Art of Life Records is proud to present 28-year-old Canadian saxophonist Ryan Oliver's debut recording. Joining Ryan on Convergence" are Duncan Hopkins on acoustic bass, Bob McLaren on drums, Bernie Senensky on piano and Jake Wilkinson on trumpet. The album features three standards, It's Easy to Remember" by Rodgers & Hart, The End of a Love Affair" by Edward C. Redding and Mamacita" by Joe Henderson, as well as six original songs composed by Oliver. Convergence" was recorded and mixed by Walter Sobczak at National Treasures Studio at Puck's Farm in Ontario, Canada on December 5th and 6th 2005 and was made possible through the generous support of the Ontario Arts Council. All tracks have been digitally mastered using 24-bit digital technology.
Born in Williams Lake, British Columbia, Oliver has been lighting up the bandstands of Canada's West Coast, Switzerland (Montreux Jazz Festival), Amsterdam (where he spent a year studying at the request of Misha Mengelberg) and Toronto since he was a teenager. Oliver is now a familiar face in many Toronto Jazz ensembles. As a single listening to Convergence makes clear, Oliver has synthesized his many influences into a coherent Jazz sound that is both reverential to his musical mentors and altogether sui generis. His unique musical voice caught the collective ear" of many musicians, including bassist Dave Young, guitarist Pat Coleman and pianist Bernie Senensky, all of whom employ Oliver in their ensembles. Further, his unique voice" distinguishes him from other Jazz saxophonists working in Toronto, Amsterdam and New York - three Jazz communities in which Oliver has participated. As the album's title rightly acknowledges, the lessons and influences of his various teachers and mentors (Coltrane, Gordon, Shorter, Rollins, Pat LaBarbera, Ralph Bowen, guitarist Pat Coleman and the aforementioned Dwyer) have converged into a singular improvisatory approach. The respective talents of Oliver and his well-chosen side musicians have similarly converged on this mixed program of standards and Oliver originals for a result that captures the immediately identifiable sound that is good Jazz music.
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