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--- Jul 12 2000 Go to category
Subject: Seamus Blake
Category: Other Musicians
From: Morin Scott (Canada)

Hi Pat,

So nice to see you giving mention to one of my favourite saxophonists, Seamus Blake as an 'expansive artist'. It seems curious that Seamus hasn't been embraced by the critical community as much as he is from jazz fans, and fellow musicians. In fact, I don't remember ever seeing a review in any of the major jazz publications of his recordings on Criss Cross or of his work with The Bloomdaddies. I think the combination of Kurt Rosenwinkel and Seamus in a group is phenomenal, and it's great that you are supportive of his music. Ever thought about calling him for a gig??



Pat’s Answer:

seamus is really one of the musicians out there that i admire most - for his versatility and his genuine quest for the new and the different combined with a truly comprehensive view of the development of his instrument and it's role in jazz history. i saw him play a trio set one night at small's that did the thing that you always hope for as a listener - it left an indelible impression on me of what music could be and showed me a bunch of things that i had never thought of before. he also has the quality that really good players have of sort of compelling me to WANT to hear more about how HE hears things and learn about them. and then i heard the bloomdaddies - and my mind was blown again - i can't think of many things that have happened in the world of "rock" (and i use that term loosely here) in the past 10 or 15 years that are as interesting and just plain exciting as hearing those guys do what they are doing. it is such a great idea for a band.

as far as the "critical" reaction goes? sorry to say, but it is not the least bit surprising. same goes with the fact that brad mehldau was playing unbelievable music for several years before the critics "got it" - and was overlooked for many of the same reasons seamus might be now. in my opinion the same goes with brian blade's fellowship - easily the one of the best and freshest sounding new bands to show up in jazz in many, many years - and it goes right over the heads of most critics who just are unable to know what is good until enough of their musician friends and other fans hip them to it and shame them into the dap zone....and then if the guy or band finally does get some degree of success, they pretend that they heard it all along. not always, but often. but you know what? it doesn't matter anyway - the cats that know, know. and everyone knows that seamus is one of the most creative improvising musicians out there now. his time will come. and yes, i DO think about calling seamus for a gig sometime! hope to have the chance someday to play with him. thanks for writing in, scott.

best from pat m.