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  • WDCH
  • Nov. 12, 2004

  • Ornette Coleman (pictured) Leads Quartet and Charlie Haden Performs Music from New CD Featuring Pianist Gonzalo Rubalcaba

    FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 12, 2004, AT 8 PM

    Ornette Coleman and Charlie Haden - seminal jazz legends who pioneered "free" jazz in the late 1950s in Los Angeles - share a rare double bill at the Walt Disney Concert Hall on Friday, November 12, at 8 p.m., as the Los Angeles Philharmonic kicks off its 2004/2005 Jazz series. Coleman, recipient of a MacArthur Genius Award, who cuts it up on saxophones, violin, and trumpet, makes his first Los Angeles appearance with his quartet in more than a decade. Two-time Grammy Award winning bassist Charlie Haden leads an octet, featuring pianist Gonzalo Rubalcaba, performing music from Haden's new CD Land of the Sun.

    An Upbeat Live pre-concert event takes place in BP Hall one hour prior to the performance; it is free to all ticketholders.

    Charlie Haden, who opens the program, has been hailed as "one of the most restless, gifted, and intrepid players in all of jazz." His latest project is inspired by the prestigious Mexican composer and bandleader Jose Sabre Marroquín, whose daughter came backstage to thank Haden for performing her father's song, "Nocturne." Haden found himself both moved and motivated by Marroquín's music and, together with his longtime friend Gonzalo Rubalcaba, created a gorgeous tapestry of sound reflecting the beauty and richness of Mexico: Land of the Sun/La Tierra del Sol (Verve). In addition to Haden and Rubalcaba, the band features jazz luminaries Ignacio Berroa, drums, percussion; Ernie Watts, tenor saxophone; Miguel Zenon, alto saxophone; Michael Rodriguez, trumpet/flugelhorn; Oriente Lopez, flute; and Larry Koonse, guitar.

    Alto saxophonist Ornette Coleman's revolutionary musical ideas have made a contribution to modern jazz recognized throughout the world. The creator of "harmolodic" music, Coleman - along with trumpeters Don Cherry and Bobby Bradford, drummers Ed Blackwell and Billy Higgins, and bassist Charlie Haden - broke away from rigid meters and conventional structural expectations. Their sonic experimentation led to the 1958 release of the album Something Else, introducing a new jazz freedom from the prevailing conventions of harmony, rhythm, and melody. It has been called "free jazz," and Coleman developed his concept of "harmolodics" through the 1960s, releasing more than 15 critically acclaimed albums on the Atlantic and Blue Note labels, most of which are now recognized as jazz classics. For his pioneering role in jazz, Coleman received a MacArthur Genius Award in 1994. His current quartet features drummer Denardo Coleman and bassists Greg Cohen and Tom Falanga.

    Upcoming performances in the Los Angeles Philharmonic's Jazz series include the world premiere of a jazz mass by Eduardo del Barrio featuring vocalist Dianne Reeves, trumpeter Terence Blanchard, oboist Paul McCandless, flutist Hubert Laws and the Los Angeles Philharmonic on Saturday, January 29, 2005, at 8 p.m. Saxophone great Sonny Rollins appears Wednesday, March 16, 2005, at 8 p.m. Joshua Redman leads the San Francisco Jazz Collective on Friday, April 8, 2005, at 8 p.m. Closing the series is James Moody's 80th Birthday Celebration on Sunday, April 30, 2005, at 7:30 p.m.

    ORNETTE COLEMAN was born in Fort Worth, Texas, in 1930. Coleman's father died when Ornette was seven. His seamstress mother bought Coleman his first saxophone when he was 14 years old. Self-taught, Coleman absorbed the instrument and began playing with local rhythm and blues bands. He took to the road at age 19 and landed in Los Angeles, where he found a core of musicians who took to his musical concepts: trumpeters Don Cherry and Bobby Bradford, drummers Ed Blackwell and Billy Higgins, and bassist Charlie Haden. He also began writing string quartets, woodwind quintets, and symphonies based on his Harmolodic theory. In the decades since, Coleman has released numerous trend-setting albums, including Tone Dialing, Sound Museum, Body Meta, Song X with guitarist Pat Metheny, and Virgin Beauty featuring the late Jerry Garcia. In 1997 New York's Lincoln Center Festival featured his symphonic work, Skies of America, with the New York Philharmonic and Kurt Masur. Coleman has received honorary degrees from the University of Pennsylvania, Cal Arts, and Boston Conservatory and an honorary doctorate from the New School for Social Research. In 1994 he received a MacArthur Fellowship, and in 1997 he was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Letters. In 2001 Coleman received the Praemium Imperiale award from the Japanese government.

    CHARLIE HADEN has been hailed as "one of the most restless, gifted, and intrepid players in all of jazz." In the late 1950s, as a vital member of the groundbreaking Ornette Coleman Quartet, Haden became known as one of free jazz's founding fathers. He played a vital role in this revolutionary new approach, elevating the bass from accompanist to direct participant. As Francis Davis writes in the The Atlantic Monthly, "No other instrument in jazz is more essential than the bass, both backbone and heartbeat, and Haden is its master." As bassist, composer, bandleader and producer, he has collaborated on hundreds of seminal recordings with such jazz innovators as Ornette Coleman, Chet Baker, John Coltrane, Keith Jarrett, Pat Metheny and Joe Henderson. In his quest to broaden the boundaries of his music he's consistently sought out performers from all musical genres from Brazilian guitarist Egberto Gismonti,and British classical composer Gavin Bryars, Beck and Ringo Starr. In 1982, he founded the Jazz Studies program at California Institute for the Arts, which emphasizes self discovery in life and music. His award-winning albums include the historic Liberation Music Orchestra recordings and, as well as garnering 15 Grammy nominations for many projects; he has received Grammy's for his 1997 recording Beyond the Missouri Sky with co-collaborator Pat Metheny (Verve) and for 2001's Nocturne (Verve), which won a Grammy for Best Latin Jazz Album that year.



    Walt Disney Concert Hall

    111 S. Grand Avenue, Los Angeles

    Ornette Coleman and Charlie Haden's "Land of the Sun" featuring Gonzalo Rubalcaba

    in order of appearance

    Charlie Haden's Land of the Sun

    featuring Gonzalo Rubalcaba
    Charlie Haden, leader/bass

    Gonzalo Rubalcaba, piano

    Ignacio Berroa, drums, percussion

    Ernie Watts, tenor saxophone

    Miguel Zenon, alto saxophone

    Michael Rodriguez, trumpet/flugelhorn

    Oriente Lopez, flute

    Larry Koonse, guitar

    Ornette Coleman

    Ornette Coleman, alto saxophone/violin/trumpet

    Denardo Coleman, drums

    Greg Cohen, bass

    Tom Falanga, bass

    An Upbeat Live pre-concert event takes place in BP Hall one hour prior to the performance; it is free to all ticketholders.

    Tickets ($25 - $80) are on sale now at the Walt Disney Concert Hall box office, online at, or via credit card phone order at 323.850.2000. A limited number of $10 rush tickets for seniors and full time students may be available at the Walt Disney Concert Hall box office two hours prior to the performance. Valid identification is required; one ticket per person; cash only. Groups of 12 or more may be eligible for special discounts for selected concerts and seating areas. For all information, please call 323.850.2000.

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  • Contact:

    Libby Huebner, 562.799.6055; Rachelle Roe, 213.972.7310; photos: 213.972.3034