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University of Iowa News Release

April 14, 2005

UI Jazz Repertory Ensemble Features Bassist Anthony Cox April 30

The Jazz Repertory Ensemble from the University of Iowa School of Music will feature Anthony Cox, a versatile and accomplished acoustic/electric bass player who is an adjunct member of the UI jazz faculty, on a free concert at 8 p.m. Saturday, April 30 in Clapp Recital Hall on the UI campus.

The Jazz Repertory Ensemble (JRE) is one of two large jazz ensembles in the UI School of Music. Based on the standard big-band instrumentation, JRE has full sections of reed, brass and rhythm instruments. The director is Brent Sandy from the jazz-area faculty in the UI School of Music.

"JRE is made up of undergraduate and graduate students whose goal is to re-interpret and perform works of various styles, written and/or arranged for big band from 1930 to the present," Sandy said. "From Basie and Ellington to writers of today, from swing to samba, JRE covers, studies and reinterprets."

The concert program features compositions and arrangements by Thad Jones, including "All of Me," "Groove Merchant" and "Don't Git Sassy." A portion of the program will also feature vocalist Kathy Ruestow, a senior in the School of Music, singing pieces arranged for the Count Basie Orchestra for the great jazz singers Ella Fitzgerald -- "I'm Beginning To see The Light" and "Honeysuckle Rose" -- and Dianne Schurr -- "Come Rain or Come Shine."

The closing set will feature Cox in four pieces: "Slinky" by UI alumnus Chris Merz, now the director of jazz studies at the University of Northern Iowa; "St. Louis Blues" by W.C. Handy, as arranged by Oliver Nelson; Bob Brookmeyer's arrangement of "Willow Weep For Me"; and Thad Jones' "Three and One."

From a home base in the Twin Cities, Cox has taught, performed and recorded around the world. He plays traditional jazz as well as post-bop and more avant-garde styles, and performs equally well on upright string bass, string electric bass and Spanish acoustic bass. He has recorded with Dewey Redman, Geri Allen, Arthur Blythe, Mike Cain, Uri Caine and many others. He has recordings on several labels.

Ron Wynne described Cox in All Music Guides as "a fine bassist, versatile enough to work in any style effectively. He has recorded in various groups, recently issued his own recording. Cox does not identify with the 'young lion' hard bop movement, nor is he part of instrumental pop or fusion set. Rather he shifts between inspired straight jazz and more ambitious rock-tinged pieces."

An avid educator, Cox has held residencies at schools and arts agencies around the world, including in Hamburg, Germany; at the Knitting Factory and Riverside Church in New York; and the Twin Cities Jazz Society's "Jazz from J-Z" Music Series in St. Paul. He was curator of the Music Series at the Illusion Theatre in Minneapolis and is a board member of Headwaters Music, a performance organization for new music located in Minneapolis.

He has presented master classes and clinics in Bozeman, Mont., Halifax, Nova Scotia and Berlin, and at many schools and colleges in between.

Sandy, who joined the jazz faculty in 2000, is a jazz trumpet and flugelhorn performer, teacher and clinician. Sandy performs regularly with local and regional jazz groups including the OddBar Trio, the Grismore Scea Group and Equilateral. As a former member of the Orquesta Alto Maiz and Oddbar he has made seven CDs, toured Europe in 1998 and twice been featured on "Jazzset with Branford Marsalis" on National Public Radio. He is an educational specialist/clinician for Conn/Selmer and a Conn Vintage One trumpet and flugelhorn artist.

The School of Music is part of the Division of Performing Arts in the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

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STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa Arts Center Relations, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 351, Iowa City, IA 52242-2500.

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