Kait Dunton Planet D'Earth CD Release
If not for trumpeter John Dearth, Kait Dunton (trioKAIT) might never have become a
professional musician. So its only appropriate that her sixth album, Planet Dearth, is both a collaboration with and a musical letter of gratitude to the man who changed the trajectory of her life. This record with John is a special thing, Dunton says. Its not just another album. Its a bigger story. A bigger meaning.
Dunton met Dearth in 2001 at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville. Shed been
playing piano for 15 years but had no sense of turning her love of music into a career. Still, the Spanish major found her way into Dearths improvisation class. Thats when everything changed. He was the first person to show her what a life built around music looked like. He told her she could build one of her own, moreover, he saw that she needed to. John Dearth was like a planet that reoriented the gravitational pull of her life to center around music.
Fifteen years after meeting him, the idea came to her while sitting in L.A. traffic. It was an imperative: I have to make a record with John. She spent the next year planning and writing. In the summer of 2017, Dearth came to L.A., and they recorded for two days at Sphere Studios. The result is a collection of new compositions based less on a specific sound than on an idea, an exploration of John Dearth as man and musician. John is very much interested in the meaning of music, the emotion or story behind it, so this felt like the right approach, Dunton says. She used facets of Dearths personality and playing style as inspiration to guide the listener on a journey, from fun and adventurous to moody and minimalist. Apropos of the concept, Dearth also contributed three songs.
For those familiar with Dunton's ongoing band, trioKAIT, Planet Dearth is a sojourn from the signature style she's created. A large focus for trioKAIT is having a tight sound as a band, Dunton explains. This project is more exploratory, more contemplative. My focus was on storytelling and compositional style. That style, a study in counterpoint and balance, gave Dunton an opportunity to assemble a group of interconnected musicians for
something more meaningful than just a studio date. Grammy Award- winning saxophonist Bob Mintzer joins Dearth on a recording for the first time, but the two have been friends since the 1970s, when they performed together for a summer in the Catskills. Dane
Alderson, on electric bass, not only plays with Mintzer in the jazz- fusion band Yellowjackets, he lives in Charlottesville, where he and Dearth often share the stage. Drummer Jake Reed (also the rhythmic identity of trioKAIT) is married to Dunton, and they both know Mintzer from their music studies at the University of Southern California, where Mintzer teaches.
For Dunton, all these threads add up to another thematic element. Throughout her career, she's sought to grow and evolve, to clarify her musical voice. This album is a chance to pause and reflect in a way, to move at once backward and forward. It's an acknowledgement of who she was and who shes become. On Planet Dearth, Dunton spins at the core, the source of gravity pulling together people who affected her transformation.
This release has garnered terrific reviews http://somethingelsereviews.com/2019/02/06/kait-dunton-with-john-dearth-planet-dearth-2019/
and is #9 on the jazz charts!
So what more can we say? We'll see you there...
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