Saxophonist Michael Blake has spent his career crafting compelling music written specifically for the unique artists who comprise the ensembles he leads. This latest project offers him the opportunity to develop new approaches to composition and to strengthen his ties to the Vancouver music scene. Using both composition and improvisation, Komagata Maru Blues is a profoundly personal expression of life in contemporary multicultural society—one that will inspire musicians and audience members to explore themes of difference, tolerance, and respect as considered from multiple perspectives.
Consistently making music that bristles with originality and vision, Canadian born Michael Blake has made New York City his home for over 25 years. During that time he has recorded with countless musicians, scored music for TV and film and performed in the worlds finest concert halls and jazz clubs. The influential tenor and soprano saxophonist also lends his talents to projects led by master musicians including Ben Allison, Henry Butler, Erik Friedlander, Enrico Rava, Sam Blaser and Steven Bernstein.
Formed in 1998, Barking Sphinx is a collective of exceptional musicians; members of Vancouver’s
improvised music scene who are well known locally, nationally and internationally - giving our city an international name as a significant centre of contemporary music and musique actuelle. The
public concerts presented by Barking Sphinx provide Vancouver audiences with an opportunity to see some of the world’s finest improvising musicians perform both structured and unstructured work. This community of artists combine, often creating a cross pollination of styles and genres that result in enthralling and incomparable events for performers and audiences alike.
Michael Blake, saxophone; JP Carter, trumpet; Peggy Lee, cello; André Lachance, bass; Ron Samworth, guitar; Chris Gestrin, keyboards; Dylan van der Schyff, drums
plus guests Emma Postl, vocals and Neelamjit Dhillon, tabla
This concert is part of the 2014 TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival