Claudia Quintet to play First Night

From the Boston Globe, the Claudia Quintet will play Boston’s First Night fest this week.

NEW YORK – When percussionist and composer John Hollenbeck, an eclectically minded veteran of the New York scene with a portfolio ranging from big band and klezmer to avant-garde “new music,’’ set out to form his own group, he didn’t necessarily expect to make something as unusual – nor as durable – as the Claudia Quintet.

Now nine years old and about to release its fourth CD, the quintet features a distinctive front line of clarinet, vibraphone, and accordion. Its distinctive sound and Hollenbeck’s ambitious yet accessible compositions have earned critical acclaim and fueled the emergence of Hollenbeck, 41, as a prominent composer, a Guggenheim fellowship recipient who is frequently solicited for adventurous new commissions.

JOHN HOLLENBECK’S CLAUDIA QUINTET
At: First Church in Boston, Thursday, sets at 9 p.m. and 10:15 p.m.
Information and First Night buttons at http://www.firstnight.org

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Claudia Quintet at REDCAT Reviewed

From the Los Angeles Times:

The accordion isn’t exactly one of the more common instruments in jazz. Yet in the context of the genre-shifting mix of New York’s Claudia Quintet, the accordion sounded so natural at REDCAT on Wednesday night that it’s fair to start questioning just why it doesn’t make an appearance more often.

Of course, the same can be asked of the quintet. Composed of veterans from New York City’s jazz scene, the Claudia Quintet doesn’t make its way west very often. But the audience of CalArts students and older jazz heads were treated to an evening with a versatile band that deserves mention among the top ensembles in jazz today.

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