March 18, 1999: Capilano College faculty member wins Juno award
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 18, 1999
Contact: Shelley Kean
Community Relations Advisor
(NORTH VANCOUVER)--"Not acid jazz, but definitely not just jazz! Metalwood is high energy jazz with driving grooves and world-class improvisation." -- Victoria Jazz Society
Metalwood was awarded a Juno Award for best contemporary jazz album on March 7, 1999 at Copps Coliseum in Hamilton Ontario. The award, the band's second consecutive Juno in this category, was for its CD "Metalwood 2" on the Maximum Jazz label. The band is comprised of Brad Turner, Mike Murley, Ian Froman, and Chris Tarry. Brad is director of the Capilano College A band and also teaches trumpet in the College's Jazz Studies program.
Metalwood is like the honours class for young, innovative jazz players: Mike Murley on the saxophone, Brad Turner playing trumpet and keyboards, drummer Ian Froman, and Chris Tarry on the bass. And although Ian lives in New York and Mike has to fly from Toronto to meet the other two Vancouver players, they still consider themselves a (non-swing) band in full swing, with one of the most capable and adventurous sounds in groove jazz this side of the 49th parallel.
What was once termed fusion is enjoying a small resurgence, but most of today' groove-orientated jazz bands deliver only a watered-down version of sounds first made popular in the '60s or '70s. They lack the willingness - or the ability - to improvise. That's what made early fusion bands such as Weather Report, the Tony Williams Lifetime, and Brand X so exciting. Newer bands show little ambition beyond a desire to get folks up onto the dance floor. Metalwood, on the other hand, combines impressive chops with equally serious compositional skills.
Metalwood describes itself as a funky update with all original material reminiscent of late `60s Miles Davis and "Return to Forever" music, a description borne out by its 1998 Juno award-nominated, self-titled debut album on the Maximum Music label. The sound it was searching for is the sound that it got: playful, groovy, sophisticated, building coherent, sizzling tracks from bare-bones ingredients like a repeating horn riff to fluid, but funky bass and keyboard lines.