This project was conceptualized in early 2006 at the University of South Florida’s “Center for Jazz Composition” by the director Dave Stamps and Chuck Owen. This CD is the outcome of the idea to focus its attention on established composers’ body of work with the purpose of re-examining and re-envisioning the compositions. Owen describes the ultimate goal as "not only to shed new light on the existing work but to serve as a catalyst to stimulate the creation, premier, and publication of related new works as well."
The chosen composer was Michael Brecker who was regarded as influential and remarkable saxophonist in his time, and the period of jazz fusion. Unfortunately, Michael Brecker passed away in early 2007 of a blood disorder, myelodysplastic syndrome. Owen’s team had hoped for Brecker’s presence for the live premier performance of the homage to the spirit of Brecker’s music that was presented with a new mold.
The mold was created from sources that include the selection of an arrangement from a jazz arranging competition. The first track of the CD, “Peep”, is winning arrangement from a total of 80 submissions throughout the world. Another source of the arrangements for the CD was the commissioned work from Michael Brecker's frequent collaborators, Vince Mendoz and Gil Goldstein.
The project was organized in sessions during the spring and fall of 2007. It features notable artists including Michael Brecker’s brother Randy Brecker who plays trumpet, flugehorn plus: Mike Stern, Dave Liebman, Joe Lovano, Mike Maineiri, Adam Nussbaum, Danny Gottlieb, and Rob Thomas. The Jazz Surge was directed by Chuck Owen and the band provided the big band feel to most of the arrangements.
The music is a tangent to the original works because of the big band sound developed around the compositions, but this is the spirit of Michael Brecker’s music: innovation, improvisation and fusion. The CD was released in 2009. The spirit of conceptualizing a new sound to music that is always ripe for re-examination and re-envisioning is captured in the CD aptly titled “The Comet’s Tail: Performing the Compositions of Michael Brecker”.
The track listing: 1. Peep 2. Slings and Arrows 3. Itbynne Reel 4. How Long ‘Til the Sun 5. Sumo 6. The Mean Time 7. Take a Walk 8. Everything Happens When You’re Gone-----ANALYN REVILLA