Common Quartet began as a band of friends in Brooklyn, hosting a weekly jam session in the culturally vibrant neighborhood of Bed-Stuy. Coming together every Monday to workshop original music and host the jam session has been a unifying ritual for the band and its audience. Their freshman release, The Hive, featuring Steve Cardenas, is a product of that ritual, and a mile marker in a creative process that continues to evolve and flourish. The album title, The Hive, is no accident. The music conveys an energetic and collective effort. The compositions are extremely varied in their style and mood, combining standards and lyrical original compositions in a modern presentation of the jazz tradition. Evident throughout is the hive-like chemistry, particularly in the improvising sections. The push and pull between players pops with energy, yet produces a focused and cohesive sound. Through form, repertoire, and improvisation, Common Quartet has embodied the spirit of the jazz tradition, while forging its own identity.
New York City
Common Quartet offers clinics for students of various ages and levels of experience.
As a modern jazz quartet rooted in the jazz tradition, many practical topics are
discussed and expanded upon, including:
- Playing and improvising over standard jazz tunes
- Interpreting a melody and the importance of learning lyrics
- Common jazz forms such as blues, rhythm changes
- Jazz history
- Improvising as a group - interaction, support
- Role of each part of the rhythm section - piano, bass, drums
- Composition ideas, arranging as a band
- Modern rhythmic ideas
- Being a working jazz band in New York City
In addition, our clinics afford music students the opportunity to come up and play,
both with Common Quartet, and with each other, to apply the ideas presented