Artists in Residence: Spring 2015

This semester, we have two exciting Artists in Residence at the Music Department!  We’re hosting Trumpeter and Composer Dave Douglas, and Grammy Award-winning vocalist Lisa Fischer!

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Dave Douglas

In Residence March 9-15, with an additional workshop on February 6th.

Residency Concerts at the Jazz Showcase on March 12, 13 and 14 at 8 PM and 10 PM, and on March 15 at 4 PM and 8 PM.  More information and tickets at DaveDouglasColumbia.eventbrite.com.

About Dave Douglas

Dave Douglas is a prolific trumpeter, composer and educator from New York City.

His unique contributions to improvised music have garnered distinguished recognition, including a Guggenheim Fellowship, an Aaron Copland award and two Grammy nominations. Douglas has developed his work for several unique ensembles with whom he’s currently active, including his new quintet; Keystone, an electric sextet; and, Sound Prints, co-led with saxophonist Joe Lovano.

His new quintet released its debut recording, Be Still, in September 2012 with singer Aoife O’Donovan, the first time Douglas has featured a vocalist on a recording. The album received critical praise, with the New York Times heralding it as “gorgeous and contemplative” and Fred Kaplan in Stereophile proclaiming it “one of the best-sounding new recordings that I’ve heard by anybody in quite a while.” The follow-up recording, Time Travel, was released in April 2013. In it, Troy Collins for AllAboutJazz.com wrote: “the quintet soars…Unconstrained by thematic concerns, Douglas demonstrates his all-encompassing aesthetic, revealing a broad capacity for expressionism.” Together with a new sextet album called Pathways, Be Still and Time Travel were packaged with a DVD of studio performances and music videos as well as unreleased tracks and outtakes and released as part of a commemorative 50th Birthday Recordings box set in September 2013.

Since 2005, Douglas has operated his own record label, Greenleaf Music, releasing his own recordings as well as albums by other artists in the jazz idiom. Through his artist-friendly approach and innovative practices, he continues to prove himself a pioneer among artist-run labels.

Douglas has held several posts as an educator and impresario. From 2002 to 2012, he served as artistic director of the Workshop in Jazz and Creative Music at The Banff Centre in Canada. He is a co-founder and director of the Festival of New Trumpet Music, which celebrated its tenth anniversary in 2012. In 2013, he began his second year as International Jazz Artist in Residence at the Royal Academy of Music in London and launched his own Jazz Workshop, dedicated to enriching the musical experiences of younger players.

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Lisa Fischer
In Residence April 13-17.

Residency Concerts at the Music Department of Columbia College Chicago at 7 PM on Friday April 17th. More information and tickets available at LisaFischer.eventbrite.com

 About Lisa Fischer

Lisa Fischer is a singer who really gets around. Her life is an endless round of planes, trains, and automobiles, rehearsals and fittings. On tour with the Rolling Stones, Sting, Chris Botti or Nine Inch Nails, her name may not be on the marquee, but she doesn’t care. She’s busy loving every minute of it. It’s easy to see why she works all the time: her astonishing range, her spot-on intonation, her mastery of the stage, the way her tone wraps itself around your heart and won’t let go, the infectious quality of her time feel: these things keep her on top of the list. But it’s the sweetness of her smile, her visible pleasure in watching her bandmates do their stuff, her glamorous-girl-next-door quality that make fans all over the world think she’s their own secret discovery (despite the fact that the YouTube version of her duet with Mick Jagger on ‘Gimme Shelter’ has millions of hits).

The rest of her resume is pretty impressive too: touring, recording, and music making with Tina Turner, Chaka Khan, Beyonce, Dionne Warwick, Dolly Parton, Bobby McFerrin, Alicia Keyes, Lou Reed, Louie Vega, Aretha Franklin, John Scofield, George Benson, Laurie Anderson, Lee Ritenour, Jackie Evancho (and many others). Along with many other top session and backup singers like Darlene Love, Merry Clayton, Patti Austin, and Judith Hill, “the greatest artists you’ve never heard of” (but whose voices are instantly recognizable), she’s featured in Morgan Neville’s Oscar-winning 2013 documentary Twenty Feet from Stardom. In the wake of the movie’s critical and popular success, opportunities abound. Lisa’s been recruited for new studio projects including Billy Childs’ long-awaited Laura Nyro tribute. Lisa, Darlene, Merry, and Judith sang the National Anthem at the 2014 Rose Bowl. And Lisa’s putting together a brand new band to explore some uncharted territory. She’s on to a new leg of the journey, destination unknown.

When Lisa Fischer won her Grammy for Best Female R&B Performance for her hit single “How Can I Ease the Pain,” in an unlikely tie with Patti LaBelle, she almost missed the chance to take the stage and accept her award. Thrilled and amazed to get the nomination, Lisa heard Patti LaBelle’s name announced and started clapping so hard that she didn’t hear her own name called. Onstage, the two singers hugged and swayed together, caught up in the moment. Because Lisa Fischer didn’t just win a Grammy for her first solo single; she was also one of the backup singers on Ms. LaBelle’s award-winning song ‘Burnin.’

The first person Lisa thanked onstage that night was Luther Vandross. Lisa was a Marvellete when she first auditioned for Luther, who was to become her employer, her mentor, and her champion. She is honored to carry on his legacy, striving for excellence, taking care of business, getting up early, staying up late, showing up on time, letting the music take control, singing her heart out, night after night.

Recent Chicago Recording Session

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