In the spring of 1958, the Dave Brubeck Quartet embarked on an ambitious tour of Europe and Asia sponsored by the U.S. State Department. The tour was part of a “cultural ambassador” program in which the U.S. government sent prominent American musicians abroad to promote American arts and culture during the Cold War.
Sixty years later, Chris and Dan Brubeck, who performed with their father later in his career, celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Jazz Diplomacy Tour, making a stop at Gualala Arts Center on Saturday, May 5.
The Gualala Arts concert starts at 7:00pm, but guests can enjoy tapas and a corona or sangria before the show at 6:00pm and be guaranteed early seating. Concert only tickets are $28 in advance, plus $5 day of concert; youth tickets for ages 7 to 17 are $20 in advance, plus $5 day of. Food tickets are sold separately, $25 in advance, if purchased by April 27. After that, they are $10 more.
Joined by guitarist Mike DeMicco and pianist Chuck Lamb, the Brubeck Brothers Quartet celebrate Dave Brubeck’s career and legacy with a concert that highlights their new CD “Timeline”, a set of recordings that include freshly re-arranged tunes written by Dave at the time of the tour as well as new originals by the Brubeck Brothers Quartet.
Brush up on your history before the concert to better understand its significance by tuning into PBS on Friday, May 4, at 7:00pm, for a premiere of Hugo Berkeley’s new television documentary, “Jazz Ambassadors“, about the State Department’s program by that name.
The Brubeck Brothers Quartet is an exciting jazz group with local ties featuring two members of one of America’s most accomplished musical families, Dan Brubeck on drums, and Chris Brubeck playing bass and trombone. Guitarist Mike DeMicco and pianist Chuck Lamb complete this dynamic quartet.
They have performed at concert series, colleges and jazz festivals across North America and Europe including the Newport, Detroit, Ravinia, Las Vegas, Sedona, Spokane & Monterey Jazz Festivals. Their hour-long concert at Sierra Nevada Brewery BBQ has been broadcast on the nationally syndicated program: “Sierra Center Stage.” The BBQ was chosen to kick off the New Year a few years ago with an hour-long, coast-to-coast live broadcast on “Toast of the Nation” on National Public Radio. Their Koch release, “Classified,” earned rave reviews from All About Jazz: “Once again the BBQ attains that rarefied level where music is both relaxed and expressive, and their joy in its creation is contagious. There’s really nothing out there that comes close to their unique brand of inventiveness.”
These versatile musicians also collaborate with orchestras, and in 2006 ignited the Salt Lake City Jazz Festival by playing with the Utah Symphony, conducted by Keith Lockhart. With Chris Brubeck’s compositions as a vehicle, the BBQ has joined with chamber groups to collaborate with musicians from the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, the Philadelphia Orchestra and the Russian National Symphony Orchestra.
Although the quartet’s style is rooted in “straight-ahead” jazz, their concerts reveal an inherent ability to explore and play odd time signatures while naturally integrating the influences of funk, blues and world music. The group’s creativity, technique and improvisation can be heard in their uncompromising music, which reflects their dedication to melody, rhythm, culture and the spontaneous spirit of jazz.