\"...for what I wanted in a drummer, Al Foster had all of it.\"
- Miles Davis
Miles Davis was known for his eccentric way of life and his impulsive actions. The prelude of the above mentioned quote is about the dismissal of Jack DeJohnette from the band, after hearing Foster play live in 1972 at the Cellar Club on 95th Street in Manhattan. Although no one would ever dare to fire Mr. DeJohnette nowadays, Miles made up his mind and wanted the young, upcoming talent in his band. Al Foster became one of his most important drummers and best friends until his death in 1991. In a period of 15 years Foster played on and off with Miles, one of the most influential innovators of the Jazz in its modern days.
Al Foster Quintet
July 22, 2007 Al brought his quintet to the Bimhuis. Together with Eddie Henderson on trumpet, Eli Degibri on tenor and soprano sax, Aaron Goldberg on piano, Doug Weiss on double bass and guest artist John Nugent on tenor sax, the master drummer gave away a sensational performance in a nearly sold-out venue.
And as a good band leader should, Al was in control the whole concert with his forcing game. His dynamics kept the band sharp, resulting in a variety of beautiful arrangements and improvisations that showed the musicality of each band member. In the band, listening is the most important element, technique the means, and band leader the impulse for the spontaneous arrangements. Just as free as Foster\'s playing always is. Miles was right, Al Foster is the master of the groove and with that groove and his incredible sense for the right changes in songs, he pushes the band in the direction where he wants them. Pulling them to follow the drums, yet at the same time showing his dependence on the bass, \"The bass is my leader\".
\"I passed the test\"
Foster is proud to have played with Miles. \"I played with Miles. I passed the test.\" Obviously the band played several songs from Miles\' collection, and some oldies from John Coltrane’s song book. The audience was more then overwelmed by the concert and showed her appreciation with applauses that are hard to forget. Foster undoubtly showed once again, he is timeless. With the ability to make \'old\' jazz sound new and as popular as ever. An inspiration for every musician!
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