Celebrating Giuseppi Logan
May 14, 2023 7:00pm
On May 14 at Solar Myth, Ars Nova Workshop will celebrate the life and legacy of the iconoclastic saxophonist and Philadelphia native Giuseppi Logan, who passed away in April 2020 from COVID-19 at age 84.
A mysterious but strongly admired figure in the realm of avant-garde jazz, Giuseppi Logan is best known for his pair of mid-60s releases on ESP-Disk. Ferocious and raw, these albums provoked wide-ranging reactions but would remain influential on generations of musical envelope-pushers. Logan himself largely disappeared from view for the next four decades as he struggled with a combination of mental illness and substance abuse, his story paralleling that of fellow Philadelphian Henry Grimes (who coincidentally passed away the same week).
Logan made a celebrated return to view in 2010 with a new album and a memorable Ars Nova-presented concert featuring pianist Dave Burrell, trumpeter Matt Lavelle and the now deceased bassist Francois Grillot. According to Lavelle, the concert was the highlight and greatest moment of his attempted comeback as Logan was in top form. He would tragically again be institutionalized a few years later.
For this memorial, Logan’s ally and trumpet player Matt Lavelle has organized a group to get as close as possible to the realness and vulnerability in Giuseppi’s music and sound. In addition to the music, several people will be giving spoken remembrances and thoughts about Giuseppi’s message. Darius Jones is the realest alto player today and had a special connection with Logan. Grandmaster Dave Burrell was Logan’s contemporary and also recorded on his comeback album with Lavelle. Drummer Bobby Kapp, who also recorded with Marion Brown and Noah Howard, knew and performed with Giuseppi in the late 60’s. Rounding out the group is Philadelphia based bassist Pete Dennis. The group will play a combination of Logan’s music from his ESP classics as well as new music he composed during his brief resurgence.
Logan remains a towering, if sometimes hidden figure of the free jazz period of the 60’s. His music was always extremely personal and original, and one of the purest representations of the musical environment at the time. Burrell, Kapp, Jones, Lavelle, and Dennis will attempt to enter and celebrate the mystery of the great Giuseppi Logan.
$30 General Admission
21 & Over
This is a seated show.