Jacob Duncan, John Goldsby and Jason Tiemann Trio
In the late 1800’s, a tide of German immigrants flooded the bustling city of Louisville, Kentucky. The Germans, mostly skilled laborers—carpenters, blacksmiths and tradesmen—went in search of new opportunities. Families with names like Goss, Kunz, Gnaedinger and Metz settled in an area not far from the Ohio river that came to be known as “Germantown.” This cultural influence is still evident with restaurant names like the Gasthaus, Huelsman’s and a friendly neighborhood meeting place and jazz club called The Nachbar.
Jump to February 27, 2008: Bassist John Goldsby, a Louisville native who currently resides in Germany, returns to Louisville’s Germantown to team up with local powerhouse jazz musicians Jacob Duncan (alto) and Jason Tiemann (drums). The performance is captured on the new CD release: Live at the Nachbar [Bass Lion].
The gourmet set of modern jazz sounds includes two Goldsby originals: “Poli Wonk” and “Every Other.” In this U.S. election year, Poli Wonk is Goldsby’s musical plea to political talking heads (the Poli Wonks themselves) to calm down, focus on the issues, and feel the funk. “Every Other” is an Ornette-ish take on a popular jazz standard. Can you hear it?
Duncan also contributes a pair of contrasting originals: “It’s Alright to Dream,” a pop hit without words (yet) and “Nached Up,” a jam-band slammer that teeters between odd-meter gymnastics and free funk á la Miles. The term “nached up” might also refer to one’s state of mind after a long night enjoying the Nachbar and it’s worldly delights.
Other gems found in this live portrait include seldom-heard standards such as: “U.M.M.G.” (Upper Manhattan Medical Group) and “A Flower Is A Lovesome Thing” by Billy Strayhorn, a definitive rendering of Thelonius Monk’s “Mysterioso,” and the haunting re-working of Randy Newman’s “In Germany Before the War.”
Goldsby moved to Cologne, Germany in 1994 after a long stint in New York City. Best known for his work on the New York jazz scene, he got his start in jazz clubs in Louisville, playing with local legends like Helen Humes, Jimmy Raney and Jamey Aebersold. After moving to New York he worked with many jazz legends, including Benny Goodman, Lionel Hampton and George Benson. Goldsby currently holds the bass chair with the Grammy award-winning WDR Big Band in Cologne.
Goldsby’s chemistry with alto saxophonist Jacob Duncan and drummer Jason Tiemann developed while playing live concerts in the past year at The Nachbar. “I think these guys are fantastic—I love making groovy, cutting-edge music with them,” Goldsby says.
Jacob Duncan balances a spiritual, intuitive inclination with a keen, educated mind; his ensemble playing confident and solid, his soloing full of risks and rewards. Duncan is well-known as the founder of the Liberation Prophecy, and also for his sideman work with artists such as Aretha Franklin, Norah Jones, and the Violent Femmes.
Jason Tiemann also plays with the Liberation Prophecy, in addition to being a constantly in-demand sideman for artists like Ben Monder, Jean Michel Pilc, Joanne Brackeen and Bob Minzter. Tiemann is a musician’s drummer—listening, checking, pushing and supporting while he plays—using his rare instincts to make the music happen.