Licorice & Smoke
JESSICA LURIE is an internationally renowned composer, performance artist, and woodwind-er originally hailing from Seattle and now living in New York. She performs and records worldwide with the Tiptons Sax Quartet (formerly the Billy Tipton Memorial Sax Quartet), The Living Daylights, and New York's Latin group La Buya. Her own group, The Jessica Lurie Ensemble (JLE), highlights Lurie's talents as band leader and composer as well as player. Jessica's vocal prowess and skills on the saxophone and flute have garnered rave reviews internationally, and the diverse ground she covers has welcomed her into many musical scenes. Jessica's internationally touring group includes many well known artists on the jazz and alternative music scenes. Her current New York line-up features Todd Sickafoose on acoustic bass (Ani DiFranco), Allison Miller on drums (Natalie Merchant) and Erik Deutsch on keyboard. Other regular guests include Scott Amendola (dr), Jon Evans (bs, Tori Amos), Nels Cline (gtr, Wilco) and Julie Wolf (pn, Ani diFranco) as well as Italian musicians Zeno de Rossi (dr), Danilo Gallo (bs) and Giorgio Pacorig (pn). With an original repertoire ranging from American folk to groove, haunting Eastern European melodies, Latin rythms, free jazz and high-energy interaction between members, she and her band create a dynamic and fresh direction in music. Her newest recording LICORICE & SMOKE (Zipa!Music, November 2005) showcases the great musicianship of Nels Cline (gtr), Todd Sickafoose (bs) and Scott Amendola (dr). The new disk presents a repertoire that is '... truly interesting, varied and intense. She ... refuses to be limited by language or style when approaching the music and atmosphere of songs, be it Sicilian dialect, deep grooves, or combinations of sound that reflect the heat of the American south. What resonates strongly is that she performs all of these styles without ever losing her personality; Lurie has succeeded in imprinting herself on these various genres and not the other way around. ' (Paolo Bomben,Musicologi) She has collaborated with international artists such as Bill Frisell, The Indigo Girls, Danijel Zezelj, Amy Denio, The SHUA Dance Group, Ellen Fullman, Carlo Actis Dato, Skerik, The Pat Grainey Dance Company, Eyvind Kang, Wayne Horvitz, Paul McCandless, Booker T. Jones, Sleater Kinney, Steven Berstein and the Berkeley Symphony. Her projects have received support from CEC Artslink, The National Performance Network, Arts International, Artist Trust Seattle, Seattle, King County and Washington State Arts Commissions, Earshot Jazz, The Isabella Stewart Gardener Museum, The Croatian Ministry of Culture and Jack Straw Institute among others. Lurie started her own label, Zipa! Music in 2000, and she is featured on over 30 CDs as a leader and collaborator. She performs and teaches at workshops and jazz festivals worldwide, and her talents, song writing, avant-garde style and use of technology has marked her as an innovator in her field.