Orbert Davis Quartet | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

Orbert Davis Quartet 

Sign up for our newsletters Subscribe

Always awash in great tenor men, bassists, and pianists, Chicago has never really been much of a jazz trumpet town (at least not since Louis Armstrong departed in the 20s); so calling Orbert Davis the city's hottest hornman might seem a minor compliment. Don't let the lack of competition fool you, though: Davis would attract attention in Gabriel's shadow. He fits into a trumpet lineage that celebrates musical intellect--a lineage that includes the frequently overlooked Randy Brecker and the late Woody Shaw and extends back to Clifford Brown in the 50s. Davis brings a listener to seat's edge through the sheer intelligence of his improvisations. It doesn't hurt that Davis (like his is predecessors) possesses a spine-tingling command of the instrument, which underlies, informs, and validates his highly concentrated solo inventions; indeed, there is no doubt of his ability to grab the ear with such traditional trumpeters' tricks as high-note blasts, soaring glissando swoops, or rapid-fire articulation. But such devices don't really suit his purpose. Neither does the often empty swagger of a Freddie Hubbard, for which Davis substitutes the crisp logic of the impeccably sculpted line; when he solos, you can't take your ears off him. Davis spends much of his time in the commercial studios, but this new quartet leads one to hope for a jazz album in the not-too-distant future--and not only for the fun of finding a title (In Orbert, The Geosynchronous Orbert, and Orberting come immediately to mind). Saturday, 8 PM, Green Mill, 4802 N. Broadway; 878-5552.

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

More by Neil Tesser

Agenda Teaser

Performing Arts
Peter Pan Mercury Theater Chicago
November 17
Performing Arts
Riff iO Theater, The Mission Theater
June 08

Tabbed Event Search

Popular Stories