Posts Tagged ‘ Noah Preminger ’

Noah Preminger interviewed by Woodrow Wilkins

On the heels of back-to-back releases rooted in the blues of the Mississippi Delta, Pivot – Live at the 55 Bar,” and “”Dark Was the Night, Cold Was the Ground,” saxophonist Noah Preminger makes a different kind of statement. “Meditations on Freedom” is part reaction to the 2016 election of a billionaire who had no political experience, a limited attention span and a knack for stirring the emotions of people who are fearful, angry or prejudiced against one or more ethnic groups. It’s also a call for those who believe in freedom, democracy and progress over regress to keep going, not give up.

Preminger spent a few minutes talking about the project.

WW: Interesting statement you’re making with this new recording. Tell us when the idea started to take shape. What had just happened and what were your immediate thoughts?

NP: I’d been talking to Jimmy Katz one day, and we talk most days. The amazing engineer, photographer and a great friend of mine. And we spoke often about politics, and he said, “One day, I think you should make sort of a protest album.” It was right when Trump was elected. Two weeks after that we already had a recording date.

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Noah Preminger – Dark Was the Night, Cold Was the Ground

The Mississippi Delta is a powerful force in the music of Noah Preminger. He again taps into the culture that gave birth to America’s music with Dark Was the Night, Cold Was the Ground (2016).

Noah plays saxophone. On this date, he’s accompanied by Jason Palmer, trumpet; Kim Cass, bass; and Ian Froman, drums.

Trumpet and sax trade licks over a riveting bass line to begin “Hard Times Killin’ Floor Blues.” This Skip James composition takes on different modes. While the horns wail like so many field workers trying to survive an agonizing day picking cotton, the bass drives along. Then, the quartet takes off on a high-speed jaunt with Preminger and Palmer exchanging lines in an intense dialogue. Cass and Froman cut loose underneath. After a frantic middle, the horns step back while Froman stretches out. Then it reverts to the beginning mode.

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Noah Preminger – Pivot: Live at the 55 Bar

In a time when many artists are releasing cookie-cutter music, albums wherein each song clocks in at a radio-friendly four minutes, it’s refreshing when a musician steps outside the box. Saxophonist Noah Preminger does that in a big way with Pivot: Live at the 55 Bar (2015). The album has just two songs, each more than 30 minutes long.

Preminger plays tenor. He’s accompanied by Jason Palmer, trumpet; Kim Cass, bass; and Ian Froman, drums.

The songs were recorded “in the heat of the moment” at a Greenwich Village nightspot. Preminger explores his age-old obsession with Mississippi Delta blues. Both songs are culled from one of Preminger’s favorite sings, the late Booker T. “Bukka” White.

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Noah Preminger – Haymaker

Free expression. That’s the signature of Haymaker (Palmetto Records, 2013) by tenor saxophonist Noah Preminger. It’s a set of 10 songs, seven composed by the artist, one by a member of his band and two covers, including one by one of his musical inspirations, Dave Matthews Group.

With Preminger are guitarist Ben Monder, bassist Matt Pavolka and drummer Colin Stranahan.

“Morgantown,” named for a town in West Virginia, opens the set. Preminger’s lead is punctuated sharply by Stranahan’s timely beats. The song takes on the air of a leisurely romp through the city. Monder’s subtle guitar play at times sounds more like the chords of an electric piano. The drum solo evokes an image of town residents pausing in the park to watch a street musician play for the sheer joy of playing.

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