Phillip Johnston's Transparent Quartet


       Phillip Johnston - soprano, alto & tenor saxophones
       Joe Ruddick - piano, baritone saxophone
       Mark Josefsberg - vibraphone
       David Hofstra - bass, tuba


THE TRANSPARENT QUARTET was led by Phillip Johnston in the late 90s, following Big Trouble, and before that, The Microscopic Septet. This four piece unit combined influences ranging from classical European music, twentieth-century composition, the west coast "cool school," and experimental jazz. In addition to original works by Johnston and pianist Joe Ruddick, the band's repertoire featured arrangements of music written by Frederic Chopin, Claude Debussy, Charles Mingus, Art Pepper, Steve Lacy, and Charles Gounod. A drum-less band, The Transparent Quartet aims to combine the discipline and dynamics of chamber music with the energy and freedom of jazz.

Phillip Johnston utilized The Transparent Quartet to make music for several projects, including: scores for silent films: The Unknown (1927), by Tod Browning, starring Lon Chaney & Joan Crawford, & The Georges Méliès Project, featuring 7 films by the French pioneer of the fantastic & delirious. The TQ also performed an original score (called "sweetly lolloping by The New York Times, and "sourly bouncy" by The Village Voice) by Johnston, "The Further Adventures of Slap & Tickle", during a 3 week run at Dance Theater Workshop with Keely Garfield's Sinister Slapstick. 1999 saw a new collaboration, "Minor Repairs Necessary" The TQ performed at the Texaco New York & Panasonic Jazz Festivals, on tour in Florence, Italy, live on WKCR-FM, WFMU-FM & WNYC-FM.

Recordings:

The Needless Kiss

The Merry Frolics of Satan: The Georges Méliès Project

Page of Madness




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