The Robson/Levy Quartet

The Robson/Levy Quartet

Friday, 30 September 2022, 8.00pm

Phil Robson - guitar
Jed Levy - tenor sax
David Lyttle - drums
Dan Bodwell - double bass

The Robson/Levy Quartet was formed in New York City in 2018 to perform the original compositions of the co-leaders in equal measure. Whilst Jed Levy is a celebrated mainstay of the NY scene, UK-born Phil Robson lived in the city for 5 five years from 2015, having previously been a major force in London for many years and has now made his home in Co. Roscommon. Having met and begun to play together in 2017 they quickly formed a great musical friendship. Both bring a wealth of experience and diversity to the bandstand, both as composers and musicians.

Robson is best known in Europe for his work with the cult UK band ‘Partisans’ which he co-led with saxophonist Julian Siegel for over 22 years, as well as with his partner, the great singer/songwriter Christine Tobin. He has led many projects featuring such legendary artists as Dave Liebman, Mark Turner, Billy Hart, James Genus, etc and he has played with a huge array of internationally acclaimed musicians ranging from Kenny Wheeler to Donny McCaslin, Django Bates to Barbra Streisand.

New Yorker Levy’s compositions have been performed and recorded by such luminaries as Mike Clark, Charlie Hunter, The Headhunters, Eddie Henderson, etc., and Jed has also performed and/or recorded with a wide variety of jazz music's finest, including Jaki Byard, Don Patterson, Jack McDuff, Lonnie Smith, Attila Zollar, The Village Vanguard Orchestra, Junior Mance, Cedar Walton, Tom Harrell, Curtis Fuller, and many others. Having initially played in major NYC venues such as Smalls, the 55 Bar, etc, with sold-out performances at Birdland, they went on to tour the UK and play gigs in Barcelona, Berlin, Rome, and completed a tour of Northern California in 2019 which included a highly successful show in the legendary Oakland club, Yoshi’s at which Peter Slavov and Billy Drummond completed the line-up.

The band they bring to The Dock, however, is European based and will feature the incredible drumming of Armagh-based drummer David Lyttle and bass playing of fantastic US-born, Galway-based Dan Bodwell.

David Lyttle’s music was described by the Independent as ‘the best in jazz coming out of Ireland in recent times. The MOBO Award-nominated drummer/composer has collaborated with some of the art world’s most prestigious figures, including jazz icons Joe Lovano and Kurt Rosenwinkel, hip hop stars Talib Kweli, and Soweto Kinch and during lockdown film legend Liam Neeson. He has brought his projects to Russia, the Middle East, SE Asia, China, and Morocco over the past two years, and in 2017 brought jazz to new audiences, from cowboys to UFO tourists, in a much-publicized coast-to-coast U.S. road trip sponsored by Yamaha and the Arts Council of Northern of Ireland.

Dan will be well known to Irish music fans for his work with Mary Coughlan, the Nigel Mooney Quartet, the Francesco Turrisi Trio, Sue Rynhart, Julie Feeney, and the RTÉ Concert Orchestra, the RTÉ Symphony Orchestra, the Quiet Music Ensemble, and the Crash Ensemble.

The music written and performed by Robson & Levy is innovative and contemporary, whilst drawing on the vast tradition of jazz, across a whole spectrum of styles. The emphasis is on strong melodies and grooves and the tunes are vehicles for improvisation, allowing each musician to bring their voice and to make them their own, a genuine musical melting pot!

Robson/Levy Quartet review quotes:

'This was high-powered jazz, not by dint of frenetic pace, volume, or assertiveness but by the beauty and coherence of the quartet sound that was at once polished but fresh and lively. That’s a difficult poise to strike, even for musicians as able as these, yet for all that they were fully engaged, each seemed entirely in his element.' Whitman Reviews @ Wakefield Jazz

'Added to the warmth of his sound and excellent command of the instrument, Levy is an impressive package deserving wider international recognition. Phil Robson is already gaining wider international recognition, as witnessed by the admiring comments on his playing from Peter Bernstein and Wayne Krantz to be found on his website. His great fluidity and fleet inventiveness were, as ever, balm for the ears.'
London Jazz News

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