I listened to a lot of rock growing up. I continue to do so. So a lot of my music is about reconciling that... Throwing Lester Young and the Pixies into the same house and seeing if they can live together. Jeremy Udden
In true American reductionist fashion, the definition of roots music has been over-simplified, incorporating any distinctive musical form developed primarily in the United States. This huge sample covers everything from folk to blues to country music. It would be easy to label the Brooklyn-based ensemble Plainville as a roots or rock band based on its sound, but perhaps the group s roots are more conceptual than aural.
Jeremy Udden grew up in rural New England. His music is a tribute to the home that remains close to his heart. The saxophonist / composer has created an ensemble that reflects a unique amalgam of folk, rock and jazz music, these being the sounds surrounding Udden in his youth. The music on Plainville s new CD, If the Past Seems So Bright (Sunnyside, 2011), showcases the group s unique comingling of styles, which is unique, tuneful and boundlessly creative, while evoking images of Americana.
Udden has exhibited a wide range of musical interests in his performing career. After graduating from the New England Conservatory of Music, the saxophonist became a regular member of the Either Orchestra, an extremely eclectic, Boston-based large ensemble that regularly performs in diverse settings with musicians from all over the world. Udden s broad interest in musical genres and huge talent enabled him to merge seamlessly with ensembles playing rock, pop, jazz, avant-garde and even Ethiopian music. He has performed with the likes of Steve Lacy, Matt Wilson and Mulatu Astatke.
Plainville, which is named after the founder s home town in Massachusetts, was established as a vehicle for Udden s love of folk, rock and country music. Its music reflects the experience of being raised in small town U.S.A. These influences are revealed in tunes based on rock or folk harmonic frames with melodic statements using devices frequently used by vocalists, or more linear jazz artists. Many of the songs were composed on guitar or keyboard to achieve a more folk or rock feel.
Udden originally thought of Plainville as his singer-songwriter project with his saxophone as the lead vocalist. Once the group came together, the collective aspects of music making became much more important. Udden happily incorporated an amazing array of open-minded musicians into the band. Plainville has become an incredibly solid group that has proven itself playing alongside indie rock and jazz groups.