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Chico Hamilton Releases New Album Featuring Jose James

SOURCE: Published: 2009-03-31
Chico Hamilton Jazz Legend Chico Hamilton Celebrates Copious Musical Influences in His Latest Album, Twelve Tones of Love

...one of the most polished, adventurous and inquisitive drummers in jazz...
Jazz Times

New York City - NEA Jazz Master Foreststorn “Chico" Hamilton takes listeners on a musical journey of his venerable career and the numerous people who have influenced it in his latest CD Twelve Tones of Love (Release: 4/14/09 Joyous Shout!). Adding to his 50-plus discography, Twelve Tones of Love celebrates Chico's lifelong romance with music. Composed for and performed with an enlarged ensemble, the album offers a glimpse into Chico's passion for music and the interpersonal relationships both past and present that he has cherished through his service to the muse.

Both opening and closing Twelve Tones of Love are bookend tracks “A Piece of Music" and “The Alto of Kelso" featuring one of Chicos oldest friends and multi-reedist Jack Kelso. Chico reminiscences about his younger days in Steinway written for childhood friend Gerald Wilson - with whom Chico fooled around with on the Steinway in a local shop in their shared LA neighborhood. One of Chico's former band mates from one of his classic '60s ensembles, George Bohanon, joins him on muted trombone in the playful song “George."

Featuring Chico on mallets, “Lazy Afternoon" welcomes vocalist Jose James, a former student of Chico's at the New School's Jazz and Contemporary Music program, of which Chico is a founding educator. One of the few covers on this album, “Lazy Afternoon" was originally recorded by Chico with Tony Bennett for his album The Beat of My Heart.

Acknowledging bop as an inspiration, Chico attempts to capture Charlie Parker's melodic aspect of playing in “The Charlie Parker Suite." “In my thoughts of Bird, it seemed to me that today's sax players are aware of Bird's rhythmic sophistication in terms of his solos, but have forgotten how beautifully Bird would play the melody, and play off of the melody in his solos," explains Chico. “Like 'Trane, they've missed Bird's melodic sophistication." “The Charlie Parker Suite" was commissioned by and premiered at the 15th annual Charlie Parker Festival (New York City, 2007).

About Chico Hamilton
Known for representing jazz in its purest form, octogenarian Chico Hamilton shows virtually no signs of fatigue. Saluted by the Kennedy Center as a “Living Jazz Legend" and appointed to the National Council on the Arts, Chico Hamilton is considered one of the most important living jazz artists and composers. He is currently on a national BORDERS Bookstore tour with his band Euphoria. While continuing to teach at the New School University Jazz Program where he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate degree, Chico is busy writing his autobiography, composing and performing music for film, and working on additional album releases for 2009.

Twelve Tones of Love BORDERS Bookstore Tour:
April 18th Glendale, NY 597 BORDERS @ Atlas Park
April 30th New York City, NY 592 BORDERS @ Columbus Circle
May 15th Philadelphia, PA 21 BORDERS
May 29th Farmington, CT 55 BORDERS
June 15th Rochester, NY Rochester International Jazz Festival


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