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The ultimate jazz quartet is coming to New Zealand


The ultimate jazz quartet is coming to New Zealand.

While the four stellar musicians have never played together as a group, jazz impresario, Rodger Fox, has enticed them to New Zealand for a series of six concerts including the Opera House, Wellington, early next month.

The musicians are a who’s who of American based musicians and sing and play instruments that collectively could make them the most sought-after jazz combo.

They’re headed by Dave Weckl “one of the 25 best drummers of all time” and Grammy award winning, lead vocalist for Santana, Tony Lindsay. The other two are Adam Shroeder, recognised by Down Beat magazine as the “rising star” on the baritone saxophone and trumpeter, Alex Sipiagin, who won top honours at the International Louis Armstrong competition.

Individually they’re top of their profession but together, when they play with the Rodger Fox Big Band, they’ll provide an experience rarely heard in New Zealand or anywhere in the world.

“The four of them will add a new dimension and expose their audience to different styles of jazz and a different level of mastery,” Rodger Fox says.

The Jazz Gala, featuring the Rodger Fox Big Band and the four legendary performers, performs at the Opera House, Wellington on June 8.

The drums have been beating for Dave Weckl since Rodger announced the line-up in December.

Weckl has been inducted into Modern Drummer’s Hall Of Fame and has performed with the Chick Corea Electric Band, Mike Stern Trio and has featured with such artists as Paul Simon, Madonna, George Benson, Robert Plant and the GRP All-star Big Band.

While in New Zealand Weckl will hold drum workshops and a masterclass in four of the six venues.

Tony Lindsay, who was lead vocalist with Santana for 20 years, has travelled with them on several world tours and recorded seven CDs with them.

Rodger describes him as a “distinctive black American singer with a voice that oozes an effortless, silky sound.” Tony’s repertoire extends from Frank Sinatra to soul classics and his original pop and rhythm and blues sound.

“He’ll sing a cross-section of music from Sinatra and Sammy Davis Jnr to Bill Withers and Stevie Wonder, accompanied by the big band,” Rodger says. “However we’re also creating the opportunity when all four come together on stage and that will be a magical moment.”

“To get them here is a major coup and couldn’t succeed without.three festivals running concurrently.”

Proceeds from the Jazz Gala series will go towards helping to get the Rodger Fox Big Band to the 60th Monterey Jazz Festival in September.

Jazz Gala, featuring four US jazz legends and the Rodger Fox Big Band performs at the Opera House, Wellington on June 8.

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