“Critics’ Picks – Top 5 Recording of the year.” – JazzTimes, Chuck Berg and Bret Primack
Arkadia Records recording artist, jazz soprano sax virtuoso Dave Liebman, together with his group and the great Brazilian percussionist Café, breaks new ground in this inspired album, entitled “David Liebman: New Vista”. Mixing Brazilian rhythms with penetrating ballads such as “Estaté”, “Beauty and the Beast”, and “Zingaro (Portrait in Black and White)”, this recording is, in the innovative Liebman’s words, his “most upbeat release to date.”
“His effervescent “New Vista”… reflecting the music of Brazil, Liebman sounds unusually comfortable and relaxed, as his fluid, cleanly articulated soprano lines dart, weave and flutter through the shifting grooves… Liebman displays a marvelous lyrical facility, bringing a beautiful, somewhat breathy tone to the seductive rhythms and intoxicating melodies. He adds tremendous warmth and feeling to these tunes… It’s hard to recall a Liebman project as buoyant and immediately appealing as New Vista.” – Downbeat, Jon Andrews
David Liebman’s New Vista is an extraordinary adventure. That, though, is what we have come to expect from Liebman, one of contemporary music’s true innovators. Although having just passed the half century mark, Lieb is playing with an intensity pulsing with youthful energies.
“At the same time, his playing possesses a Solomon-like wisdom. On one level, there’s a brilliant reconfiguring of the past, of Dave’s own considerable legacy, as well as those of Miles (Davis) and Trane (John Coltrane). And yet the music springs from the immediacy of the moment. So while imbued with the spirits of the giants, Dave’s impassioned quests once again push past the present and into the future.
In the aptly titled “New Vista”, arguably Dave’s most assessable project to date, the inspiration comes in large part from Brazil. This, though, is not the Bossa Nova of your father – or mother. Indeed, it’s an electro-Amazonian voyage into an exotic and rhythmically charged neo-musical hyperspace, a magical realm in which myth and dream dance with joyous abandon.
I have no doubt that New Vista will stand as a landmark in Liebman’s already distinguished career. Its appeals are many. Its impact is immediate. Indeed, it’s serious and joyous fun at the summit by one of our great contemporary artists, saxophone extrodinaire, Dave Liebman.” – Dr. Chuck Berg
“Liebman has evolved a persuasively personal voice and a spare approach that not only focuses on the choice notes but the choice timbre to set them off.” – Gary Giddins, The Village Voice
Most well known as a key member of the seminal Miles Davis Quintet in the 1970s, Dave Liebman, along with notable musicians Phil Markowitz, Tony Marino, Jamey Haddad, Vic Juris, and Brazilian percussion master Café, creates this thrilling CD, “David Liebman: New Vista” that fuses Jazz with Brazilian influences; culminating in an exhilarating recording of Dave Liebman’s individual musical vision.
|1. New Vista||David Liebman||6:46|
|2. Estaté||B. Martino/B. Brighetti||5:18|
|3. Real Dreams||Phil Markowitz||7:05|
|4. So Far, So Close||Caris Visentin||5:23|
|5. Christmas Socks||David Liebman||6:03|
|6. Beauty and the Beast||Alan Menken/Howard Ashman||5:29|
|7. Jungle Glide||Phil Markowitz||7:00|
|8. Zingaro (Portrait in Black and White)||Antonio Carlos Jobim||5:51|
|9. The Gross Man||David Liebman||5:55|
David Liebman: Soprano sax and tenor sax
Vic Juris: Guitar
Phil Markowitz: Piano and synth
Tony Marino: Bass
Jamey Haddad: Drums and percussion
Produced by: Bob Karcy
Total Time: 54:58
What the Critics Say:
“… a fusion of soundscapes with a decidedly Brazilian flair. This music flows in a torrent of percussive wizardry and melodic lines that at times seem to defy the laws of gravity. New Vista stretches the Brazilian boundaries in unexpected and delightful ways… a rewarding album with that touch of magic that every good Brazilian recording strives to offer.” – Scott Adams, The Brazilian Review
“(New Vista) generates a gust of fresh air. Liebman is a player of genuine virtuosity and his command over both his instrument and any context in which it might appear make this album appealing. The music announces its distinction early on through the title track, a Liebman composition that darts through samba rhythms on the wings of a boppish melody. Liebman has… with vast talent and good taste, succeeded in creating music sometimes strong enough to blow back your hair… out of elements that seldom carry such force.” – William Stephenson, Jazziz
“Saxophonist Liebman’s played so well for so long in such varied settings that he may currently be taken for granted. This recording is… full of subtlety and lyricism… on which he contributes fluid, attractive solos.” – Harvey Pekar, JazzTimes
“Former Miles Davis saxophonist David Liebman is one of jazz’s most imaginative sax players.” – Gavin Magazine
“New Vista is an astute and penetrating blend of free-bop and Brazilian sounds that will go over equally well with the jazz hard core and those who don’t like to find themselves asking, ‘Where’s the melody?’ after they’ve bought an album.” – James Isaacs, Boston Sidewalk Choice
“EDITOR’S CHOICE.” – Rick Marx, jazzcentralstation
“New Vista… is masterful in that Liebman is charged, negotiating his horn splendidly, tunefully and lovingly testing its boundaries. To be sure, the saxophonist/leader shines consistently… proving his stature as one of the outstanding saxmen of our day.” – Steven A. Loewy, Cadence
“David Liebman knows only one way to play: with passion and total commitment. New Vista shows that music needn’t be simple or calculated to be accessible. The themes included on this recording are as breezy and hummable as anything on the so-called ‘smooth jazz’ radio airwaves, yet Liebman’s commitment is always evident.” – James Hale, Planet Jazz CD Review
About Dave Liebman:
As a teenager, when he first caught sight (and sound) of John Coltrane playing at New York’s famous Birdland Club, David Liebman fell instantly in love with jazz. A virtuoso on the soprano sax, and an innovative composer, Lieb’s attachment to jazz has always been something more than musical. The spirit behind the music and the community of musicians and listeners all figure into his life in jazz.
The Beginning with Elvin Jones and Miles Davis:
Born in Brooklyn, NY in 1946, Liebman grew up playing a variety of instruments and studying jazz with the likes of Lennie Tristano, Joe Allard, and Charles Lloyd. Just after graduating from NYU with a degree in American history, he helped to found Free Life Communication, a jazz musician’s co-operative. He also joined Ten Wheel Drive in 1970, one of the early jazz fusion/rock groups. After about two years with them, he moved to the saxophone/flute position in the group of legendary Coltrane drummer, Elvin Jones. In 1973, his apprenticeship reached its zenith when Miles Davis invited him to join his group.
Liebman’s Musical Groups:
His head constantly abubble with new ideas, Lieb has headed a number of groups, playing in a variety of styles. His first group, which he formed with Bob Moses in 1970, was called Open Sky Trio. In 1973, together with pianist Richard Beirach, he formed Lookout Farm, which toured the world, made several records, and garnered first place in Down Beat’s 1976 International Critic’s Poll in the category, Group Most Deserving of Wider Recognition. In 1981, together with Beirach, George Mraz, and Al Foster, he formed a group called Quest. Quest reached its peak between 1984 and 1991, after the addition of bassist Ron McClure and drummer Billy Hart.
When speaking of Dave Liebman it is impossible to overlook his faithful companion and the instrument of his passion — the soprano sax. Though he began his career playing all manner of horns, he decided at the end of the 70’s to dedicate himself exclusively to the soprano sax. Appreciative critics and fans have consistently listed him among the top five soprano saxophonists in the world. A number of European orchestras and chamber ensembles, with whom he has played and recorded, have commissioned works especially designed to capture unique brand of playing.
Educator and Clinician:
Lieb’s total commitment to jazz is manifest in the creation in 1989 of the International Association of Jazz Educators (IAJE), an organization with members in 40 different countries dedicated to connecting jazz teachers to students. His own erudition and talents as a teacher have made him much in demand at workshops and clinics around the world. On a regular basis, the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), which has honored him with grants for composition and performance, awards grants to musicians who wish to study with him.
Recordings with Arkadia Records:
And yet, even with all his organizational and pedagogical efforts, Lieb’s first love remains the music itself. He had recorded dozens of albums under his own name and was a featured sideman on nearly 200 others. Signaling his intention to focus his music making energies, he signed an exclusive recording agreement with New York’s Arkadia Jazz, recording four highly acclaimed albums, and appearing on several others. Together with the acclaimed David Liebman Group, he has recorded the album “New Vista”, which came out in early 1997. Other albums that Liebman has recorded for Arkadia Records are a recording of John Coltrane’s ethereal masterpiece, “Meditation Suite”, a joint project with guitarist Pat Metheny entitled “The Elements: Water” and “Dave Liebman Plays Puccini: A Walk in the Clouds”. Liebman received a Grammy Award Nomination for his performance of “My Favorite Things” on the album, “Arkadia Jazz All-Stars: Thank You, John (Our Tribute to John Coltrane)”.
In 2011, Dave Liebman was honored as a National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Jazz Master. One of the jazz world’s most innovative and dedicated citizens, Liebman does not have to wrestle with the temptation to rest on his laurels—the thought has never occurred to him.