New! 2020 CD ~ Round & Round
The newest and latest jazz release from Jeff Fuller & Friends, “Round & Round,” is now available through this website and online at CD Baby, iTunes and Amazon. Jeff Fuller's bass playing and his original jazz compositions are heard on the group’s 4th CD release since 2014, Jeff Fuller & Friends provide thoughtful and engaging original jazz compositions in an intimate piano trio setting. "Round & Round" features Fuller's virtuosic bass playing, pianist Darren Litzie's inventive improvisations, and drummer Ben Bilello's great soloing and accompaniment. Beautifully recorded by Norman Johnson, the trio explores all new territory on such compositions as "Round & Round," "Rest, Dear," "Sambeleza,” and the classically oriented "Never So Long," which features Fuller's bowed upright bass. This is music made for listening, so settle back and enjoy the journey!
“There is much to celebrate. “Happy New Year,” “New Bossa,” and “Sambeleza” sway forward on a tropical lilt, with piano lines so melodic that someone might be tempted to write lyrics to them… “If You Insist” — written by Litzie — sounds like its name, as the piano chords jab the driving rhythm forward, a setting that lends itself to some musical firecrackers… Fuller picks up the bow to take the melody on “Never So Long” his long lines and Litzie’s lush accompaniment make the number lean toward the symphonic… “Rest, Dear” comes off as a sly joke, as the knotty, sneaky melody and quick-stepping swing are much more likely to make people dance than take a breather… “Kernel Of Truth” is perhaps Fuller’s most clearly stated melody on the album, and feels almost already like a jazz standard in the best sense… Norman Johnson(‘s) … transparent, rich, and full recording brings out the most in Fuller’s compositions and the trio’s performance of them. The most cause for celebration, however, is the obvious musical chemistry between Fuller, Litzie, and Bilello…They’ve reached that place where the music feels loose and free, and at the same time, the rhythms are tight and together, making them excel as a group at whatever they set their hands to.” ~ Brian Slattery, New Haven Independent.
2018 CD ~ Happenstance
‘Happenstance’ by definition means a fortuitous coincidence; an unusually good event that arises by chance. Jeff Fuller & Friends is made up of Jeff Fuller on bass, Darren Litzie on piano, and Ben Bilello on drums. The classic jazz trio format gives rise to and makes room for many delightful moments of serendipitous exchange. In no small part this is due to listening – each member of the trio evidently hears the conversation as a whole while adding their own thoughts to the process. The result is an emotional, intelligent and lucid story that carries through from the first note to the last.
2016 CD ~ Shoreline Blues
Shoreline Blues is the second release for Jeff Fuller & Friends, a trio made up of some of the most active and in-demand jazz musicians in the New England area. Fuller formed the trio late in 2014 with the sole purpose of performing original jazz compositions by members of the group. Fuller's eclectic compositions are again featured, along with two new tunes by pianist Darren Litzie and unaccompanied bass performances of Ornithology and Oleo. The concept of the group - and of their CDs - is to perform new, original music which infuses older jazz styles with contemporary creativity. The trio’s performances are marked by the deep improvisatory interaction of Fuller, Litzie and drummer Ben Bilello — an amazing testament to the amount of listening going on.
“The keen musicianship on display throughout is nearly flawless, both in each player’s proficiency on his instrument and in his chemistry with the other band members. The musicians’ skill is matched by an unfussy, crystal-clear production.” Brian Slattery, New Haven Independent.
2014 CD ~ The Call From Within
My first CD of all original music - The Call From Within - is available on CD Baby, Amazon and iTunes. Also, you may order it from me! Of course, we will be selling it at live gigs. Visit Performances for a listing of current gigs where I will have the CD available.
Gigs in the not-too-future!
Sat. Jan. 11th, Jeff Fuller & Friends, Side Door Café, Old Lyme, 8:30 pm.
Thu., Jan. 23d, with Steve Sandberg, Pearl @ Longshore, Westport, 6:30 pm
Sun., Jan 26th, with John O'Hurley, Ridgefield Playhouse, 5:00 pm
Fri., Jan. 31st, Jeff Fuller & Friends, Smokin' w/Chris, Southington, 7:30 pm
Fri., Feb. 7th, Jeff Fuller & Friends, Shell & Bones, New Haven, 9:00 pm
Wed., Feb. 19th, Jeff Fuller & Friends, New Britain Mus. of Am. Art, 6:30pm
2014: Sambeleza ~ LIVE!
The new Sambeleza Live! CD is now available through our Sambeleza website – through CD Baby, Amazon and iTunes.
Or you can pick it up at any of my gigs, or at Sambeleza’s.
The CD was recorded at Summer Solstice Samba (6/21/14), sponsored by WPKN and Voices Café at the Unitarian Church
in Westport. Joining me, Isabella Mendes and Joe Carter
were our fabulous friends and guest artists, Ali Ryerson on flute, Adriano Santos on drums and Ze Mauricio on percussion. Crackling good Brazilian jazz!
Photo by Ben Bilello
College teaching gig at Yale!
I'm proud to be in the 4th year teaching in the Yale Jazz Initiative, where I have been coaching Yale undergraduate jazz combos along with my esteemed colleague, Wayne Escoffery. It is a great pleasure to see students who entered the program at the onset making such great progress in the language of jazz!
Here is a link to the announcement from the Yale School of Music.
WNHH-FM video interview, March 27, 2019