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Bop Culture was formed in the spring of 2000 with the advent of our steady Sunday night gig at the Firefly Club in Ann Arbor, Michigan. There, we've been able to explore original compositions and put our own spin on the standards and jazz tunes we love to play.
Blues for the Morning Rush Hour is one of Mark's tunes. it was written shortly after he moved from New York City and realized that traffic in Detroit could sometimes be just as bad. The treatments of Falling in Love with Love, You & the Night & the Music, and Tangerine are all products of letting the chips fall where they may on the gig. The band's unique chemistry and connection are strongly evident throughout these standards.
Paul suggested once that Mark write a piece featuring a bass/trumpet melody line. The original idea for Mark's Mood was a bop-type line, but the title suggests why it didn't turn out that way. Since Rick is an authority on the music of Thelonious Monk, we decided to include Thelonious' seldom played tune We See in this program. Rick's 'Till I Get There was written for his wife, Deborah. Augmented major seventh chords were the starting point that inspired this beautiful composition.
The inclusion of the Miles Davis/Bill Evans classic Blue in Green represents the many nights Mark and Rick have spent performing as a duo. This relationship has played an important part in defining the sound of Bop Culture.The session ends with Pinocchio, written by Wayne Shorter. Check out Pinocchio's "nose" on this track!
The experience we've gained from two years on the Firefly bandstand has freed us to develop as individual musicians and as a unit. The music on this recording represents that evolution and reflects the passion and musical intensity that is Bop Culture.