The Joel Frahm Trio tour the album ‘The Bright Side’

The Joel Frahm Trio released The Bright Side on Anzic Records in 2021, and will be touring Europe and the UK to celebrate its release. The album received rave reviews across the globe.

Pianoless trios can sound shambolic, even with great players, as if everyone is bailing furiously to keep the boat from swamping. Here, though, the trio plays as a unit, with absolute confidence… He called a previous album We Used To Dance. These guys still do. ★★★★

Brian Morton – Downbeat

Here are the dates for the upcoming tour:

  • April 25 Smalls (New York, NY USA)
  • April 27 North Light Arts Centre (Leeds, UK)
  • April 28 Pizza Express (London, UK)
  • April 29 Bray Jazz Festival (Bray, Ireland)
  • April 30 Bennigans (Derry, UK)
  • May 1st Derry Jazz Festival (Derry, UK)
  • May 2nd Tubes (Graz, Austria)
  • May 3rd Tubes (Graz, Austria)
  • May 4th Lemon Rock (Granada, Spain)
  • May 5th ClassiJazz (Almería, Spain)

The Joel Frahm Trio is a new band featuring Frahm on tenor and soprano saxophones, Dan Loomis on bass, and Ernesto Cervini on drums. The Bright Side is their debut recording for Anzic Records, and is the culmination of a musical partnership that has developed over the course of many tours and recording sessions spanning the last decade.

Frahm first encountered the chord-less trio format as a teenager, and says he was “mesmerized by the music they created and hooked by the feeling of freedom and space the “chordless” trio provided me as a listener.” He was part of several bands that fit that description: In the 1990s, Matt Wilson’s Quartet with Frahm and Andrew D’Angelo playing their musical version of Abbott and Costello with Wilson and Yosuke Inoue facilitating the antics on drums and bass, respectively.

The Millennium brought a seven year trio residency at Bar Next Door in Greenwich Village featuring Joe Martin on bass and Bill Campbell on drums. There were many nights at Smalls Jazz Club and later at Wilson Live featuring Frahm’s trio with bassist and composer Omer Avital and drummer Anthony Pinciotti, another band that continues to work consistently. In fact, Frahm’s debut recording, Sorry No Decaf was initially envisioned as a trio CD before David Berkman was added on piano. This recording marks Frahm’s return to this formative trio format, this time as a bandleader.

The trio was born at a masterclass at the University of Toronto, as an offshoot of Cervini’s band Turboprop. In the ensuing years, Loomis and Cervini took the reins and began to book gigs for the ensemble, and on their first European tour a repertoire began to take shape, comprised almost entirely of recently penned original songs by each member of the band. The music runs the gamut: from ‘X-Friends’, Dan Loomis’ knotty re-imagining of the Klenner/Lewis standard ‘Just Friends’, to Frahm’s title tune ‘The Bright Side’, which was inspired by the opening riff of Lou Reed’s ‘Walk On The Wild Side’. Cervini contributes ‘The Beautiful Mystery’, a pensive and emotional tone poem that contrasts beautifully with upbeat tracks like Frahm’s ‘Beeline’, a new melody written on the chord changes of ‘My Shining Hour’.

The Joel Frahm Trio is dedicated to playing original music with humour, emotion, blues spirit and all the elements that people love about jazz. This record is the first offering from a formidable band you’ll be hearing more from soon. Also, you might be interested to learn that Frahm, a twenty year resident of the New York City jazz scene, moved to Nashville mid-July.

The Bright Side is available to purchase as a download or CD from Bandcamp and is also available to stream from the qobuz store.

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