PDXV - November 14 and 30, 2006
The Old Church
In the mood for a musical adventure? Longing to wander off your well beaten jazz path through familiar standards into new, uncharted territory? PDXV (pronounced, "P-D-X VEE"; the "V" is a Roman numeral 5, as this is a quintet) may provide the change of auditory scenery you have been longing for. My ears thanked me for attending PDXV's 11/14/06 and 11/30/06 concerts at the Old Church, and I'm already planning my next outing to hear this refreshing, talented ensemble.
The Old Church, a stately wooden Gothic style church built in 1833, sits at the corner of SW 11th and Clay in downtown Portland. No longer serving a congregation, the church now enjoys a new life as an elegant venue for concerts, weddings, and other events. You can refer to the events tab on their website (http://www.oldchurch.org/) for concert information. Jazz concerts are featured regularly. This unique venue is free of smoke, tables of talkers, blender noise from the bar, and other distractions. Minors are welcome in this venue.
Trumpeter Dick Titterington leads PDXV, an exciting ensemble of five of Portland's most creative and sophisticated players: Greg Goebel, piano; Dave Captein, bass; Todd Strait, drums; Rob Davis, tenor and soprano saxophones, and Dick Titterington, trumpet and flugelhorn. Each musician is profiled on the group's website at www.pdxv.com where you can also find out where and when you can next hear PDXV.
PDXV explores lesser known instrumental jazz repertoire from the late 1950's and beyond. Vocal standards from Broadway shows and better known instrumentals are not on the set list. This ensemble devotes itself to material that is new and unfamiliar to most of the audience, and that material is performed by musicians who have the chops and understanding of the music, to play it accessibly and beautifully. PDXV never forgets the audience in the process. Titterington, your guide as you listen, introduces each tune by providing adequate background. There are no drawn out, self-indulgent solos, but instead just the right amount of improvising. Some of the "heads" are very unpredictable, and defy you to hum them at the end of the evening. Titterington picks challenging material for the musician and listener, featuring unexpected melodies and improvisations that take your ears and spirit to vistas worthy of exploration.
Samples of the repertoire include Step Right On Up To The Bottom by West Coast writer Harold Land; Why Wait? by Stanley Clark; and tunes by Steve Swallow, Hank Mobley, and not surprisingly, material written by trumpet players. PDXV performs at least two compositions by a French trumpeter favorite of Dick's, Nicolas Folmer. Other featured tunes by trumpeters include Nic at Night by Nicolas Peyton; Sky Dive by Freddie Hubbard; Journey to the Center and Train Shuffle by Tom Harrell, and tunes by mainstay writers Lee Morgan and Kenny Dorham. The group also features an unusual blues in 5/4 time written by pianist Greg Goebel.
PDXV deserves to be performing regularly in Portland for a long time to come. Be sure to support them by getting out to hear them at your earliest opportunity. If you enjoy exposing your ears to new music played by masterful musicians, PDXV will not disappoint you.