Lao Tizer

Downbeat, the first studio album of TIZER’s multi-cultural band, features a mix of jazz, classical, jam band and Afro Cuban rhythms. It is a powerful collection of 12 originals from the composer/keyboardist Lao Tizer. This stunning release of instrumental music by one of today’s rising stars in world-fusion has a lot to offer. TIZER, who have been a prominent player in contemporary jazz for the past few years has drawn comparisons to the early 70s and 80s jazz fusion eras when pioneering ensembles such as Mahavishnu Orchestra, Return To Forever and Weather Report set the standard. Lao gathered a group veteran musicians from around the world to help him embody the spirit and title of his 2007 solo album Diversify. The eclectic set was co-produced by Jeff Kollman and Lao, and includes five original compositions and many collaborations with his fellow musicians, including “World In Rhythm,” which Lao wrote with Emmy winner Chieli Minucci. Chieli Minucci is best known for founding and leading Special EFX. TIZER, a nominee for “Jazz Group of the year” in 2011, has taken their multifaceted world fusion vibes around the globe. They have been a force to be reckoned with at festivals such as the Java Jazz Festival (Jakarta), the Joy of Jazz Festival (Japan), Barbados Jazz Festival, Caribbean Sea Jazz Festival, and the Festival International Providencia Jazz, Santiago, Chile. Their 2012 support for Downbeat includes four concerts in Russia and the Jarasum International jazz festival in South Korea. TIZER’s multi-genre appeal extends beyond jazz fans. Diversify was nominated for the Billboard Contemporary Jazz Chart in 2002, while Lao was a nominee for “Best New Jazz Artist”. Their varied resume includes performances alongside Jethro Tull and Isaac Hayes, Jethro Tull, Al Jarreau. Those who haven’t yet experienced TIZER’s intensity, expansive arrangements and exciting soloing in concert got the next best thing with the group’s 2010 debut release TIZER Live, which captured the vibrant interaction of what Lao calls “the ultimate cultural and musical melting pot”; Italian-American New Yorker Minucci, African American violin great Karen Briggs and Cuban born drummer/percussionist Raul Pineda, in addition to Kollman, Steve Nieves (sax/vocals/percussion) and Lao himself, who grew up in Boulder, Colorado. Rufus Philpot, a London-based bassist, joined TIZER following that recording. TIZER recorded their first live performance at the Musicians Institute in Hollywood. It featured new interpretations of seven songs from Lao’s earlier recordings (Diversify and Golden Soul) as well as new arrangements. Lao co-produced Downbeat for the first time. When it came to writing and recording the album, Lao loved the band’s big sound and all its intricacies in live settings. He says, “Producing and Mixing with Jeff, my goal to give listeners an idea of the energy TIZER creates live, so most recording was done in the studio.” “While it is impossible to capture the live performance onstage, Downbeat should have the same balance through strong arrangements and studio production. It all begins with a fully live rhythm section (drums, bass percussion, keys) which creates an organic foundation from which to build.

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