An die musik live
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The Flail + Peabody Jazz Student Ensemble
(960 days ago)
From: 08:00 PM
To: 09:00 PM
Location: An die Musik Live
Dan Blankinship (trumpet)
Stephan Moutot (saxophone)
Brian Marsella (piano)
Reid Taylor (bass)
Matt Zebroski (drums)
Opening Act: Peabody Jazz Student Ensemble
Kevin B. Clark, guitar
Colin Rosso, percussion
Jonathan Guo, double bass
Adam Corson, saxophone
Alex Crean, tenor
"The Flail is a quintet composed of post-music-school cats in their early 30s who rip up the joint... A touch
experimental, a bit cacophonous, The Flail artfully lives up to its name."
-- Karl Stark of the Philadelphia Inquirer
"Sometimes playing it straight is good, and in the case of The Flail it's very good… Despite a name that
suggests spastic movement this is measured, gorgeously executed and warm... [They] move with seamless,
telepathic grace, each accenting and lifting the other's contributions splendidly…”
-- Dennis Cook of JamBase.com
“What a magnificent discovery! What good there is, in my job as a critic, is that sometimes, far too rarely,
one discovers a group like The Flail... Their jazz is consonant, inventive, and never falls into easy effects or
sounds unpleasing to the ear.”
-- Michel Bedin of Jazz Hot
The Flail is a New York City-based jazz quintet. The members met while attending the New School for Jazz
and Contemporary Music and quickly became friends. From its inception in 2001, the Flail has focused on
developing a group sound; as such, there has never been a 'leader' of the band - every member has an equal
voice, musically and otherwise. This attitude is woven through all aspects of their music.
The Flail's repertoire is mainly comprised of original compositions written by all the members of the band.
Some of these compositions were inspired by direct experiences the band has gone through together. Others
were written with the personalities and musical sound of the members in mind. Some were even written as
a challenge. Rather than thinking in terms of genres and styles, or of even 'old' and 'new', The Flail strives
to tell their story through music.
The Flail has performed at some of the biggest and most prestigious venues and events in the world. Over the course of four tours in France they have played more than fifty concerts to packed houses in Paris,
Lyon, Grenoble, Renne, Ardeche, and Marseille; highlights include Jazz a Vienne (2002, 2004) and the Marseille Festival du Jazz des Cinq Continents (2002, 2005). Their latest tour (2007) brought them to
Madrid, Spain, for the first time. In New York City they perform at such places as Smalls Jazz Club, Fat Cat and Sweet Rhythm, while on tours of the East Coast they frequent Blues Alley and Twins Jazz in
Washington, DC, An Die Musik in Baltimore, and Chris’ Jazz Café in Philadelphia.
The Flail has released three albums, Live in France (2002), taken from one particularly lively concert in Grenoble, Never Fear (2006), recorded at the famed Acousti Studio in Paris, and The Flail (2008), recorded
live at Smalls in NYC in November 2007.
- In 2002, they were chosen to headline a concert showcasing young jazz talent at Carnegie Hall.
- In 2002 and 2004 they collaborated with an association of young French skateboarders from Villefontaine in putting on hip-hop shows in Lyon. Electric Flail? You bet! Funky Flail? Ah oui oui!
“I’d pay good money to see these guys play.” -- Jazz legend Kenny Barron
“The best young group I’ve heard in years. A real BAND.” --- Jazz legend Junior Mance
ABOUT THE BAND MEMBERS:
Dan was born and raised in a suburb of Richmond, VA. He began his musical life
by singing in church choirs and taking piano lessons while in elementary school,
and at age 11 started playing the trumpet. His early inspiration came from a tape
of Wynton Marsalis playing classical trumpet concertos. Over the next several
years Dan was selected for numerous regional and state-wide honor bands, leading
to him attending the Interlochen Arts Camp and Boston University Tanglewood
Institute summer programs while in high school. An Art Blakey recording, featuring
Lee Morgan on trumpet, peaked his first real interest in jazz.
Dan continued his musical education at the Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore,
where he stayed for two years immersed in classical music. At this point Dan
decided to abandon a ʻlegitʼ musical career and pursue jazz, among other things.
He took a two-year break from school to join the Baltimore-based funk band Jay
Jay, performing extensively in the mid-Atlantic region and learning volumes about
groove and song-writing. Dan then moved to NYC to attend the New School for
Jazz and Contemporary Music, where he completed his Bachelorʼs degree and met
the members of The Flail. His next and last stop on the formal education circuit
took him to the Queens College Aaron Copland School of Music, where he earned
a Masterʼs degree.
Since then Dan has gotten married, lived in Paris for a year, and managed to find
his own at least semi-functional way of navigating NYC life as a musician. He regularly
performs with small combos and big bands in styles ranging from modern
jazz to ʻtraditionalʼ jazz to hard-core salsa. Some of these groups are Boozinʼ &
Whorinʼ, the Harbor Conservatory Latin Big Band, the Fat Cat Big Band, Ray Riveraʼs
Sabor Latino, and the Blue Vipers of Brooklyn.
Some of his most influential teachers (trumpet or not) over the years have been
Laurie Frink, Charles Tolliver, David Ancker, Langston Fitzgerald III, Clinton
Adams, Vern Falby and Gary Thomas. He has shared the stage with the likes of
Wynton Marsalis, Jon Faddis, George Garzone and Jose Madera, and has performed
at such venues as the QE2 Floating Jazz Festival, the 9:30 Club in DC, the Cabaret
Sauvage in Paris, the Rosie OʼDonnell Show, and Carnegie Hallʼs Weill Recital Hall.
Stephan Moutot, saxophone
Stephan was born in Grenoble, France, on June 8, 1976. At the age of 11 he
began the saxophone at the school of music in Villefontaine, a small town
outside of Lyon. After graduating high school with a diploma, or ʻbacʼ, in
economy and sociology, he entered the department of jazz at the national
school of music in Villeurbanne. He studied there until 1999 with the professors
Gilbert Dojat and Jean Cohen.
At this time left for New York and the New School University, where he
stayed for five years and obtained a BFA in 2002. During this period in New
York, Stephan studied with George Garzone, Billy Harper, Mike Karn, Junior
Mance, Joe Chambers, Dave Glasser, Charles Tolliver and Doug Weiss. He
also participated in master classes with Joe Lovano, Dave Holland and Jack
Dejohnette. He was the recipient of both the Lavoisier scholarship from the
French Minister of Foreign Affairs and the esteemed Fulbright scholarship,
as well as a scholarship from SACEM (French equivalent of ASCAP).
His professional career began while he was still a student. He made his first
recording, “Dialogue”, at the age of 17 with the Devolution Jazz Duet, featuring
Martin Hugon on piano and himself on saxophones. He has played at
the Bataclan, the famous Parisian concert hall, with Clementine Celarier,
and has performed at numerous venues in France with such groups at the
Happy Stompers Big Band, the Micromegas de Francios Raulin, and Pein
dʼAutres. After the creation of The Flail he has toured in the U.S. and
throughout France. These five tours in France have included performances
at Jazz a Vienne and the Festival du Jazz des Cinq Continents in Marseille.
In the U.S. he has played at the QE2 Floating Jazz Festival, Carnegie Hall,
Sweet Rhythm, and many others. He currently resides in Paris, where he is
engaged in numerous musical projects.
Brian is an emerging artist in the improv music community. Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania,
Brian learned music by ear at age three from listening to his father, an amateur jazz musician,
play the saxophone and vibraphone. His first music loves were Tchaikovsky, Antonio Carlos
Jobim, and Scott Joplin. At five, Brian started to study classical piano and gave his first public
performance. Most of Brian's childhood was filled with the struggle of learning music and the
exhilaration of performance. At age eleven, Brian had has first professional "gig." Throughout his
teen years, Brian performed extensively around the Philadelphia area in a myriad of settings. A
friendship at that time with Philadelphia bassist, Lance Walker, whom had worked with Patti
LaBelle and Harold Melvin and the Blue Notes, opened Brian to the world of R&B, blues, funk, and
fusion, working with bands The Dukes of Destiny, The Elgins, and countless others. While doing
club dates at night and weddings on the weekends, Brian kept up his classical career as well. At
fourteen, Brian was the music director, conductor, and harpsichordist for the New Hope Performing
Arts Festival's production of Mozart's opera, Bastien and Batienna, which received rave
reviews. At sixteen, Brian gave his first full length concert at The James Lorah House, in
Doylestown, Pa. The concert included works of D. Scarlatti, Chopin, Brahms and the world premier
of Peter Cody's Sonata for Clarinet and Piano. Throughout this time, Brian was studying classical
piano with master, David Ancker.
Brian went on to study composition at the Westminster Choir College, and piano performance at
The Juilliard School and The Peabody Conservatory, having studied with teachers such as David
Dubal and Robert MacDonald. After a year hiatus from music, Brian moved to NYC and received
his BFA in jazz performance from the New School Jazz and Contemporary Music Program. There
he studied with Richie Beirach, George Garzone, Reggie Workman, Junior Mance, Joanne Brackeen,
and LeAnn Ledgerwood.
Since 2000, Brian has been a busy performing and recording artist, playing around the world with
some of the world's finest musicians. Brian has been a member of Brazilian percussionist, Cyro
Baptista's internationally acclaimed band, Beat the Donkey, since 2004. With Beat the Donkey,
Brian has performed throughout the US and Europe, having played Central Park Summer Stage,
Jazz at Lincoln Center, the Bethel Woods Jazz Festival, and the Planet Arlington World Music Festival.
This past year, Cyro and Brian have collaborated in forming the band, Vira Loucos, with bassist,
Shanir Blumenkrantz and drummer, Tim Keiper. The group has played Tonic, The Jazz Standard,
and MOMA, to frenzied audiences. Their debut album will be out this fall.
Brian is also a founding member of long-time band of friends, Caveman. Caveman has played
over 300 shows in the US and Canada, including performances at the 2002 Endless Mountain
Music Festival, 2003 New Orleans Jazz Festival, and Camp Bisco VI. Caveman has self-released
two albums, 'Before the World' (which features a track with friend, Matisyahu) and 'totem'. Brian
has also toured with Tzadik recording artist, Eyal Maoz's, 'Edom'. With Edom, Brian has performed
at The New York City Winter Jazz Festival, The Montreal Jazz Festival, and the oy!hoo festival in
NYC. The group will be recording a new album for Tzadik this year and will be performing in
Russia this fall.
Brian's other touring and recording credits include work with artists: Billy Martin, G. Calvin
Weston, Marshall Allen, Odean Pope, Dave Fuszinski, Anat Cohen, Byard Lancatser, Jamaladeen
Tacuma, Matisyahu, Trevor Dunn, Mary Halvorson, Briggan Kraus, Romero Lubambo, D.J. Logic,
Taylor McFerrin, George Garzone, Rick Iannicone, Elliot Levin, Warren Oree, Dennis Irwin, Jason
Smart, Edmar Castenada, Stephen Bernstein, Jon Madof, Erik Friedlander, Ches Smith, Baye
Kouyate; and groups: Mad Cow, Big Tree, Leana Song, Pharoah's Daughter, UB313, Chris Tunkle
Band, Circuit Breaker, Mother of All Bombs, Brentwood Estates, Exoskeleton, and Group Therapy
Reid was born in Jacksonville, Florida in 1973. He started playing
piano at the age of 7 and guitar two years later. His first band "The
Malefactors" was formed in the third grade with his next door
Throughout middle school and high school he played trumpet and
baritone, until turning to electric bass in 11th grade after hearing
the Minutemen album, 'Double Nickels on the Dime'. It wasn't until
late in high school that he started listening to Charles Mingus and
Thelonious Monk. This eventually lead him to follow his new found
inspiration in the contrabass.
In 1994 at the age of 22, he was pursuing a history degree from
American University in Washington D.C., and decided to take private
bass lessons. Steve Novosel, a top flight bass player in D.C.
was Reid's first teacher for the next two years. He frequented the
local jam sessions and found himself sitting in along side the legendary
Butch Warren, whom he studied with for years after. From
the beginning, he pursued getting the real sound out of the bass
and laying a firm foundation for the groove.
In 1998, Reid moved to New York and attended the New School
where he studied with the great Dennis Irwin. Since then, he has
played with a wide variety of musicians ranging from bebop legend
Cecil Payne to avant gardist Charles Gayle. He has appeared at
some of the most prominent jazz clubs in New York such as Smalls
and Sweet Rhythm, and plays weekly at the Fat Cat Jazz Club in the
Reid is also involved in many projects outside jazz including the
noise- improv unit Gunnar. Currently he is starting a new band with
his friend Aaron Dugan, guitarist of the band Matisyahu.
Matt Zebroski began his musical career playing piano and clarinet, switching to
drums at 12. He played his first professional gig at 16 in his hometown of Pittsburgh.
By 18, Matt enrolled at New School University in New York, studying with
some of the world¹s most notable jazz musicians, including Billy Hart, John Riley,
Charlie Persip, and Richie Beirach. Recognizing Matt¹s composition talents, Beirach
helped him hone his skills in writing and harmony. He developed into an accomplished
performer and instructor, playing with musicians such as critically
acclaimed pianist Roberta Picket, while maintaining teaching gigs from private lessons
to the Litchfield Summer Jazz Camp.
It was at New School where Matt began to find his place in the world of music. He
met guitarist Alex Skolnick, a member of the metal band Testament, who had
returned to school to continue his musical studies. As fate would have it, the two
shared a music theory class, and they established a solid friendship that turned
into a band. The two recruited bassist Nathan Peck, and in 2001 formed the Alex
Skolnick Trio. They have since built a solid reputation for rearranging classic heavy
metal songs in a modern improvisational setting.
Their visionary debut album, Goodbye To Romance: Standard For A New Generation,
was awarded 4 stars by Downbeat, and was praised in publications such as
Downbeat, The Village Voice and Jazziz. They have performed at music industry
conferences like CMJ in New York, SXSW in Austin, and have toured the US extensively,
also appearing live on XM Satellite Radio and Fox Morning News. The
groupʼs second album, Transformation (Magnatude), featured Mattʼs first compositional
contribution, the bluesy workout “Both Feet In.”
Matt has also performed and/or recorded with such artists as Bonnie Tyler, threetime
Grammy award winner Gil Goldstein, Broadway star Rob Evan, worldrenowned
cellist Dave Eggar, and Grammy award-winning Polka accordionist Alex
Meixner. He is the drummer for Attack Theatre, a nationally touring, critically
hailed ensemble that fuses music, dance and theater into a stunning multimedia
He is a founding member of the jazz quintet The Flail, who have released two
albums and toured the US and Europe. Since 2004, Matt has been involved with
The Dream Engine performing the music of multi-platinum songwriter/producer
Peabody Jazz Student Ensemble