Moving Forward Standing Still
Inspired by Stravinsky, Bartók, Ives, and other contemporary classical composers, flutist/composer Jamie Baum and six spirited improvisors create lush, distinctive, swirling musical landscapes filled with contrast and adventure.
The you in "All Roads Lead to You" is Igor Stravinsky, one of several contemporary classical composers who've influenced the music on Moving Forward. There are multiple overlapping and dovetailing lines, meters, timbres, tempos, and energies inspired by the piece she rediscovered while working on her graduate degree at the Manhattan School of Music.
The piece contains also, by the way, one motif Jamie reworked from the Rite of Spring, and a phrase later in the piece apparently quoted from John Coltrane's "Naima" was purely coincidental, a factor of how great music creeps into the collective musical conscious (and unconscious).
Phrases from one of Bela Bartók's string quartets are quoted in (yes, you guessed it) "Bar Talk," and Stavinsky's Rite remerges in "Spring," the first piece Jamie wrote for the Septet, a configuration she settled on artistically for its flexibility of size, the openness of its uncommon instrumentation, and the challenge of making a small group sound big. From a practical standpoint, she chose septet because it is large enough to give her a variety of voices to work with without being as big of a "money pit" as a larger ensemble. Adds Jamie, "I couldn't imagine what a big band would cost."
Also, as a flutist, she's spent quite a bit of time over the years in smaller chamber-type ensembles playing classical music, new music, Brazilian music, and Latin music. Originally from Connecticut, now living in New York City, Jamie works performing, composing, recording, and holding clinics. She has toured extensively in the US, Europe, Japan, South America and South Asia, performing at festivals, clubs, and concert halls with her own ensembles and well as with luminaries ranging from Kenny Werner, Tom Harrell, Fred Hersch, and Randy Brecker to Dave Douglas, Paul Motian, and George Russell.
A winner of several Down Beat Critics' and Readers' Polls and a recipient of several grants and awards, Jamie has participated in US State Department/Kennedy Center Jazz Ambassador Program, touring extensively in South America, India, and South Asia. She's active both as a private teacher at home and at the New School and as a clinician nationally and internationally.
Jamie received a Bachelor of Music degree from The New England Conservatory and a Master's Degree from the Manhattan School of Music in jazz composition. She studied flute with Ransom Wilson, Robert Stallman, Hubert Laws and Keith Underwood; jazz improvisation with Richie Bierach, Dave Liebman, Jaki Byard, and Charlie Banacos and composition with Richard DeRosa, WT McKinnley, and Ludmilla Ulehla.
With such a wide and thorough training as an instrumentalist, improviser, and composer, it's not surprising that influences of the various musics she's played and of various 20th century classical composers became a sort of theme for Moving Forward.
Many pieces are conceptually as well as literally inspired. For example, an actual walk through the park inspired Jamie to base "Central Park" on the concept behind Charles Ives' orchestral piece "Central Park in the Dark," an atmospheric depiction of the varied and overlapping sounds one hears while taking a stroll through the New York landmark.
(4 stars)  "...composing and arranging skills shine forth ... an uncanny aggregation of looseness, and perfection." --—Down Beat
(4 stars)  "[A] sense of musical freedom, an unwillingness to limit herself simply to staid through-composed pieces, post-bop jazz classicism, or free improv experimentalism, but to mix and match the elements that suit her needs on a piece-by-piece basis, is what sets Baum apart from many of her peers, and what makes Moving Forward, Standing Still an immensely satisfying, exciting listen." --AllMusic.com
"...an exquisite affirmation of Baum's compositional genius, with arrangements that progress seamlessly from one arresting dynamic to another, and solos arising from an undulating fabric of sound. It's not the kind of music you'll ever hear on the radio, but its brilliance is utterly accessible and so aesthetically rewarding that comparing it to the parade of market-wise blowing session and conceptual contrivances out there is useless." --The Gazette (Croton, CT)
- Language : English
- Product Dimensions : 5 x 5.75 x 0.5 inches; 3.46 Ounces
- Manufacturer : Omnitone Records
- SPARS Code : DDD
- Date First Available : February 10, 2007
- Label : Omnitone Records
- ASIN : B0002B25DM
- Number of discs : 1
- Best Sellers Rank: #752,403 in CDs & Vinyl (See Top 100 in CDs & Vinyl)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from other countries
All but one of the compositions are by Baum.
The music is thoughtful and quite complex – as I've come to expect from Baum`s other albums; this one declares the influences of Bartók, Stravinsky and Ives – though the opening track is pervaded by the influence of Coltrane.
It's a fairly challenging listen, but there's plenty of rhythmic interest and the individual contributions of the musicians involved are certainly very good – it's committed music asking some commitment from the listener, but rewarding and worth several plays in order to fully appreciate it.
Overall, I enjoyed the music – it's a good album and Baum is an interesting composer.
The CD has a playing time of 63.03 minutes.
Amazon have now stopped providing sound samples – a stupid and extremely inconvenient move for all prospective purchasers – I suggest searching YouTube or another music website for tracks from the album.