07/30/02

Joshua Redman Gets Elastic

It's hard to believe that it was 11 years ago that Joshua Redman burst onto the scene, winning the Thelonious Monk Saxophone Competition and landing a major record label deal with Warner Bros. Since then, Redman, 33, has been one of the busiest jazz artists around, touring the world, recording albums under his own name, making the occasional sideman appearance and even returning to the Monk competition as a judge. Redman recently put the final touches on Elastic, his ninth album as a leader.

Elastic features keyboardist Sam Yahel and drummer Brian Blade, with whom Redman appeared on the June release Yaya3, a self-titled release for the trio's collectively led band. On this new disc, the trio explores funk rhythms and jammy concepts. The performances were recorded in the studio and a variety of effects and overdubbed accents were used to add more layers to the music. The album's 11 tracks feature Yahel and Blade playing soul grooves with jazz-influenced improvisation on top.

Redman says of the album: "The goal was to break down the boundaries between an open jazz aesthetic and a tight funk aesthetic. Rather than creating a groove at the expense of spontaneity and interaction, I wanted to make music that has that clarity and assertiveness in the rhythm but is still open, fluid, flexible, elastic."

Elastic is set for release on Sept. 10 on Warner Bros.

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