This Week's Day-by-Day Picks

Week of October 9, 2004

Tuesday, October 12

New Music Circle brings another international group to St. Louis, this time in the form of Conference Call. The quartet features Gebhard Ullmann on woodwinds, pianist Michael Jefry Stevens, bassist Joe Fonda and drummer/percussionist George Schuller, and they work in the "modern jazz" tradition. Mr. Night is not quite sure what makes their jazz modern -- is it their use of composition and improvisation, or their shared songwriting duties, or the fact that they chronologically follow post-bop and post-fusion? Whatever the terminology, there's no denying Conference Call's particular style of forward thrust. Their drive owes in large part to Fonda's sinewy bass propulsion. The group's theme song, "Conference Call" (from the album Final Answer), skips along on the power of Fonda's bouncy runs alone. Hear for yourself at 8 p.m. at the Washington University Gallery of Art (Forsyth and Skinker boulevards; 314-995-49630). Tickets are $6 to $12.

Individually, Michael Stevens, Gebhard Ullman, Joe 
Fonda and George Schuller are modern jazz 
musicians; together, they're Conference Call.
Manfred Kiesant
Individually, Michael Stevens, Gebhard Ullman, Joe Fonda and George Schuller are modern jazz musicians; together, they're Conference Call.

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