IF YOU GO
‘An Italian Jazz Concert’
Who: Randy Brecker, Ada Rovatti, Lew Del Gatto and other local jazz musicians
Where: Unitarian Church, 6017 Pine Ridge Road, Naples
When: Show begins at 6 p.m.
Jazz trumpeter and Grammy winner Randy Brecker, set to appear in concert at the United Church of Christ in Naples on Friday, Jan. 22, 2010, is perhaps the most recorded and trumpet player in history, having played in recording sessions and on tour with everyone from Sinatra to Springsteen.
One music writer said that it would be easier to come up with a list with whom Brecker hasn’t played than those of the recorded world or tour world. The list of greats he has played with include Blood Sweat & Tears, Stevie Wonder, Billy Cobham, Charles Mingus, Lou Reed, Frank Zappa, Todd Rundgren, Blue Oyster Cult, Dire Straits, Spyro Grya, Parliament-Funkadelics, Jaco Pastorious and hundreds of others.
Styles? How about jazz, funk, pop, fusion, rock and beyond? But these days, his heart and soul seem to be with we what he grew up listening as a Philadelphian as a third grader: be-bop.
“I still listen to the older guys and the musicians who have passed on, like Dizzy Gillespie,” he says ”I know I still every learn something every day from them.”
Though Brecker has played virtually everyone — and in virtually every style — has there been a dream fulfilled?
“My dream was to play with an orchestra backing me up,” Brecker says. “Last year I played and recorded with the Bialystock Philharmonic on a piece, written by my friend Polish pianist/composer Wlodek Pawlik. entitled ‘Nostalgic Journey,’ which chronicled my homecoming to the area in Poland where my ancestors lived. It received Top Ten awards, and it’s on the Summit record label ... My next project is a ballad record with the Danish Radio Orchestra which will be recorded this month.
“My other dream? To play with (legendary sax player) Sonny Rollins, and one of these days I’d love to play with Sonny Rollins with just a bass player and drummer.”
In terms of his upcoming show in Naples, billed as an “Italian Jazz Concert,” Brecker will feature some of his wife’s originals, by saxophonist Ada Rovatti — she’s coming, too — some standards and a special arrangement of the Italian national anthem.
The famed Brecker Brothers band is history. He lost his brother, saxophonist Michael, tragically in January of 2007, but Randy carries on.
“I travel all over the world quite often as a single these days — without my own band — and pick up players,” Brecker explains.
“The reality is that not quite as portrayed in the recent Jeff Bridges movie ‘Crazy Heart’ which depicts him as a down and out /has been singer/musician who picks up bands in bowling alleys to play with. I have fantastic musicians from cities in Siberia to Moscow to Tokyo to Budpest to Sophia to Sao Paulo to LA to NYC who play my music as if they grew up with it — and many of them did!”
Brecker is pleased to be playing locally with an old friend who now lives here: saxophonist Lew Del Gatto.
“He is simply a world class saxophone player and composer. We did countless recording dates in NYC for around 15 years, and he is a good friend. We always look forward to coming down to Naples and play and hang with him.”