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Dirty Dozen bring Marvin Gaye alive in Glenwood

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GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado – New Orleans jazz legends the Dirty Dozen Brass Band bring their globe-trotting summer tour to the Glenwood Springs Summer of Jazz tonight.

The band’s first Glenwood Springs appearance since 1996 is also an encore of sorts to the local jazz series’ post-Hurricane Katrina tribute to the music and musicians of the Big Easy.

The Dirty Dozen Brass Band, led by co-founders Gregory Davis (trumpet/vocals), Roger Lewis (baritone and soprano sax), Kevin Harris (tenor sax) and Efrem Towns (trumpet, flugelhorn), is fresh off a series of festival performances earlier this month in Spain and Italy. The current tour has also taken them to the RockNess Festival in Inverness, Scotland, and a series of festivals in Canada, before returning to the United States.



Following the devastation of Hurricane Katrina in 2005, in which some of the band members lost homes and precious personal memories, the Dirty Dozen Brass Band embarked on a project to translate the songs from Marvin Gaye’s classic 1971 album, “What’s Going On?” Their own album by the same title was release on Aug. 29, 2006, on the one-year anniversary of Katrina’s devastation of New Orleans and the greater Gulf Coast region.

“It just made sense in light of all that happened with the storm,” Davis says of the project in an article on the band’s website, dirtydozenbrass.com. “But even beyond that, to ask ‘What’s going on?’ in the world makes sense. What happened with 9/11, what happened with the tsunami, what happened with the earthquakes over in Iraq and Afghanistan. … What’s really going on?”



“The Dirty Dozen has never been afraid of mixing intriguing approaches to traditional and familiar material, but in a context emphasizing challenging original music composed by the Dozen members themselves,” the band’s website continues. “In the course, the band resurrected, revitalized and put distinctly personal stamps on what was a dying tradition of New Orleans brass bands when the group formed in the late ’70s, inspiring a full-on revival that’s flourished with several new generations of young brass bands each bringing their own twists to the form.”

There will be a discussion about the Dirty Dozen Brass Band and its music led by local jazz aficionado Wick Moses at the weekly preconcert class that is a part of this summer’s concert series. The class takes place from noon to 1 p.m. today at the Colorado Mountain College Glenwood Center on Blake Avenue. The drop-in fee is $8.

jstroud@postindependent.com


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