Gregg Belisle-Chi

October 16th, 2014

JAzz photography by Daniel Sheehan

Opening up at the Chapel Performance Space for John Seman’s Lil Coop Quintet last Saturday night at the 2014 Earshot Jazz Festival was Guitarist Gregg Belisle-Chi and vocalist Chelsea Crabtree who mine the intersections of composition and improvisation with dark, rich guitar work and pristine vocals.

The marriage of improvisation and composition in jazz has been tumultuous, especially in the technological age. But guitarist Belisle-Chi looks to reinvigorate this relationship. He sees improvisation and composition not as disparate entities at odds with one another, but two studies that serve each other – a view that is reflected in Belisle-Chi’s dark and rich fret-board wanderings.

Recordings from the Belisle-Chi curated Racer Session last March exist in beautiful and thought-provoking ambiguity: what seems structured is loose and free, improvisation is focused and informed. The future of Belisle-Chi’s music is one of exploration into the dark, liminal spaces between composition and improvisation, and even the earliest fruits of this adventure are thoughtful and impacting.

Here is a link to the 2014 Earshot Jazz Festival Schedule

JAzz photography by Daniel Sheehan


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