Berklee BeanTown Jazz FestivalThe H.5 Collective
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The H.5 Collective was born in the late nights of New England Conservatory's dorm life when five friends from all across the country (and even outside of it) decided to give in to their insomnia and jam. It was then that Charles Burchell, Gus Carns, Kimberly Mayo, Parker McAllister, and Aquiles Navarro realized that the ease and fun of their friendship translated to their group sound as well.
All students of jazz at NEC, the H.5 Collective aims to first serve the music's tradition by honoring those who have influenced them most, such as Thelonious Monk, Miles Davis, John Coltrane, and Sarah Vaughan, among many others. However, the band is careful not to turn influence into plain plagiarism, and they tastefully mix the heavy influence of "traditional" jazz with the courage to shirk convention and infuse their own voices into the music of their idols.
With sounds as diverse as New Orleans, New York, Seattle, Panama, and Chicago coming together, the results are always exciting. Burchell keeps the music swinging with his powerful, spring-loaded drumsticks. McAllister holds it down with bass lines that blaze both supportively and creatively. Carns inspires dream-like states with piano work pretty enough to paint; Navarro brings Panamanian fire to his bebop-minded trumpet playing; and Mayo sails on top with the earthy, rich singing that invokes the emotion of vocalists from decades past, while staying true to her young, original voice. This show is part of the Jazz Revelation Records showcase.