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INTERVIEW w/ Gabe Jarrett - VORCZA

Jay Funk Dawg

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Thursday, Dec 9

Vorcza trio with Word People

El Mocambo, $8



questions by Jaydawg, Timmy B and Jambands.ca

Gabe Jarrett (Drums, Percussion - The Vorcza Trio) has toured internationally and recorded with the Jazz Mandolin Project. He has performed with Michael Ray and the Cosmic Crewe, Gordon Stone, James Harvey, Matt Schulman, Peter Apfelbaum, The Jazz Passengers, Adam Kolker, Karl Berger and many others. He has taught percussion at Goddard College and the University of Vermont. At the New School Jazz Program he performed with Thomas Chapin, Peter Madsen and Sam Furnace.

When did the three of you get together as a band? And what made it happen?

"We got together about 4 or 5 years ago..at first it was just an outlet to play some loose interpretations of jazz tunes (monk, mingus, shorter), but the originals developed quickly. Becoming a "band" took a little longer, but, one by one, we all realized there was some potential here."

Who are some of your influences, specifically in the music you perform in Vorcza?

"I sometimes ask myself this question WHILE i'm playing Vorcza's music, and i still can't figure it out..I know what i like, and i know what i'm listening to at any given time, but we have a pretty strong identity as a band i think..it seems to trump all influences. I listen to alot of modern, New York jazz..Dave Douglas, Ben Allison, Steven Bernstien, Jim Black, ..it gets even more obscure from there, but i also love Tom Waits, Elvis Costello, Elliot Smith, Chris Whitley..

Your album "Maximalist" was released in 2002. Nearing the end of 2004 have you three written and/or recorded material for your follow up album?

"We are 80% finished with our next album, and, to be honest it's "going to RULE"

Your Manager Keith has mentioned that Ray has started to sing in the group, is that an entirely different personality of the band or does it fit into what the Vorcza Trio is already doing?

" I think it fits in perfecly. We weren't sure at first, but i'm sold. If you think of the voice as an extention of one's personality, then how could it NOT fit in..We have about 5 tunes that incorporate words+vocals, so, we're taking it slow."

How do you come up with the titles of your songs when you write instrumentals?

"Song titles are a totally ramdom act. We we're playing an un-named instrumental in the Maritimes, and named it "Th'Giver", but changed it to "Good on Ya" when we heard someone say that. We could probably name all future tunes based on the regional dialects of Canada..maybe we will."

When you perform in concert do you three have a setlist or do you perform the gigs on the fly?

"If we have a few spare minutes, we write some tunes down, but it often changes anyway."

The Vorcza Trio has done on the East Coast of Canada, and has played the Evolve Festival, what are your views about Canadian Audiences as opposed to the American ones?

"So far, we've been amazed by the support you give to live music up here. An open mind is all it takes, but those can be rare in the "ultra-jaded" cities of the US. We think we're lucky to live so close to the border so, "come on Ontario, prove us right!!"

Is this your first visit to Southern Ontario? If so what took you three so long?

"We've had trouble building a sensible run out your way..Northern NY can be really dead, and Montreal isn't a great city for live music (except during the festivals).

What are the challenges of follow in your Father's footsteps, in becoming a jazz musician. Your brother is a musician, how has the musician's lifestyle of constant travelling affected the dynamics of a musical family?

"There are alot of challenges inherent in making this choice..with or without a family name, it can be rough..it's not just the travel. I've spent alot of time trying to find a region that would be supportive to a "localized" music career, and in the US, there pretty much are none...My father's name has helped and hurt: If you love his work, then people assume that i'll be a genius. If you hate his work, then people assume i'm a fraud..neither thing is true, i'm just a person that loves to play music, and i've made that a priority..now, if i were Gabriel Springsteen, or Gabriel Bowie, or Gabriel Spears..i'm drifting into a dream-state."

How hard is it to adequately describe the band's sound without comparisons to other organ trios?

It's hard. There are similarities to MMW..the intrumentation is the same, there's a focus on improvisation, and so on. I think we have become much more "compositional" than they are..the vocals add another level to that. The organ trio is a really popular format right now, but as with any trio, the fact that there are only 3 personalities on stage makes it pretty personal..We can't hide behind eachother, musically or otherwise."

The Vorcza Trio w/ Word People


Thursday, Dec 9

Vorcza trio with Word People (featuring Ray P. Trey Anasatio Band and Dave Matthews and Friends CD Tour keyboardist)

El Mocambo Upstairs




Featuring Ray Paczkowski (Trey Anastasio Band, Dave Matthews and Friends) on organ, Gabriel Jarrett (Jazz Mandolin Project, son of jazz piano great Keith Jarrett) on drums and Rob Morse (Viperhouse). Known for their explosive, high-energy live shows, Vorcza is earning recognition as one of Vermont's most exciting improvisational ensembles. This trio of musicians and composers has, in only a few years, developed a singular style of playing together. Their music takes audiences to dizzying heights of rhythmic and harmonic exploration while still satisfying listeners who crave melody and nuance.


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