Composer David Sanford leads the Pittsburgh Collective big band “ five saxophones, five trumpets, five trombones, piano, electric guitar, bass, drums, and congas “ in his debut, full-length album. The CD comprises world premiere recordings, works composed while Sanford was in residence at the American Academy in Rome, Italy, as winner of the prestigious Rome Prize. Cellist Matt Haimovitz joins the Collective in Sanford’s new cello concerto, Scherzo Grosso, which is the latest installment in Haimovitz’s ‘Buck the Concerto’ series of commissions for cello with unusual pairings, as well as a new version of Sanford’s Seventh Avenue Kaddish.
With David Sanford as bandleader and creative magnet, an eclectic mix of jazz, classical, Latin and jam-based musicians from across the U.S. and Japan come together in the Pittsburgh Collective. Recorded live on May 29, 2005, on the main stage of NYC’s Knitting Factory, the new album captures the kinetic energy and musical ingenuity of some of today’s jazz and classical heavyweights, including trumpeters Dave Ballou, Brian McWhorter, and Hiro Noguchi, pianist Geoffrey Burleson, saxophonists Adam Kolker, Ted Levine, and Jon Nelson, trombonists Mike Christianson and Benjamin Herrington, and David Fabris on electric guitar. Add Haimovitz’s blazing cello and the result is a jazz-funk-bebop-contemp-classical caffeine substitute from one of the hottest big bands since Mingus and Mahavishnu.