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 Sunday, 20 April 2014
“Boot Camp” With Jeremy Walker at the Artists Quarter, December 26th Print E-mail
Written by Andrea Canter, Contributing Editor   
Wednesday, 26 December 2012

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Jeremy Walker©Andrea Canter
 

A bit more than three years ago, local saxophonist-turned-pianist/ composer/ bandleader/ impresario Jeremy Walker moved to New York where he continued to hone his keyboard skills while developing new projects. About two years later, Walker returned to the Twin Cities without missing a beat. Shortly after he debuted Boxcar with Wessell Anderson, Anthony Cox and JT Bates, Walker launched yet another project, a sax quartet dubbed Boot Camp. With some change in personnel, Boot Camp returns, this time to the Artists Quarter stage on December 26th. In addition to Walker on piano, this configuration includes Brandon Wozniak on sax, Chris Bates on bass, and Miguel Hurtado on drums.

 

Minneapolis native Jeremy Walker (aka “Boot”) started playing the saxophone at age ten, turning to jazz at age 14. After founding the short-lived Brilliant Corners club in 2003, he was named Best Local Impresario by City Pages; he also founded the Jazz Is Now organization (and led the Nownet) and served as the first curator of the Dakota Late Night series. When nerve and joint problems interfered with the saxophone, Walker immersed himself in the piano, studying with David Berkman and Frank Kimbrough via a Jerome Foundation Grant, and turning more deeply to composing. With Duke Ellington as his key influence since his teens, Walker also notes that he admires Andrew Hill and Thelonious Monk. Improvising and composing are the yin and yang; “they need each other desperately,” notes Walker. Walker currently leads the Small City Trio, which released its debut recording, The Pumpkins Reunion, in 2010, in addition to Boxcar and the Bootet. He was recruited to write a six-part blog for Walker Art Center and MnArtists.org, entitled “Jazz Is a Bastard,” and has been a regular contributor to MnArtists.org. He has also been commissioned by Jackson State University (AL) and has written over fifty compositions for Small City Trio, the NOWnet, and the Bootet. Jeremy’s latest work includes scoring Photographic Justice: The Corky Lee Story (release date 2013), and  Seven Psalms, a project for jazz ensemble with solo voice and choir debuting this spring.

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Brandon Wozniak©Andrea Canter
Saxman Brandon Wozniak grew up in Colorado and Indiana, earned his BA from Indiana University under the tutelage of David Baker, and spent a few years living in New York and touring with the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra. Since arriving in the Twin Cities in 2006, he has performed with local bands including the Dave King Trucking Company, Monk in Motian, the Adam Meckler Quintet, the Bryan Nichols Quintet, Zacc Harris Quartet, Impulso and in varying combinations with Adam Linz, Billy Peterson, Dean Magraw, Kenny Horst, and more. He’s becoming known as an inventive composer as well as improviser, and expects to put out his first CD as leader in the coming year.

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Chris Bates©Andrea Canter
Chris Bates and his brother, drummer JT, grew up with jazz, sons of trumpeter/bandleader Don Bates. He began bass lessons in 4th grade and progressed to jazz studies at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire before returning to the Twin Cities to study with Anthony Cox. A member of the Motion Poets, Chris was a 1999 McKnight Composer Fellow, and often lends his compositions to the many ensembles that he juggles throughout his busy performance schedule. Over his career, he has played with Mose Allison. Lee Konitz, Joe Lovano, Steven Bernstein, Howard Levy, Michael Attias, Ira Sullivan, Bill Carrothers, Eric Alexander, and Tim Sparks. In addition to his new bands (Chris Bates Quintet and Good Vibes), he plays regularly with the Atlantis Quartet, Red Planet, How Birds Work, Volcano Insurance, Enormous Quartet, Framework and tours with Todd Clouser’s A Love Electric. He has played solo concerts using both acoustic and electronic instruments, and appears on over 30 recordings.

 

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Miguel Hurtado&Andrea Canter
Drummer Miguel Hurtado graduated from Minneapolis South High in 2006 and went on to earn his degree in jazz studies from the Manhattan School of Music. After returning to the Twin Cities in spring 2010, he has quickly become a working member of the local jazz scene. He’s off to a good start, playing in the past year with John Raymond, Javier Santiago, Jon Weber, Marquis Hill, Joe Strachan, Jeremy Walker and more,  as well as leading his own ensembles at the Twin Cities Jazz Festival and Artists Quarter. But he’s also expanding his musical resume, playing with some local pop and R&B singers, particularly Alicia Steele, vocalist/rapper Toussaint Morrison, and Davina and the Vagabonds.

 

Too much Christmas ham? Pre and Post holiday shopping? Too little live music? Come to the Artists Quarter on December 26th, feast on the best of area live jazz (starting at 7 pm with Steve Kenny and the Bastids before the 9 pm opening of Boot Camp!), and enjoy the best holiday bargain -- $5 cover (no cover for the opening early show).

 

The Artists Quarter is located at 408 St Peter Street in the lower level of the Hamm Building in downtown St. Paul; www.artistsquarter.com



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