The Kennedy Center

Lee Konitz Quartet

Lee Konitz Quartet

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Beyond Category Series Jazz

Considered one of the driving forces of Cool Jazz, American jazz composer and alto saxophonist Lee Konitz is "able to erase context and preconceptions, and more or less blow your mind" (The New York Times).

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Named a 2009 NEA Jazz Master, alto saxophonist Lee Konitz is known for taking risks. One of the preeminent cool jazz saxmen, Konitz participated in Miles Davis's nonet performances and recordings (Birth of the Cool, 1948–50), famous both for bringing together nine notable musicians and for its place in the history of cool jazz. "He is a master at drawing out of the harmonic structure of a piece a seemingly endless stream of musical ideas, all of which he uses to create a mood that is coherent both within itself and in relation to the head" (All About Jazz).