Skip to Main Content

Rabble Without A Cause
Wednesday April 17th, 2013 with Bernard Stepien
Carla Bley’s Big Band Theory

While it is a well known fact that the big band era came to an end during the early `60s, Carla Bley`s 10 piece band is one of the few exception to the rule. In fact, she has been leading an over successful band since the `80s and even got commissioned to compose major works for major Jazz festivals across Europe. The recipe for such a success was both simple and beyond expectations: a Fusion between any music (Jazz or Pop) and Free Jazz, all with a good string of fairies over the cradle. Jimmy Giuffre was one of the first musicians who played her compositions. She was soon able to join Bill Dixon`s Jazz Composers Guild in the `60s and of course quickly click in the European scene after meeting Peter Brötzmann. But compared to many avant-garde musicians who were appreciated mostly in Europe of Japan around that time, Carla quickly enjoyed fame in America starting with composing for pianist Keith Jarrett in 1974. Finally she compromised by creating the Europamerican Big Band in 1985. Tonight we will sample her 1993 release Big Band Theory where the influences of Gil Evans and Charlie Mingus can be easily uncovered.
on the stage in cages
Carla Bley - big band theory - WATT Works
godbye pork pie hat
Carla Bley - big band theory - WATT Works
birds of paradise
Carla Bley - big band theory - WATT Works