On his new recording, Violet Hour Live at Firehouse 12, Cleaver reconvenes this all-star ensemble for a rare performance and live recording at the New Haven, Connecticut venue. Violet Hour was first assembled for Cleaver’s 2008 recording Detroit and features some of the most inspiring instrumentalists that have come into the drummers orbit, most of them also hailing from or having connections to Cleaver’s home town of Detroit, the state of Michigan or the Midwest.
The ensemble is made up of some of the best and most in demand musicians in jazz, all questing souls who fortunately managed to cross paths in New York City. Cleaver has known JD Allen since playing with the then teenaged tenor saxophonist in Rodney Whitaker’s band in Detroit. Originally from Lansing, Michigan, pianist Ben Waltzer was able to establish an instant rapport with Cleaver once they met in New York.
Chris Lightcap is as dependable a bassist as one can find and Cleaver has felt their bond as a unit on many performing and recording opportunities over the years. Woodwind master Andrew Bishop is the ensemble’s secret weapon, providing an instrument to suit whatever Cleaver’s compositions require. Since originally hearing him years ago in Lonnie Plaxico’s ensemble, Cleaver has been impressed with trumpeter Jeremy Pelt’s spirit and no holds barred directness.
Release Date: 1 November 2019
Format: CD | Digital
Label: Sunnyside Records
New Release Spotify Playlist
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Last modified: November 22, 2019