Inheritance

Title : Inheritance
Release Date : October 23, 2012
Format : CD

Inheritance is the sophomore CD by Todd Marcus, one of the few musicians worldwide to concentrate on bass clarinet as a primary solo instrument in jazz improvisation. The follow-up to Marcus’s 9-piece orchestra recording In Pursuit of the 9th Man, Inheritance showcases Marcus’s compositional and virtuosic improvisational abilities in the modern mainstream quartet setting with two distinct rhythm sections. One features Marcus with Xavier Davis on piano, Eric Wheeler on bass, and Eric Kennedy on drums, playing Marcus’s more introspective pieces and is augmented by special guest Don Byron on clarinet on three tracks. The other rhythm section features George Colligan on piano, Wheeler on bass, and Warren Wolf on drums, helping to propel Marcus’s more uptempo compositions, including the burning opening track, “The Adventures of Kang and Kodos.” Compositions like “Herod,” “Wahsouli,” and “Blues for Tahrir” reflect Marcus’s recent efforts to incorporate Middle Eastern themes in his writing, a nod to his paternal Egyptian heritage. Original arrangements of Monk’s “Epistrophy” and the venerable standard “Bye Bye Blackbird” reflect at once a reverence for jazz tradition and Marcus’s knack for harmonic and rhythmic reinvention. As JazzTimes contributor David R. Adler writes in the album liner notes, “It was In Pursuit of the 9th Man that made people sit up and take notice of Marcus – he was quickly tapped as a core arranger and composer for Orrin Evans’s incendiary Captain Black Big Band – and it’s Inheritance that will propel him to the next stages of his creative journey.” Marcus’s music is infused with the same humane spirit that drives his efforts as head of the nonprofit Newborn Holistic Ministries, which focuses on poverty-related issues in Baltimore. As Adler observes, music informed by such concern and commitment “is bound to sound more multi-dimensional and alive, and it’s certainly borne out when Marcus takes to the studio and stage.”

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