The violin’s potential as a vehicle for jazz expression was overlooked for decades, but a handful of intrepid musicians have made the instrument an essential part of the 21st century soundscape.
In the San Francisco String Trio powerhouse East Bay violinist Mads Tolling has found equally formidable improvisers in guitar star Mimi Fox and bassist/vocalist Jeff Denson, dean of instruction as the California Jazz Conservatory. The collective can transform just about any kind of tune into a combustible situation, like on the trio’s 2017 debut album May I Introduce To You, a jazz tribute to the Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s — music they revisit for this performance.
Sharing the double bill is the quintet House of Faern with violinist Jenny Scheinman, who’s released nine albums of her own and collaborated extensively with Bill Frisell, Jason Moran, Nels Cline and Allison Miller. Featuring alto saxophonist Beth Schenck, guitarist Matt Wrobel, pianist John Wood, and GRAMMY-winning bassist Todd Sickafoose, House of Faern focuses on original compositions inspired by glorious outdoor settings evoked by improvisation-laced sojourns that melt distinctions between folk, jazz and classical music.
Mads Tolling- Violinist; Mimi Fox-Guitarist; Jeff Denson- Bassist/Vocalist; Jenny Scheinman- Violinist; Beth Schenck- ; Matt Wrobel- Guitarist; John Wood- Pianist; Todd Sickafoose- Bassist