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A Perfectly Tuned Evening Every Time...
Opened in 2008, The Dirty Dog is one of the premiere destinations in the United States for world class Jazz and cuisine. It combines the charm of an English-style pub with intimacy and meticulous attention to detail and hospitality.
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The Dirty Dog brings together the musicians and guests in a way that creates a lasting impression and desire to come back.
May 14, 2018

 

 

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Detroit based, world renowned saxophonist, Dave McMurray makes his Blue Note Records debut with his seventh album “Music is Life” which will be released May 18th.

 

 

Blue Note’s president and fellow Detroiter, Don Was and Dave McMurray, have worked together since the debut of Was’ self-titled 1981 debut with Was (Not Was). McMurray not only played on all of the band’s albums he has become Was’ saxophonist of choice for many of his various other projects over the years.

 

 

Always a favorite at the Dirty Dog where he’s been a regular for many years, Dave has played with a diverse A-list of artists ranging from The Rolling Stones, and Bob Dylan to Herbie Hancock, Bootsy Collins, the late Geri Allen and countless others. He brings these experiences “to the table” on the new album which also explores many genres from Jazz, Funk, Rock, Soul and more,  clearly reflecting  his multi-faceted career.

 

 

I’ve been a fan of his playing and music for many years going back to the mid-1970’s while first hearing him play with Griot Galaxy at the famed Cobb’s Corner, on Cass and Willis. I was struck by his distinctive powerful sound that  continues to define his unique style.

 

 

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Recently I had a chance to talk with Dave about his new album which is, in my opinion, pure musical perfection. The excellent musicianship from all the players is evident throughout the release. Performing with his current band and some longtime collaborators also made for a powerful and tight unit.

 

 

With Dave as the album’s producer, The production values were very high…and that coupled with the opportunity to work with the esteemed Jazz label Blue Note, gave the album a very polished, and professional sound.

 

 

The new album contains mostly Dave’s original compositions as well as covers of the White Stripes “Seven Nation Army”, Parliament-Funkadelic’s “Atomic Dog”, a song made famous by legendary French singer Johnny Halladay (who Dave worked and toured with for many years) entitled Que Je T’aime.  One of the originals that stands out is “Paris Rain” which is a beautiful string-enhanced ballad that pays tribute to one of his favorite cities.

 

 

McMurray not only plays soprano and tenor saxophones but also keyboards, percussion, bass clarinet, electronic programming, his bandmates include Ibrahim Jones on Bass, Ron Otis and Jeff Canady on drums, and special guest Maurice (“Pirahnahead”) Herd/Soulchestra on String Arrangements.

 

 

The album is a mirror of Detroit’s musical legacy as one of the great music capitols of the world. His songs “Bop City D”, and “Detroit Theme/Detroit 3″ pays homage to the Detroit sound. “Every time I hear an instrumentalist from Detroit play, it feels like they are singing. I don’t care if it’s Yusef Lateef, James Carter or Kenny Garrett. All of those saxophonists incorporated incredible technique too. But they had this singing quality in their playing. I think people hear that and connect with that aspect of it,” McMurray says

 

 

 

 

 

Detroit Public Radio mainstay, Judy Adams, is a pianist, composer and musicologist who hosts a Jazz and contemporary music show on CJAM 99.1FM and guest hosts on WRCJ 90.9FM. She made her mark at WDET 101.9FM (NPR), where she was Director of Programming and daily on-air music host for more than 30 years.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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