Muse-Eek.com MSK 301)
Street Date January 7, 2014Rich Rosenthal-Guitar, Joe Giardullo-Sop.sax,
Craig Nixon-Bass, Matt Crane Drums
The music you are about to hear is not Easy Listening.
But it is a reflection of a life lived uneasily; a life spent in revelation, search, struggle and finally, fulfillment.
Revelation: at the age of 13 Richard Rosenthal’s guitar teacher and mentor Dave Moreno starts taking him to hear the music of Sam Rivers, Ornette Coleman, Cecil Taylor, Bill Dixon, Sun Ra, the Art Ensemble of Chicago, Steve Lacy, Jimmy Lyons and Frank Wright. Rosenthal reacts: “mind blowing…deeply spiritual…these players were playing with a life and death sense of urgency. Most of the musicians I met seemed to be shocked that I was at their performances, and encouraged me to play and study their music.”
Search: Richard’s heart’s desire is to attend Music and Arts High School and then go on to the Berklee School of Music in Boston, but his blue collar parents, having grown up during the Depression era, cannot understand or support his goal of being a working career musician. Struggle: His parent’s lack of empathy triggers drug and alcohol abuse. When he is 17 his parents retire and move the family to rural Wappingers Falls, NY. He is isolated, cut off from the city environment. But he continues to play and study through a haze of addiction and severe depression.
Fulfillment: In 1991 Rosenthal wins the battle with his demons and is finally sober. He starts to focus on music again and graduates from The New School jazz program with a BFA in 2006. This is accomplished while working nights repairing trains for the Metro North railroad system. He starts playing out and composing his own music which you now hold in your hands.
It has been a tough journey. But the elements that spoke so strongly to Rosenthal at an early age are all here, and more. These mature pieces are a combination of written structured compositions integrated with free improv, indicating a fresh and disciplined direction for contemporary music.
At this point Richard Rosenthal has played many venues in the HV area, including the Knitting Factory, CBGB, and Roulette. He has played and recorded with some of the top musicians in the avant garde and jazz world such as Joe McPhee, Joe Giardullo, Robert Glasper, Daniel Levin, David Arner, Dee Pop, Pauline Oliveros, Mark Dresser, Lisle Ellis, Donald Robinson, Dominic Duval, Jackson Krall, Mike Bisio an Chris Kelsey.
In addition, Rich has studied with influential teachers such as Andrew Cyrille, Reggie Workman, Rich Boukas, Kirk Nurock, Bill Kirchner, Edgar Grana, Kenny Wessel, Dave Woods, Eddie Diehl and Bruce Arnold.
Falling Up is Rich’s first recording as a leader, following his critically acclaimed sideman debut on the 2005 recording “Red Morocco” by the Joe Giardullo Open Ensemble, released on RogueArt Records.
“In making this recording I would like to thank all my family friends, the musicians on the date for their great playing and, most of all, Bruce Arnold for his continued support and belief in my music.” Rich Rosenthal
Artist Website: http://richrosenthal.tumblr.com