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Dave Rempis Kicks Off January Residency at the Hungry Brain with an Array of Local Collaborators

by Madonna

Chicago, IL – Saxophonist Dave Rempis, celebrated for his four-decade journey in mastering the alto, tenor, and baritone saxophones, launches an exciting January residency at the Hungry Brain. This residency marks a significant milestone for Rempis, who first embarked on his saxophone journey in Massachusetts back on January 4, 1984.

Rempis, an ethnomusicology graduate from Northwestern University in 1997, rose to prominence as a vital force in the Vandermark 5. Throughout his career, he has cultivated a flexible improvisational language, collaborating with an extensive list of partners, including Michael Zerang, Lasse Marhaug, Christof Kurzmann, Paul Giallorenzo, and Elisabeth Harnik. Notably, Rempis has led various ensembles, all sharing a commitment to free improvisation.

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Despite his international acclaim, Rempis has consciously chosen to highlight local talent during his residency at the Hungry Brain. The eight ensembles featured on all four Thursdays in January predominantly include Chicago-based musicians, showcasing the richness of the city’s improvisational music scene.

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The opening night on January 4 saw Rempis joining forces with cellist Tomeka Reid and bassist Joshua Abrams. Both Reid and Abrams are accomplished bandleaders in their own right, contributing to a nuanced and adroit musical dialogue.

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The second set on January 4 featured Rempis and Abrams collaborating with vibraphonist Jason Adasiewicz and drummer Tyler Damon. This ensemble, though not having released any records yet, has honed its craft in delivering a captivating mix of high-octane, jazz-rooted improvisation and expansive walls of sound over the past couple of years.

The subsequent Thursdays promise equally compelling lineups. On January 11, Rempis will engage in a longstanding partnership with drummer Avreeayl Ra and a trio with violinist Mark Feldman and drummer Tim Daisy. January 18 features a new duo with pianist Mabel Kwan and a quartet with trumpeter Russ Johnson, bassist Jakob Heinemann, and drummer Jeremy Cunningham. Closing the residency on January 25, the audience can anticipate the first Chicago appearance of Rempis’s duo with guitarist Tashi Dorji, along with a set featuring Abrams, Ra, and keyboardist Jim Baker.

As a seasoned concert organizer and performer, Rempis’s decision to spotlight local collaborators underscores his commitment to the vibrant Chicago music community. The Hungry Brain residency offers music enthusiasts an unparalleled opportunity to witness the convergence of Rempis’s mastery and the diverse talents within the city’s thriving improvisational scene.

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