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Find out information about the Improvised Roots Series I'm presenting in conjunction with Dazzle Jazz Club here!!




Next Improvised Roots shows will be held on January 13 and 14 at Dazzle in Denver, CO.  Dave Douglas on trumpet, Aoife O'Donovan on vocals, Matt Flinner on mandolin and banjo, John Gunther on reeds, and myself on bass...


(DENVER, CO, November 13, 2011)- Denver bassist Greg Garrison, in association with Dazzle Jazz Club (, will present the second installment of his “Improvised Roots Series” on January 13 and 14, 2012 at Dazzle.  The series is designed to showcase nationally known artists from the folk/bluegrass and jazz worlds performing together with some of Denver’s finest open-minded improvisers.  To follow up the sold out first concerts that featured guitarists Bill Frisell and Bryan Sutton, Garrison has assembled an impressive group of musicians for what promise to be two unforgettable evenings of music: trumpet player and composer extraordinaire Dave Douglas, influential singer/songwriter Aoife O’Donovan, and multi-instrumentalists Matt Flinner (mandolin, banjo, guitar) and John Gunther (reeds).

Dave Douglas is arguably the most prolific and original trumpeter-composer of his generation.  Since 1993, he has released more than 30 recordings and created a composition catalogue that exceeds 400. His unique contributions to improvised music have garnered distinguished recognition some of which includes a Guggenheim Fellowship, Aaron Copland award, Grammy-nominations, trumpeter, composer, and jazz artist of the year by such organizations as the New York Jazz Awards, Down Beat, Jazz Times, Jazziz, and the Italian Jazz Critics’ Society and —most recently a recipient of the Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation’s Jazz.NEXT grant. Douglas has developed his work for several unique ensembles with whom he’s currently active: the Dave Douglas Quintet, Keystone, Brass Ecstasy, and beginning in 2011, Tea For 3, a trio of trumpeters backed by an acoustic rhythm section.  Since 2005, Douglas has operated his own record label, Greenleaf Music, releasing his own recordings, albums by other artists in the jazz idiom, and continues to prove himself as a forward-thinking leader in the realm of digital music distribution.  He is in his 8th season serving as the artistic director of the Workshop in Jazz and Creative Music at The Banff Centre in Canada and is co-founder and director of the Festival of New Trumpet Music, which celebrates its ninth anniversary in 2011.

When USA Today predicted that Aoife O’Donovan would soon become “the newest darling of the Americana set”, it had already been true for quite some time.  Aoife is renowned for her ability to breathe magic into anything she sings.  Aoife (pronounced EEF-ah) grew up in a musical family, immersed in folk music.  She went on to study contemporary improvisation at the New England Conservatory of Music in her hometown of Boston.  Since her first professional engagement singing lead for the folk group The Wayfaring Strangers, she has maintained a wide variety of side projects and collaborations.  Most recently, she has performed and recorded with Yo Yo Ma and Edgar Meyer (The Goat Rodeo Sessions), Ollabelle, Sometymes Why, Karen Casey and Seamus Egan, Jerry Douglas, Jim Lauderdale, Sarah Jarosz, Sara Watkins, Christina Courtin and Chris Thile (Punch Brothers).  For the past 10 years, Aoife has been fronting the alt-bluegrass/string band Crooked Still.  Her natural talent for songwriting recently came to the attention of Alison Krauss, who recorded Aoife’s song Lay My Burden Down, which is included on Alison’s new album Paper Airplane (2011 Rounder Records) and can also be heard in the film Get Low (2010 Sony Pictures).  Aoife has also had her music placed in True Blood on HBO and Private Practice on ABC.

Multi-instrumentalist Matt Flinner has made a career out of playing acoustic music in new ways. Starting out as a banjo prodigy who was playing bluegrass festivals before he entered his teens, Flinner later took up the mandolin, won the National Banjo Contest at Winfield Kansas in 1990, and took the mandolin award there the following year.  Since then, he has become recognized as one of the premiere mandolinists and new acoustic/roots music composers today.  He has toured and recorded with a wide variety of artists including Tim O’Brien, Frank Vignola, Steve Martin, Darrell Scott, the Modern Mandolin Quartet, Leftover Salmon, Alison Brown, The Ying Quartet, Tony Trischka, Darol Anger, and the Nashville Chamber Orchestra.  His two solo CDs (also on Compass), “The View from Here” and “Latitude,” are now widely considered classics in the new acoustic/modern bluegrass style and feature such stalwarts as David Grier, Stuart Duncan, Todd Phillips, Tim O’Brien, Jerry Douglas and Darol Anger.  His current group, the Matt Flinner Trio (with guitarist Ross Martin and bassist Eric Thorin), has forged new pathways in acoustic string band music.




(DENVER, CO, June 1, 2011)- Denver bassist Greg Garrison, in association with trumpet luminary Ron Miles and Dazzle Jazz Club (, has created a new concert series called the “Improvised Roots Series”, which kicks off on July 16 and 17, 2011 at Dazzle.  The series is designed to feature nationally known artists from the folk/bluegrass and jazz worlds performing together with some of Denver’s finest open-minded improvisers.  The first concerts feature a unique pairing of two Grammy winning guitarists performing alongside Garrison and Miles: Bill Frisell and Bryan Sutton.  Garrison says, “I think the music we’ll play will wind up being a really interesting cross section of American styles.  Some bluegrass and folk tunes, some original compositions, and who knows what else.  I’ve worked with Bryan a bunch with Chris Thile and on a couple of his own things, and Frisell and Ron are two of my biggest musical heroes, so I couldn’t be more excited about what’s going to happen on those two nights!” 

Sponsored by KGNU.  Tickets are $26, available here.  Shows at 7 and 9 pm on 7/16 and 6 and 8 pm on 7/17.  These shows should sell out, so get your tickets soon!!