This morning as I was looking down the list of jazz musicians born on October 12th, the day remembered by all the indigenous people of the Americas as the day all hell broke loose and us as Columbus day, I stopped very early in the list, actually at the third name right after Chris Botti -Dave Robinson It was a name I recognized, but only as a Hall of Fame football player with the Packers, not as a vibraphonist. But I thought, hey, let’s discovery something new this Saturday morning and I did!! At AllMusic I read:
A percussionist from the age of 12, Dave has moved through pop, rock, classical and a host of theatre pits across the north of England. He worked with legendary Boogie-Woogie Pianist Bob Hall and made several jazz recordings with groups from the area. Since moving to Dover, Dave joined the progressive rock band Testing The Water, whose debut CD received regular air play and even record of the week on one New Zealand radio station! He has recorded with Madrohne, blending traditional and modern music and has released a total of 4 jazz CD’s in collaboration with Saxman Dave Corsby.
That sounded fairly interesting….I read on…
….He joined two other Dover musicians to form the innovative Zen Bicycle Band who have released two albums ‘Zen Bicycle’ in 2008 and ‘Essence’ in 2011…. His interest in blending traditional and electronic music fits into the ethos of the Zen Bicycle Band, creating the pulse and ambient foundation that is one of the trademarks of the music. Read All
Now that sounded interesting with a name like that how can I go wrong!!! A quick trip to MOG and I discovered two albums by Zen Bicycle Band (ZBB) one of which In Your Head was released in 2013. A quick listen to the first track, confirmed my suspicion that they are a band whose music I would like!! On to YouTube and a few snippets of their videos and it was on to their website At their website I went to The Band
ZBB started out as an idea of Clive’s to record an album of free improvisation. No pre-planning, no discussion beforehand. 2 days in the studio and they had enough music to edit into a CD. Was it any good? The band liked it, but they weren’t sure what everyone else would think. Gigging the music was going to be even more difficult, because it would definitely not sound like the album – and with a name like Zen Bicycle Band, there were many in the jazz world who were very unsure that they would like it A gig at the Harbour Jazz Club and one at the Louis Armstrong followed and the audience response was fantastic. CD’s sold well and even die-hard jazz fans enjoyed the experience. But of course, ZBB is not a jazz band. In fact, it is difficult to know what it is. ….The band were approached at a recent gig in Chatham by a member of the audience who had spent the last 40 years collecting free and improvised music. His view “I’ve never heard anythjing like it” The band continue to develop their music through the concept of ‘creating in concert’ Full Bio
What is it, cool, strange and different music, I like it!! On to Facebook Where I found, The Zen Bicycle Band are Paul Cheneour – all the flutes, Dave Robinson – Eigenharp and percussion, and Clive Fletcher – all the basses. So check them out!! As for me I’m off to find more out about the Malletkat!! Oh, by the way Happy 52nd Birthday, Dave Robinson, the vibraphonist!!. Here’s a video of a performance of the band Live at The Deal Hoy – 7th November 2012.