Marty Ehrlich Duende Winds featuring Marty Ehrlich, saxophones and clarinets, Nicole Mitchell, flute, Tomeka Reid, cello and Sara Shoenbeck, bassoon, at Music & Dance Recital Hall, Hampshire College, Amherst, MA.
“Marty Ehrlich has long been one of the premiere songbirds of new music,” writes Ed Hazell. “He writes strong melodies and his best solos have the lyrical flow of song, his tone the shine and vibrato of the human voice.”
Marty Ehrlich is celebrating forty years in the nexus of creative music centered in New York City. He began his musical career in St. Louis, Missouri while in high school, performing and recording with the Human Arts Ensemble. He graduated from the New England Conservatory of Music with honors in 1977, where his teachers included George Russell, Jaki Byard, Joseph Allard, and Gunther Schuller.
Since that time, he has made 25 recordings of his compositions for ensembles ranging in size from duo to jazz orchestra, touring throughout America and Europe. These groups include his Dark Woods Ensemble, Traveler’s Tales Group, Rites Quartet, and the Marty Ehrlich Sextet. In 2014 New World Records released, A Trumpet in the Morning, a Jazz Orchestra recording of five long-form compositions by Ehrlich.
As a multi-instrumentalist passionate about improvisation and interpretation, Ehrlich has performed with a who’s who of contemporary composers including Muhal Richard Abrams, Ray Anderson, Steven Bernstein, Anthony Braxton, John Carter, Andrew Cyrille, Jack DeJohnette, Anthony Davis, Mark Dresser, Peter Erskine, Michael Formanek, Don Grolnick, Julius Hemphill, Andrew Hill, Wayne Horvitz, Leroy Jenkins, Oliver Lake, Myra Melford, James Newton, Mario Pavone, Bobby Previte, Wadada Leo Smith, and John Zorn. He appears on more than 100 recordings with these and other composers.
Ehrlich has performed with the Chicago Symphony, the BBC Symphony, the New York City Opera, Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Chamber Music Northwest, and other classical ensembles. He has worked with the Jose Limón and Bill T. Jones dance companies, among others. He is currently presenting a concert program for twelve musicians entitled “Julius Hemphill: A Composer Portrait.” He is Professor of Jazz and Contemporary Music at Hampshire College.