Tis the Season: Perry Robinson returns!

Perry Robinson with Battle Hymns & Gardens
Monday, December 17, 8 pm (doors 7:30 pm)
Backspace (115 NW Fifth Avenue, Portland)
$5-15 sliding | All ages

The ebullient and talented jazz/avant-garde clarinetist Perry Robinson plays Monday, December 17 at Backspace (115 Northwest 5th Avenue in bustling Old Town Portland) with drummer Tim DuRoche, bassist André St James and Seattle trombone great Marc Smason —sharing the bill with Battle Hymns & Gardens

Perry Robinson (clarinet)
The son of Earl Robinson, famed songwriter and compadre of Pete Seeger, Leadbelly and Woody Guthrie, who wrote ”The House I Live In,” “Joe Hill,” young Perry Robinson grew up surrounded by music of all shapes and sizes. Growing up in New York during the 1950s, he was exposed to a rich array of jazz, including the music of Tony Scott, who would become an early influence. Awarded a scholarship to the radical Lenox School of Jazz, Perry soon found himself in the orbit of Ornette Coleman and Don Cherry, George Russell, Herb Pomeroy, Bill Evans, Max Roach, Kenny Dorham as well as the entire Modern Jazz Quartet.

Perry recorded his first album as a leader in 1962 in Newark for Savoy Records with a very young Kenny Barron on piano, bassist Henry Grimes, and Bill Evans Trio drummer Paul Motian. He recorded with Grimes again in 1965 for the ESP label in a trio setting. Later forming important alliances with New Thing musicians, Perry worked with Bill Dixon, recorded with Archie Shepp on his 1966 album Mama Too Tight and worked with the Jazz Composers Orchestra in the early 1970s and participated in the Liberation Music Orchestra, led by bassist Charlie Haden. Throughout the 1970s, Perry worked with German multi-instrumentalist Gunter Hampel, along with vocalist Jeanne Lee,  drummer  Steve McCall and wind players Mark Whitecage and Thomas Keyserling. Since then, Perry has been leading his own groups as well as appearing on recordings of Clarinet Summit with Alvin Batiste, John Carter, with William Parker, and with pianist Anat Fort, among others.


Battle Hymns and Gardens is a collective ensemble featuring Reed Wallsmith (alto saxophone) and Joe Cunningham (tenor saxophone, penny whisle), bassist Jon Shaw, and drummer Tim DuRoche.  Originally formed in 2007 as a free improvisation ensemble, BHaG have evolved into one of the most compelling units on the Portland scene, balancing spacious, lyrical composition with a healthy dose of deeply conversational harmelodic interplay and accessible frenzy. Battle Hymns & Gardens have appeared as part of the 2012 Portland Jazz Festival, the 2012 PDX Pop Now fest, individually as part of the Creative Music Guild’s Improvisation Summit of Portland. They will release their debut album this coming winter.

“Some of [Portland’s] most creative musicians. . .some of the city’s most intriguing far out jazz.”  —WILLAMETTE WEEK