In the era of individual “star” instrumentalists, the idea of a truly collective trio can be a difficult concept to fathom. Yet collectivity is what the FLY trio strives for; and collectivity is what they so unabashedly and unquestionably achieve. Ballard, Grenadier and Turner represent three rather distinct musical personalities — simultaneously complimentary and contrasting — who have created a cohesive unit that expresses each part while creating an uniquely realized whole. In other words, they celebrate the group, without sacrificing the individual.

“FLY is progressively bringing together many musical elements, traditions, histories and mysteries,” says Turner. “ Multiplicity is presented under an unassuming hat. Meaning, we are working toward saying it all without saying it all, expressing complexity by simplicity. Musically speaking, we are creating songs that can be heard on a number of levels and from a variety of different viewpoints.”

Although, drummer Jeff Ballard, bassist Larry Grenadier and tenor saxophonist Mark Turner have individually charted very distinct and highly successful musical careers — one, both or all have graced the performances and recordings of Chick Corea, Joshua Redman, Brad Mehldau, Kurt Rosenwinkel, Pat Metheny, Charles Lloyd, to name just a few — the formation of the trio seems, in retrospect almost inevitable. FLY needed to happen.

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