Voice

How can we recognize the difference between “good” art and  “bad” art?  The question is inherently unanswerable – ‘good’ and ‘bad’ are subjective terms, and the question implies an objective answer: choose good/bad like you would choose yes/no or black/white. Before we pass any judgements, we must realize that context HUGELY affects our feelings for a work of art.  Imagine a picture of two solid-colored squares – on the wall of an elementary school hall, you might think “pretty easy” – on the wall of the MOMA, you might think “pretty brilliant.”  But that’s an oversimplification – to understand the squares, you need to know the title and some information about the artist’s background.  If you learn that the artist has also drawn highly detailed …

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New Project

I’m very excited to announce that I’m just one month away from heading to the studio to record my first “solo” CD featuring a great band and original works of mine.  The band will be performing the tunes on Sunday May 8th as the next installment of the Nashville Jazz Workshop’s Contemporary Jazz Series.  Then the studio awaits the following days! If you’d like to find out more about the project, including how you can be involved, please check out my kickstarter page. Tunes from the Workshop – the Debut Album of Evan Cobb thanks! -evan

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Sexy Sax Man – Not What You Think

So by now, you’re likely to have seen the latest viral video craze – the “Sexy Sax Man. ” If you’re lucky enough to have spared yourself, allow me to explain: the video features Sergio Flores playing the memorable saxophone riff from George Michael’s first single and 1984 megahit “Careless Whisper.”  The video has gone viral because Flores delivers the song in the great tradition of Tom Green and Jackass: inappropriate and random settings, erotically dressed, complete with pelvic thrusts. When I first watched the video, I immediately recognized the saxophone riff, but couldn’t remember from where.  That got me thinking about composition – some of the most effective and long-lasting music features riffs or tunes that get stuck in our head, no matter the …

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Speaking of Jazz Singers

Well it’s a beautiful February morning here in Nashville.  After an incredibly rewarding weekend of playing with Gladys Knight, spring has descended upon us here and is working hard to make us forget about our frozen troubles. One moment that we SHOULD try to freeze in time is this one. I recall seeing Esperanza play bass in Donald Harrison’s quintet at Newport in the summer of 2007 and being blown away by her playing and presence.  I didn’t know anything about her then and she didn’t sing on this gig, but her love and passion for music and performance were communicated as clearly as any artist I have EVER seen or heard. Speaking of inspiring jazz singers, I’m very happy to announce the special guest …

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How do I know if I’m ready?

The onset of February has made me realize I’ve been downright awful at keeping up with posts here – my apologies!  Rest assured that the recent inactivity of this blog in no way reflects the musical happenings here in Tennessee. I’ve finally got the ball rolling on my most important project to date, although I am hesitant to talk about it before I have all of the details finalized. Exciting news: next week I’ll be backing up Gladys Knight with the Nashville Symphony.  The “Empress of Soul” had her major hits before my time, but if you haven’t listened to ‘Midnight Train to Georgia‘ recently, you absolutely must! The monthly jam session started off 2011 very well with a great performance and information session provided …

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Last NJW Jam of 2010

Cold rainy days and 5:00pm dark have shocked me into the realization that we are suddenly near the end of 2010 – thanks Mother Nature.  Besides overeating and and mittens, the end of the calendar year comes with another caveat, the last Nashville Jazz Workshop Jam Session of the year. “But it’s only November!”  True.  But the third Sunday of December is officially holiday season, so we’ll be taking that month off from the jam and coming back in January, just in time to take your Super Bowl bets. But do not despair, as the NJW Jam has been growing strong and will finish with a flourish!  This coming Sunday November 21st, we’ll be featuring the amazing pianist Bruce Dudley, fresh off his DMA Lecture/Recital …

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The Week That Is

For many years I’ve believed the adage “when it rains, it pours.”  This was of course ALL too true here in Nashville this past May.  On the lighter side of the adage, it is true for my schedule this upcoming week.  Allow me a moment to fill you in on the fun details. Tuesday night I’ll be playing with the Nashville Jazz Orchestra at its weekly spot in East Nashville at the French Quarter Cafe starting at 7pm. Wednesday night is jazz night at Sportman’s Grille in Hillsboro Village, and this week I’ll be leading a quartet of fine musicians through originals and standards. This coming Thursday, Friday, and Saturday marks my first service with the Nashville Symphony, and we’ll be playing a fun concert …

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Nashville’s Jazz Party of the Year

This coming Sunday is the big day for the Nashville Jazz Workshop’s Annual Fundraiser.  The event kicks off at 4pm at the Limelight (right across from the Titans’ stadium) and is filled with food, a huge auction, and of course great music featuring many of Nashville’s finest musicians. More details about the musicians, auction items, and event in general are available here, including a link to buy tickets.  Hope to see you there! -evan

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Laugh laugh giggle giggle SPLAT!

While the weather and my mind tell me it’s still summertime, my teaching schedule is telling me that we are most definitely in September, as hard as it may be to believe.  I’ve got some fun gigs on the horizon, notably joining the amazing vocalist Dara Tucker for her set at the Franklin Jazz Festival.  I’ll also be traveling with Nashville’s finest funk band The Dynamites for shows in Brooklyn and near Boston. Since it is September, I also wanted to tell you about the next featured guest at the Nashville Jazz Workshop Jam Session. But first a joke. How do you make a euphonium player’s car more aerodynamic? Take off the Domino’s Pizza sign. Okay back to reality.  Our next featured guest is a …

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