It wasn’t until singer Tamar Korn inherited her grandmother’s Ella Fitzgerald record at sixteen that she listened to very much jazz. “I was excited at the idea of being able to change the melody and rhythm of the written music,” says Korn. “I was so trained in strict forms where you play just what is written that improvisation came as an epiphany through her.” Raised by musically inclined parents – her father is a violinist – Tamar was classically trained on piano, and as fascinated as she was by the sound of jazz, she still felt a bit intimidated of scatting and diving head first into the chaotic feel of the sound. “I started to not be scared of dissonance; if I repeated a shape melodically and rhythmically and built upon it, I started to see a trajectory, a musical idea, and that’s what a solo was.". Tamar continued her exploration through her college years, during which she studied experimental theater and started to learn the bounds of her voice. “That was a time of great expansion in my vocal imagination.” Tamar performed professionally with the now defunct Cangelosi Cards for over six years. She appears regularly with Dennis Lichtmans's, Braincloud, a more Western Swing-based group and most recently with Gaucho, a gypsy jazz ensemble with whom she has written her first original material.
A native of suburban Boston, Dennis Lichtman began his musical career with violin lessons at the age of 5. Over the next decade, Dennis took up serious study of a number of instruments, making smooth transitions from Suzuki violin kid to clarinet stud to guitar wanker, and eventually to mando-blaster. In 2001, Dennis graduated Magna Cum Laude from the Hartt School of Music, where he studied clarinet under New York legend Charles Russo and filled the principal clarinet chair in the Hartt Symphony. Now a New York resident, Dennis performs regularly with a variety of groups, ranging from bluegrass to classical, Klezmer, and Celtic.
Today original music tends to fall into two camps popular and academic. There are those that write purely for the purposes of making money and those that write purely for the sake of complexity. Jesse Gelber’s music is the rare exception that combines the sophistication of academic knowledge with the accessibility of American Popular Song. Jesse holds a Master’s in jazz theory from Rutgers University and a Bachelor’s in jazz performance and composition from the New England Conservatory of Music. Jesse has lectured on topics like Bitonality for the Music Theory Society of New York State, he teaches seminars on the history of jazz and blues piano at the National Guitar Workshop, and he teaches courses on music theory at Rutgers University. Despite Jesse’s academic background his music tends to be melodic and memorable. His work has been sung and played by Theodore Bikel, Hal Linden, and The Massachusetts Springfield Symphony. He won a 1997 ASCAP Foundation -- Morton Gould Young Composer Award for his Opera, Broad Stripes and Bright Stars, which was showcased January of 2002 at La MaMa theater. He was the musical director for both the 50th Anniversary of Israel Concert in Boston’s Symphony Hall, and A Delhi-Mix performed at Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College. Jesse has written arrangements for several broadcast performances including A Taste of Passover and The Chanukah Special, both of which were shown on PBS Television.
Jesse’s song “Boston in the Rain” is the featured track on Julian Yeo’s new critically acclaimed CD Old New Borrowed Blue. “Boston in the Rain” has been sung and recorded by many artists including Jesse, whose own vocal style has been compared to Jelly Roll Morton and Dave Van Ronk. In addition to his own songs, Jesse likes to sing obscure blues and novelty numbers.
For more information and details about this concert, please contact Sandy at, Sandilion49@gmail.com. If this is the first time you have visited our blog, the location of these monthly concerts is in Manhattan. Hope to see you here soon.
Sold Out as of 10/6/14
Sold Out as of 10/6/14