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Dee Dee Bridgewater, Berklee students led by Shirazette Tinnin play music of Horace Silver, one night only

Scott Haas
Dee Dee Bridgewater, Berklee students led by Shirazette Tinnin play music of Horace Silver, one night only
Singer/songwriter Dee Dee Bridgewater performs with Berklee College of Music students Thursday, Nov. 3 at 7 p.m. PHOTO: HERNAN RODRIGUEZ

Singer and songwriter Dee Dee Bridgewater and Berklee College of Music Associate Professor Shirazette Tinnin are collaborating on a one-time-only performance on Thursday, Nov. 3 at 7 p.m. at the Red Room at Cafe 939. Featuring the work of pianist Horace Silver, a progenitor of jazz compositions, the evening, part of Berklee’s Signature Series, is a rare opportunity to experience the craft of these musicians up close in an intimate setting.

“I was invited by Shirazette,” Bridgewater told the Banner, “and the evening will feature material from Horace Silver. Horace was a pianist and composer who played with the great drummer Art Blakey; I just love his music! There’s a funkiness to his compositions. I have always, always loved them, having been introduced to his music when I was 15, eons ago.”

Structured around the Dee Dee Bridgewater Ensemble, musical direction will be provided by Tinnin, who is a composer and bandleader as well as an academic.

A student ensemble performing with Bridgewater and Tinnin will breathe life into Silver’s jazz classics. The ensemble includes Rares Gherman (guitar), Caleb Texier (piano), Aki Oliviero (guitar), Joe Tavarez (drums), Chick Green (drums), Camden Bunker (baritone saxophone, doubles), Ian Banno (bass), Rinat Fishman (tenor saxophone, doubles) and Brandon Volel (trumpet).

“The students were selected using an open audition process that was run by me the second week of school,” Tinnin told the Banner. “I made the final decision based off of their sound, ability to play multiple reed instruments, feel and composure.”

The collaboration between Grammy Award-winning Bridgewater, percussion faculty member and Fulbright scholar Tinnin, and a promising group of students rising in their careers suggests that Silver’s familiar melodies may take surprising and original turns.

“It’s gonna be amazing,” said Bridgewater, “because of the music and trust between the musicians.”

The songs are culled from Bridgewater’s tribute album to Silver, entitled “Love and Peace,” and include his compositions “Nica’s Dream,” “Permit Me to Introduce You to Yourself,” “Señor Blues” and “The Tokyo Blues.” As a co-founder with Art Blakey of the Jazz Messengers, Silver established a number of jazz standards.

Asked about the ongoing influence of Silver on contemporary music, Bridgewater said, “The fact that a lot of the younger musicians are placing more emphasis on rhythm, well, that could be influenced by Horace Silver’s work. He wrote hummable melodies. While there is this taboo that jazz is intellectual, his music always has funk. And  Horace, to my knowledge, was never criticized for putting funk in his music!”

arts, Berklee College of Music, Dee Dee Bridgewater, jazz, music
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