cathy Song, while his 2000 follow-up True Stories focused on the work of fellow Canadian Margaret Atwood. On both these recordings, acclaimed Brazilian vocalist Luciana Souza captured the imagery and deep emotion of the poems while meeting every technical challenge posed by Rathbun’s involved orchestrations. Trumpeter Taylor Haskins played a major role on these early releases, not to mention Rathbun’s debut, Scatter Some Stones; he would later appear on Affairs of State, The Idea of North and two tracks from Numbers & Letters, Rathbun’s exploratory 2014 quartet session.
Robert Hurst, a 7-time Grammy Winner and 4-time Emmy Winner, is one of the most well-respected bassists in the last 30 years and has been pivotal in helping to shape the sound of modern jazz throughout his work with the bands of Wynton Marsalis, Branford Marsalis, and many others. He spent eight seasons on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno and has appeared on over 30 major movie soundtracks. As a result of Hurst’s virtuosity, improvisational prowess and unique multi-lingual styling, he has been recognized as a huge, authoritative presence in the music industry. Adored by students, critics, master musicians and fellow educators alike, Robert Hurst has expanded his reach of influence and presently serves as a dedicated Associate Professor of Music, with Tenure, and the Director of Small Jazz Ensembles in the Department of Jazz and Contemporary Improvisation at the University of Michigan’s School of Music, Theatre & Dance in Ann Arbor. In addition to his activities as a full-time professor of music, globetrotting bandleader and sideman and fulfilling ongoing requests as a special guest performer & visiting arts fellow to over 40 Institutions and counting, Hurst maintains membership on the ISIM Advisory Council, has written skill and exercise materials published for the Woodshed Master Class Series in DownBeat Magazine, and has thoughtfully served, since 2002, on the Board of Directors for The John and Alice Coltrane Foundation. Robert returns triumphant to the CD scene with his newest release and third consecutive Critic’s Top Pick (2011-2014): “BoB: a Palindrome” 2013. “Bob Ya Head”, (Nationally Ranked #9 on CMJ charts, 2011) and “Unrehurst” Vol. 2, (Nationally Ranked Top Ten Jazz CD for 2011)
Keith Hall has established himself as a passionate educator and joyful performer over the last 25 years. He spent 12 years recording and touring the world with singer Curtis Stigers and co-leads another trio called TRI-FI which has released five albums. He is the Artistic Director of the Keith Hall Summer Drum Intensive, and the Executive Director of TUNED IN, a 501c3 which focuses on supporting the power of music education to change lives. Hall is the author of two instructional jazz drum set books: Jazz Drums Now! Vol. 1 and Vol. 2 and is the radio host for Jazz Currents on WMUK, the NPR affiliate in Kalamazoo, Mich.