Wednesday, January 27th 2010
Darius Jones’ Elizabeth-Caroline Unit featuring: Fay Victor and Sarah Dyson
Ben Gerstein: Trombone
Charlie Looker: Baritone Guitar
Caley Monahon-Ward: Violin
Nick Anderson: Drums
Darius Jones: Alto Sax and Composition
PointofDeparture.org’s Ed Hazell writes, “alto saxophonist Darius Jones delivers one of the most impressive debuts in recent memory, displaying a remarkably well-developed concept and individual sound. Jones has a big, fleshy, lived-in tone, with a vibrato that owes as much to Johnny Hodges as it does to Albert Ayler. It’s defiant, vulnerable, proud, and weary; there is laughter and sobbing in it.”
Jason Crane, host of The Jazz Session and columnist at PopDose.com, adds, “For his debut statement, 31-year-old Jones wanted to tell his story. To talk about what it means to be poor and black and struggling and intelligent in this day and age. Jones has fit all that and more into an incredible recording that will make you sing, make you weep and make you marvel.”
Darius Jones is a Brooklyn-based alto saxophonist, composer, and producer. He joined the New York music community in 2005 after living and studying in Richmond, Va. Jones graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University with a Bachelors in Jazz Studies in 2003 and received a Master’s Degree in Jazz Performance/Composition from New York University in 2008. He received an Advanced Certificate in New Music Education at New York University while also teaching New Music Improvisation there for a year as an adjunct professor.
In 2008, Darius received the Van Lier Fellowship awarded by Roulette. The fellowship awarded him a cash prize and concluded with a concert in April 2009 where Jones presented his chamber ensemble, the Elizabeth-Caroline Unit, a project dedicated to new works for voice. Darius was signed to AUM Fidelity records in Feb. of 2009, with his first album as a leader, Man’ish Boy (A Raw and Beautiful Thing), released on Oct. 13. The record features his trio with Bob Moses and Cooper-Moore and reflects on his time growing up in the south as a child.
Darius comes from a diverse musical background that lead to his unique and soulful approach to music. He has composed and performed in electro-acoustic music, chamber ensembles, contemporary and avant-garde jazz groups, modern dance performances, and multi-media events. In Richmond, he formed a multi-media and performance art group called the Klimt Experience. The group combined modern dance, visual art, poetry, animation, and music into a live performance. The Klimt Experience was featured on the front page of Richmond’s Style Weekly’s Night and Day section in 2002. Darius was also interviewed by Richmond.com about the project in 2002. Darius has also been featured on the BBC’s Jazz on 3 and Jason Crane’s Jazz Sessions on All About Jazz.
Darius enjoys playing with a steady group of artists and improvisers including the Cooper-Moore Trio, Mike Pride’s From Bacteria to Boys, Nioka Workman’s House Arrest Band, William Hooker’s Bliss Quartet, Trevor Dunn’s Proof Readers, Lewis Barnes’ Hampton Roads, Mara Rosenbloom Quartet, and Period. Darius has collaborated with Andrew D’angelo, Esther Lamneck, William Parker, Jim Black, Charlie Looker, Dafna Naphtali, Sam Hilmer, Weasal Walters, Angelica Sanchez, Nate Wooley, S.E.M Ensemble, Lisle Ellis, Rob Brown, Ben Gerstein, Taylor Ho Bynum, Warren Smith, Alex Waterman, Sara Schoenbeck, Fay Victor, Bob Moses, Bern Nix, Sarah Dyson, et al. In 2006, Darius produced a record for Korean jazz vocalist Sunny Kim titled Android Ascension, which was released on YDS Music in Korea in 2008. He also produced a record, Sugar, for country-folk artist Mary Bragg in 2008. Darius’ music has recently taken him around the US and to Europe, the Netherlands, and Canada. Performances include the Vision Festival, Just Music Festival, Rumor Festival, Sons D’hiver Festival, Saalfelden Jazz Festival, FONT Festival, New Languages Festival, JVC Festival, Terrastock Festival, etc. Darius co-leads a band with Travis LaPlante, Andrew Smiley, and Jason Nazary called Little Women, which toured nationally in 2008 to promote the release of their first record, Teeth, on Sockets and Gilgongo Records. Little Women is a project that explores the extremes of sound by using extended techniques and acoustic manipulation.