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Cliff Brucker's Full Circle Sextet Featuring Leo Russo Kicks off Spring Jazz at the Arts Center
Art Center of the Capital District
Troy , NY
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Capital District Jazz, a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization, is proud to introduce our new concert series, Spring Jazz at the Art Center, with Cliff Brucker bringing his swinging Full Circle Sextet,   featuring the incomparable saxophonist Leo Russo, to the Arts Center of the Capital Region in Troy on April 24!  Brucker, a stalwart of the Capital Regions jazz scene, has assembled some of the areas finest players to celebrate the release of his new CD, Cliff Brucker's Full Circle Sextet Vol. 2.

This stellar lineup includes: Cliff Brucker-drums, Leo Russo-alto & tenor saxophones, Dylan Canterbury-trumpet & flugelhorn, Wayne Hawkins-piano, Mike Novakowski-guitar, and Otto Gardner-bass. Yes, Spring is Springier with CDJ's new jazz series in Troy!

The concert serves as a showcase for one of the areas musical treasures. Leo Russo, now in his eighties, still commands the bandstand and is a living encyclopedia of the jazz language. One of the greatest musicians to ever come out of the Capital District, Brucker notes, Leo has a sound and a sense of musicality that he alone possesses, you know its Leo from the very first note!  Influenced by Stan Getz, Leos early career included working with the swing era bandleader Bobby Sherwood and then a stint on the West Coast in bands including a small group led by drummer Buddy Rich.  Returning to the Capital Region to raise his family, hes been a major figure on the area jazz scene for over fifty years. After teaching music in the Troy School District for 26 years he is now enjoying retirement and continuing to grace listeners with his beautiful saxophone sound.  

As Leo brings a lifetime of experience to the bandstand, young trumpeter/flugelhornist Dylan Canterbury brings us the future of jazz. A graduate of the jazz studies program at SUNY Purchase, he began playing professionally in high school and has studied privately with trumpet legends Jon Faddis, Jim Rotundi and Ray Vega. He is an in demand player, working both locally and in NYC and is an accomplished composer, arranger and transcriber whose work has been performed by the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra, Jon Faddis Jazz Orchestra, and Barcelona Jazz Orchestra among others. On top of that, he is an exciting soloist who connects instantly with his audience.

The rhythm section is comprised of the cream of the Capital Regions jazz scene. Guitarist Mike Novakowski has played for many years in various combinations with Cliff and Leo. He performs regularly with the Teresa Broadwell Band and has frequently performed with the Empire Jazz Orchestra. His tasty, swinging, Wes Montgomery and Jim Hall-influenced style fits hand-in-glove with Leos melodic approach. Wayne Hawkins is a versatile pianist fluent in many styles which has made him a much sought after accompanist since arriving in our area from Kansas City a few years ago. He has performed and recorded with a wide variety of artists nationwide, and has recently published books on contemporary piano technique and harmony. Otto Gardner is one of the premier bass players in the area and beyond. Locally he has played with practically everyone. Some of his notable associations over the years include being in the last quartet of the legendary Nick Brignola, being a founding member of the Empire Jazz Orchestra, and his long standing weekly gig with pianist Lincoln Mayorga at the Blue Plate Restaurant in Chatham.  His solid time and rich harmonic sense give his band mates the freedom to soar.

Last but by no means least is drummer Cliff Brucker.  You can add composer, producer, arranger, pianist, educator, the list goes on. Fortunately it includes band leader. In between being on the music faculty of Schenectady County Community College and producing award winning music for advertising and industrial clients, Cliff has returned to his first love, the drum set, and has put together a swinging jazz group. We can thank him for coming Full Circle.

Capital District Jazz, Ltd is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization whose members are jazz musicians and enthusiasts. Our mission is to build and serve a wider audience for jazz through education, create performance opportunities for jazz musicians in the region and develop venues for these pursuits.

Our Spring Jazz at the Arts Center series continues on Wednesday, May 30th with the Brian Patneaude Quartet.

CDJ is offering a number of free tickets for youth age 17 and under.  If you are interested in obtaining a free ticket please inquire via email info@cdjazz.org.
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There are still tickets available at the door for this concert. Please call 518-269-5900. Thank you for your interest in Spring Jazz at the Arts Center! Our next concert is scheduled for Wednesday, May 30, 2018, 7:30 PM with The Brian Patneaude Quartet


Art Center of the Capital District (View)
265 River St.
Troy , NY 12180
United States


Music > Jazz

Kid Friendly: Yes!
Dog Friendly: No
Non-Smoking: Yes!
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes!


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