The November Novella

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Winter is coming and so are some exciting changes in Batesland.

Greetings magnificent humans! It’s been a long while since I updated the old blog-a-roonie and I apologize for that. I sometimes get lost in living life and not caring to much about promoting myself or my music. I am planning on a full redesign of my website sometime in early 2018 and there are numerous activities afoot that will hopefully entice you to check in here and stay engaged with me as a musician and thinker of thinks.

Here are some exciting things that recently happened:

In the early summer Laura Caviani, Dave Schmalenberger and I gathered ourselves up over at Creation Audio in Minneapolis and recorded not one, but TWO albums worth of material. The first album became a Thelonious Monk tribute album called ‘Mysterious Thelonious’ and was released just a few weeks ago in a pair of exciting concerts where we collaborated with the stellar vocalist Karrin Allyson to celebrate 100 years of Monk. All in all it was a fantastic weekend of music making and I’m very proud of the work and sound of this new album. It is the first full album to be released where I’m using my Kent McLagan bass and I honestly have shed some tears over how beautiful the bass sounds in the studio. After a full year of only using this instrument I can tell things are changing for me as a player and I feel my creative voice is clearer than ever. Currently the album is available at shows and at CD Baby. Just click thru to listen or purchase!

In addition to all that Monk, we recorded a full disc of original material entitled ‘Confluences’! Laura writes engaging and wonderful music and this album will feature a full suite of five pieces inspired by the bard William Shakespeare. Additional material runs from poignant balladry to intense swing and a dash of funk. I feel this work showcases Laura’s range as a composer and improvisor in a fresh way. We certainly have been having a great time playing together as a trio! Come hear it for yourself at Crooner’s Lounge on Dec 6th. 2017 at the ‘Confluences’ CD release party. The ticket link is already up so go reserve your seats for that one!

Another big move for me is that I’ve been learning the Ableton Live software and taking a one day a week class at this magical little school in NE Mpls called Slam Academy! I have been interested in and listening to electronic music since the 90’s and I have messed around with Live for a long time. It was time to take a deep dive and learn how to record, manipulate, edit and design sounds on my own using this very innovative piece of software. Slam Academy is run by J. Anthony Allen and my friend James Patrick, along with a small group of intensely passionate and eccentric faculty. Slam Academy offers several different programs across all aspects of music production and DJ’ing as well as specialized programs for females and refugees. They are truly a modern marvel of small, community based education and I urge you to check them out! I will be posting new music I’m working on soon!

Here’s what’s happening gig-wise over the next couple of weeks:

Saturday Nov 11th   8:30pm   $10 (donation)   All Ages

Michael Shults group @ Saturday Night Jazz at the Black Dog 

Michael is the saxophone professor at UW Eau Claire and a monster musician and teacher. We’ll be playing a bunch of scintillating jazz repertoire both old and new. It’s sure to be a fun and spontaneous evening of great music!

Featuring                                                                                                                                                                 Michael Shults and Aaron Hedenstrom – saxophones, Javier Santiago – piano, Miguel Hurtado – drums, CB – bass

Friday Nov 17th   9pm   $10   All Ages

Atlantis Quartet in the Dunsmore Room @ Crooner’s

Atlantis Quartet has been working hard at life over the last 24 months. We have three kids age 2 and under in the extended family right now so our attention has been in nurturing those little ones. As with anything you love in life phases occur and so we’ve just rolled with those while taking our time to slowly build a new book of tunes for you all. We’ll be going into the studio early next year to record a new album and after that you’ll probably be seeing us on America’s Got Talent and other major independent jazz exposure vehicles. Hope you can join us (Brandon Wozniak, Zacc Harris, Pete Hennig and CB) for a special night at the Dunsmore Room!

Saturday Nov 18th   8:30pm   $10 (donation)   All Ages

Chris Bates Red 5(+2) @ Saturday nIght Jazz at the Black Dog

This year has been somewhat monumental for my septet Red 5. We’ve played four gigs at the Black Dog and that’s been a great move to keep the band active and allow me chances to develop compositional ideas from those live experiences. I’ve had the great fortune of having loyal bandmates in this project but booking this band never comes without a scheduling conflict and I’ve used 13 different musicians this year. The hallmark of this community is the astounding level of talent one can draw from in these situations. It’s been a great opportunity to discover new voices and make new friends in music – thank you to all who have played this year. I urge you to check out any of the people linked in this email and please come hear Red 5 at the Black Dog. We’ll be playing two full sets of my original compositions including the wryly titled ‘Higgs Boson-Ova‘, the elusive ‘Crop Circles‘, a brand new tune ‘Withinside‘ and all the faves from the New Hope record.

CB – basses, Thomas Nordlund – guitar, Davu Seru – drums, JC Sanford – trombone, Steve Kenny – trumpet        Chris Thomson and Pete Whitman – saxophones

Additional highlights in November:

Sunday Nov 19th – Connie Evingson, Dave Karr, Jon Weber and CB – Jazz at the Jungle   4 & 7:30pm

Monday Nov 20th – RED PLANET @ at the Black Dog  7-9pm

Wednesday Nov 22 – Stu Katz w/ Red Planet @ Vieux Carre  8pm

Th-Sa Nov 23-25 – Davina and the Vagabonds @ The Dakota – Three Days of Thanks

Thanks to you all for listening and supporting live music and quality artistic endeavors!

See you at the next show! – CB