At age 75, Jack DeJohnette is the senior member of Hudson, an all-star quartet named for the place where its members live… the Hudson Valley in Upstate New York.
DeJohnette was drawn to the area decades ago by fellow musicians, members of the Paul Butterfield Blues Band who urged him to visit Woodstock.
"They convinced us to come up and visit. We really liked the place and we thought it would be a great place to raise our children. And 43 years later, you know, it still is a great place for creativity, to have peace of mind and just to commune with nature,"explains the National Endowment for the Arts Jazz Master, drummer and composer.
For DeJohnette and his cohorts, guitarist John Scofield, keyboardist John Medeski and bassist Larry Grenadier, the serenity of the Hudson Valley provides relief from a busy, international touring schedule. For the band's debut recording, their mutual home also provided inspiration.
"The other aspect of Hudson and the concept of this album was the Woodstock Festival which was home to [artists including] Jimmy Hendrix and The Band. We thought it would be great to have the concept be originals and cover tunes. Tunes that I don’t think many jazz musicians have ever covered. But they resonated with us, so we’re having a ball! Each night is different. The band is getting stronger and stronger with each concert," says DeJohnette.
Jimi Hendrix's "Wait Until Tomorrow," and the Band's "Up On Cripple Creek" are among the Woodstock classics you can expect to hear re-imagined by DeJohnette and his quartet.
Hudson performs Saturday, October 21st at the Mondavi Center in Davis.