"...what modern free jazz could sound like while still [being] entirely listenable..."
- Adam Greenberg, Allmusic.com
Little Played Little Bird is drummer/bandleader Todd Bishop's new CD of rarely-performed tunes by free jazz master Ornette Coleman, to be released on Seattle's Origin Records in April, 2012. The album includes highly original, listenable interpretations of seldom-performed tunes from the later 1960's through the '80's, including classic Coleman quartet swingers Check Up and Enfant, the funky Feet Music, Country Town Blues and Friends and Neighbors, the spacey Mothers of the Veil and Strange As It Seems, the free-jazz anthem Comme Il Faut, as well as one of Coleman's most famous compositions, Lonely Woman.
The recording features Latin Grammy-nominated pianist Weber Iago, Seattle saxophonist Rich Cole (Dr. John, Randy Brecker, Gladys Knight, et al), as well as long-time musical partners saxophonist Tim Willcox and bassist Bill Athens, both of Portland.
Now booking November 2012 tour of western Europe, featuring Weber Iago.
Inquire below regarding bookings/tour schedule.
Visit the Todd Bishop news blog for updates, reviews, and radio play.
All compositions by Ornette Coleman.
Richard D. Cole – soprano, tenor, bari saxophones, bass clarinet
Tim Willcox – soprano, tenor, alto saxophones
Weber Iago – piano and Wurlitzer
Bill Athens – bass
Todd Bishop – drums
Produced and arranged by Todd Bishop
Recorded and mixed by Bob Stark at Kung Fu Bakery (Portland, OR), November 11 and 23, 2011.
(503)380-9259 - email
Olivier Stalon - email
Performer bio: Todd Bishop
Todd Bishop (b. 1967) has been performing and teaching professionally in Portland, OR, the US west, and internationally since 1985. He has led jazz, avant-garde and indie rock groups and produced six CDs of original music for Seattle's Origin Records and for independent release. With his unique multi-layered, organic percussive approach, he is a compelling musician, and has thrilled audiences with visceral performances owing as much to the influence of Olatunji or Keith Moon as to the great jazz masters.
He released two CDs with the jazz power trio Flatland. The Satellite is a largely groove-based album with early Bishop arrangements of two Don Cherry tunes, and produced by Tony Lash (Elliot Smith, Dandy Warhols). The second CD, Origin of Species, bore Bishop's stamp as producer and arranger, highlights including several dark, cinematic soundscape pieces, and "Malheur", a propulsive drum solo. The group was a significant regional presence from 1998-2002, and shared bills with such acts as Galactic, Charlie Hunter, Wayne Horvitz, and Herbie Hancock's Headhunters.
Next came the ambient, delicately-textured free improvisations of Lower Monumental, which released Mayday Session, a live broadcast performance on Seattle's venerable Sonarchy Radio. Features a spontaneously-rendered Bishop composition, "Headlights."
The movie-music/international pop-oriented Pop Art 4 is Bishop's most ambitious project to date. The group released 69 Année Érotique - the music of Serge Gainsbourg- in 2009, and made European tours in 2009 and 2010, with several additional CD currently in development, including free interpretations of the music of Akira Kurosawa's Yojimbo, Lalo Schifrin's Dirty Harry soundtrack, and Candy, an album of original music.
Bishop is also the author of the jazz drumming blog Cruise Ship Drummer!!, one of the leading blogs on the subject.
Bishop studied classical percussion with Charles Dowd at the University of Oregon, and, under scholarship, jazz studies with Gregg Field (Count Basie) and John Thomas (Woody Herman, Chick Corea) at the University of Southern California. He also completed six national tours with DCI-affilliated drum and bugle corps, including the famous1986 Santa Clara Vanguard, which finished second nationally that year. He was instructed by drum corps greats Ralph Hardimon, George Tuthill, and Fred Sanford, as well as marching specialist Alan Keown.
Also accomplished in visual media, he is a prolific photographer of Pacific NW musicians, has returned several times to Italy to photograph the city of Rome, and is one of the major providers of photographic imagery for Origin Arts. As a painter, Bishop creates richly textured abstract landscapes echoing Oregon farm country and wilderness in oils. He is represented by the Provenance gallery (Eugene, OR), and his work has been collected by buyers on four continents. He is also the creator of the Skulli and My Sweet Fiend character designs, which are currently selling well under license in several large chains in North America and Japan.