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ClassicsOnline Home » MIKE NOCK / MARTY EHRLICH: The Waiting Game
By Glenn Astarita
All About Jazz
By Mark Keresman
Mike Nock (Piano)
Marty Ehrlich (clarinet, bass clarinet, alto & soprano saxophone)
The Waiting Game sees two of jazz music's most highly regarded players get together for their first duo recording. The venerable Mike Nock is Naxos Jazz's Music Director and has been a stalwart of the scene since his early days in the 60s with Sam Rivers and his seminal fusion unit, The Fouth Way. St. Louis-native Marty Ehrlich has become one of the most respected reed player in New York since the late 70s having played with Anthony Braxton, Julius Hemphill and Butch Morris. Ehrlich and Nock are both members of the acclaimed New York Jazz Collective, on the Naxos Jazz 1997 release, I Don't Know This World Without Don Cherry (86003-2).
In Patrick Hinely's words from the CD's liner notes, he writes that, Mike Nock's music take the listener to "places no one else has ever mentioned, yet all those places all feel like home." Contrary to the title of this duo session, the pianist and reedman certain aren't waiting around. They do some travelling!
With Ehrlich's eloquent clarinets and saxes, and New Zealander Nock's articulate comments and replies in this musical Socratic dialogue, the record's tone is at once playful and serious. It may not be a linear journey that they are undertaking but listeners willing to follow certainly will end up someplace fascinating. This is an engaging, thoughtful and melodic triumph. Well worth the trip.
Besides being Naxos Jazz's Music Director, Nock is one of the giants of the Australian jazz scene. His imposing CV stretches back to the mid-1960s including work in the USA as both sideman and leader, with artists as Rivers, Coleman Hawkins, Joe Henderson, Michael Brecker and Art Blakey. He also holds a faculty position at the Sydney Conservatorium. He has three other CDs on Naxos - I Don't Know This World Without Don Cherry; Not We But One with a trio and Ozboppin' in a quintet setting.
Marty Ehrlich's interest in music began early in St. Louis, Missouri. He performed on his first album in 1972 while still in high school. He left St. Louis to attend the New England Conservatory of Music as an Afro-American Music major, graduating with honors in 1977. The next year he moved to New York where his abilities as an improviser and multi-reed player have been in great demand. Among the artists he has led or performed with include Anthony Braxton, Jack DeJohnette, Julius Hemphill, Oliver Lake, Butch Morris, George Russell and John Zorn. In 1993, he won the Down Beat Critics Poll as Talent Deserving Wider Recognition on clarinet. He is also a member of the New York Jazz Collective, and leads a klezmer band called The Darkwoods Ensemble.
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MIKE NOCK / MARTY EHRLICH: The Waiting Game