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The song of the month free download is “Roll ‘em Joe,” written for the great guitarist from Toronto (Barrie) Ontario, Joe Huron. It’s the last track on Mark’s “New York Session” album. George Cables is on piano, Essiet Essiet on bass and Victor Lewis on drums. 

“Roll ‘em Joe” has an African 12/8 beat. When Mark plays this song in a live performance, when he’s closer to home and has more instruments available, he sometimes supplements the group with either his triangle or djembe on this song. Mark developed his deep love and respect for the djembe working with Asad Oberoi, who played djembe in The Mark Lewis International Quintet. The quintet played Mark’s music written in African rhythms and included musicians from India, Holland, Africa and South America. Mark enjoys playing African sounds and used to teach African music at conservatories in Holland, to help teach jazz.


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Alone Together (Live)

Mark Lewis & David Friesen

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Veteran jazz masters Mark Lewis and David Friesen have recorded more than 100 albums between them, including two together (one on the Audio Daddio label, one on the Quartet label). The single “Alone Together” was recorded live at The Fremont in Seattle WA in December 2017.

This recording is rare for a number of reasons:

-It’s the first recording released of Mark Lewis on baritone saxophone, he’s most often heard on alto -David Friesen plays his own original music on recordings and in concert, almost never jazz standards -Mark Lewis typically records his own original music (more than 1,700 songs composed to date) -“Alone Together” is from the only night that was recorded at The Fremont during a six-month jazz series in a trendy neighborhood. - the club has since closed , a casualty of rising Seattle rents -The recording demonstrates master musicians improvising with what some might call unusual instrumentation – just baritone sax and bass -The performance combines an exquisite mix of technique, creativity and emotion – hallmarks of these musicians

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