New Orleans-born trumpeter Terence Blanchard (1962), another alumnus of
Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers (1982-86) like Wynton Marsalis (whom he replaced),
was, like Marsalis, heavily influenced by Freddie Hubbard's sound,
shot to the forefront of the hard-bop revival when he formed the quintet with
altoist Donald Harrison and pianist Mulgrew Miller
that debuted on New York Second Line (october 1983).
The more original
Crystal Stair (april 1987) and Black Pearl (january 1988)
featured pianist Cyrus Chestnut.
His "solo" career (still leading a sax-piano-trumpet quintet) began with
Terence Blanchard (december 1990), with the 13-minute Afro-Cuban shuffle Azania, and Simply Stated (october 1991).
The soundtrack for a Spike Lee film was turned into
The Malcolm X Jazz Suite (december 1992), again scored for his quintet.
That was his first major accomplishment as a composer
(Blues For Malcolm, Malcolm At Peace)
and as an original (not derivative) arranger.
Romantic Defiance (december 1994) and especially
Wandering Moon (june 1999), with Joe & O, perfected his baroque
mastery of the hard-bop quintet.
Blanchard's romantic ambience had become a cliche' within the cliche'.
Bounce (february 2003) expanded the quintet to a sextet by adding
electronic keyboardist Robert Glasper and guitarist Lionel Loueke, but marked
a retreat by the composer.
Magnetic (april 2013) featured saxophonist Brice Winston,
pianist Fabian Almazon, bassist Joshua Crumbly and drummer Kendrick
Blanchard's first opera Champion premiered in june 2013.
Absence (february 2020) is partly a tribute to
Wayne Shorter and features both the
E-Collective, consisting of Fabian Almazan (piano, keyboards), Charles Altura (guitar), David Ginyard (bass) and Oscar Seaton (drums),
and the Turtle Island Quartet (violinists David Balakrishnan and Gabe Terracciano, violist Benjamin von Gutzeit and celloist Malcom Parson).
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