Jazz@First: Finger-Popping: The Music of Horace Silver, featuring Mike Wade and Brent Gallaher
Sunday, January 28, 2018 @ 2pm | First Unitarian Church

Pianist/composer Horace Silver pioneered the “hard-bop” style of jazz in the 1950s, creating great melodies and arrangements that are soulful, harmonically beautiful and frequently funky. Two of Cincinnati’s best jazz soloists – saxophonist Brent Gallaher and trumpeter Mike Wade – will bring flair and personality to this joyful music.

Jazz@First Series Sponsor: Al Harris

Mike Wade, trumpet

During his career Mike Wadehas been named one of the top ten unsigned jazz, brass players as rated by Jazziz Magazine (1997). His composition, “Blues for Shorty Bop”, was chosen for inclusion on Jazziz on Disc collection. He has performed and/or recorded with such artists as David “Fathead” Newman, Clark Terry, Javon Jackson, Bobby Watson, Gary Bartz, Mulgrew Miller, Rene Marie, Don Braden, Steve Wilson, Othello Molineaux, Vincent Herring, Jon Hendricks, Annie Ross, Winard & Phillip Harper, Antoine Roney, Herb Jeffries, Craig Bailey, Billy Hart, Marc Cary, Bill Lee, Ricky Wellman, Bootsy Collins, Reggie Calloway, Teddy Pendergrass, The O’Jays, Maurice, Freddie, and Verdine White (Earth, Wind and Fire), Tom Tom 84, and Experience Unlimited (E.U.). He has performed on Black Entertainment Television (BET) Jazz Discovery show, and WOSU Jazz Voices television series. With either his quartet or quintet he has performed at the Cincinnati Entertainment Awards show (2000), Cincinnati Cammy Awards show (1997), the Columbus Jazz and Rib Fest, the Charleston Jazz Festival, and the Frog Island Festival. Mike’s quintet, Standard Time, was the 1997 winner of the Cincinnati Cammy award for Best Small Jazz Group. With the Mike Wade Reality Band he has opened (2003) for the smooth jazz group BWB (Rick Braun, Kirk Whalum, Norman Brown). With the Famous American Trumpet Section (F.A.T.S.) he performed at the International Trumpet Guild Conference in Denver, CO (2004). With the Mike Wade Sextet he has opened (2005) for the renowned San Francisco Jazz Collective.

Mike has contributed his talent to the recordings of William Menefield-Big Will Leaps In (JCurve Records), Art Gore Quintet-Artwork, Cohesion Jazz Ensemble-A Journey’s Quest, Dixie Karas-Never Too Late, Cincinnati Jazz Collection Vol. 1,Vol. 2,and Vol. 3 Roots & Blues (J-Curve Records), and WVXU Christmas CD-X Star Jazz Christmas. His CD with Standard Time, Be Truthful, a disc of original straight ahead jazz compositions, showcases how fiercely he blows his horn and the soul, precision, and excitement of the quintet’s tight performances. His CD Reality is a blend of funky hip-hop, smooth jazz, R&B, and go go, taken from Mike’s D.C. roots. His latest release, The Broach Approach, features new arrangements of straight-ahead standards and original compositions.

Steve Wilson has said of Mike, “Mike Wade has secured his place among the legacy of great trumpeters…people get ready!” Mulgrew Miller has said of Mike, “Mike Wade is a very exciting and creative jazz trumpeter. He is also a very charismatic bandleader. He is dedicated and ambitious. It was a pleasure to play with him”. Craig Bailey has said of Mike, “Mike Wade is one the most inspiring musicians of the new millennium. He has the fire and energy that it takes to be a great leader as well as a great artist. His hustle ability on and off the horn will take him to many new horizons. He is a name not to forget, as well as a trumpet player not to miss.”

Brent Gallaher, tenor saxophone

Brent Gallaher has been a favorite on the Cincinnati jazz scene for more than 25 years. His tonal and melodic conception is reminiscent of the great classic tenor men Wayne Shorter, John Coltrane and Joe Henderson; yet he adds his own personally and modern approach to the instrument.

Brent is a diverse musician. His work as a side man varies from small jazz ensembles, to big bands, to classic pop horn bands, and even the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra.

In the fall of 2016, Brent released his latest album Moving Forward. He has recently recorded as a sideman on several small ensemble jazz albums with trumpeter John Zappa, pianist Dan Karlsberg’s Nati 6 and bari saxophonist Larry Dickson and can be heard with these groups at various clubs in the Cincinnati area. He can also be found playing with many other small jazz groups with musicians like Art Gore, Phil DeGreg, Mike Sharfe, and Steve Schmidt to name a few.

He toured the world with two classic big bands: the Glenn Miller Orchestra from 1991-1992 and the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra in 1998 and again in 2000. Locally he is a member of the Cincinnati Contemporary Jazz Orchestra, and the Blue Wisp Big Band. He can also be found playing with the likes of the Pete Wagner Orchestra and other local big bands.

About Horace Silver

From the perspective of the 21st century, it is clear that few jazz musicians had a greater impact on the contemporary mainstream than Horace Silver. The hard bop style that Silver pioneered in the ’50s is now dominant, played not only by holdovers from an earlier generation, but also by fuzzy-cheeked musicians who had yet to be born when the music fell out of critical favor in the ’60s and ’70s.

Silver’s earliest musical influence was the Cape Verdean folk music he heard from his Portuguese-born father. Later, after he had begun playing piano and saxophone as a high schooler, Silver came under the spell of blues singers and boogie-woogie pianists, as well as boppers like Thelonious Monk and Bud Powell. In 1950, Stan Getz played a concert in Hartford, Connecticut, with a pickup rhythm section that included Silver, drummer Walter Bolden, and bassist Joe Calloway. So impressed was Getz, he hired the whole trio. Silver had been saving his money to move to New York anyway; his hiring by Getz sealed the deal.

Silver worked with Getz for a year, then began to freelance around the city with such big-time players as Coleman Hawkins, Lester Young, and Oscar Pettiford. In 1952, he recorded with Lou Donaldson for the Blue Note label; this date led him to his first recordings as a leader. In 1953, he joined forces with Art Blakey to form a cooperative under their joint leadership. The band’s first album, Horace Silver and the Jazz Messengers, was a milestone in the development of the genre that came to be known as hard bop. Many of the tunes penned by Silver for that record — “The Preacher,” “Doodlin’,” “Room 608” — became jazz classics. By 1956, Silver had left the Messengers to record on his own. The series of Blue Note albums that followed established him for all time as one of jazz’s major composer/pianists. LPs like Blowin’ the Blues Away and Song for My Father (both recorded by an ensemble that included Silver’s longtime sidemen Blue Mitchell and Junior Cook) featured Silver’s harmonically sophisticated and formally distinctive compositions for small jazz ensemble.Silver’s piano style — terse, imaginative, and utterly funky — became a model for subsequent mainstream pianists to emulate. Some of the most influential horn players of the ’50s, ’60s, and ’70s first attained a measure of prominence with Silver — musicians like Donald Byrd, Woody Shaw, Joe Henderson, Benny Golson, and the Brecker Brothers all played in Silver’s band at a point early in their careers. Silver has even affected members of the avant-garde; Cecil Taylor confesses a Silverinfluence, and trumpeter Dave Douglas played briefly in a Silver combo.

Silver recorded exclusively for Blue Note until that label’s eclipse in the late ’70s, whereupon he started his own label, Silveto. Silver’s ’80s work was poorly distributed. During that time he began writing lyrics to his compositions, and his work began to display a concern with music’s metaphysical powers, as exemplified by album titles like Music to Ease Your Disease and Spiritualizing the Senses. In the ’90s, Silver abandoned his label venture and began recording for Columbia. With his re-emergence on a major label, Silver once again received a measure of the attention his contributions deserve. Certainly, no one ever contributed a larger and more vital body of original compositions to the jazz canon. Silverdied in New York on June 18, 2014 at the age of 85.

Taken from AllMusic.com.