It’s DONE!!   In their 1st recording since the twice Grammy nominated “River Runs”, the Jazz Surge, having shed the orchestral trappings characterizing the prior ambitious work, would appear to have returned to a more standard jazz big band outing. “Whispers”, however, is anything but standard big band fare!!

This project expands upon Owen’s interest in American folk and roots music – leaning heavily on the evocative violin of Sara Caswell, the luminescent harmonica of Gregoire Maret, an array of acoustic guitars deftly played by Corey Christiansen, and even the occasional burst of color from the accordion and hammered dulcimer played by Owen himself.  Randy Brecker, last appearing with the Surge on “A Comet’s Tail”, returns with a blistering solo on “Into the Blue” as well as a rollicking turn on “Gunslingers” – a somewhat otherwordly, Blakey-esque minor blues.

As with River Runs, “Whispers” was conceived loosely as a single entity – a suite of 7 pieces linked by a somewhat ethereal vision and examination of the American tradition & lifestyle. . . . . . . its values, landmarks, folklore, heroes, and myths.   Associating quotes from authors Stephen King, Larry McMurtry, and Cormac McCarthy.  Owen’s music displays a clear affinity for the local color, wry sense of humor, unique personalities, strong sense of place, and disarmingly unsentimental honesty these authors are noted for.   

See the online Store for opportunities to pre-order and get an mp3 track of “Warped Cowboy” delivered IMMEDIATELY!! 

An incredibly enthusiastic response greeted the Jazz Surge’s debut of many of the works from its new recording project in front of an audience filled with prominent jazz composers – including NEA Jazz Master, Chick Corea. Guesting with the band were Randy Brecker and Gregoire Maret who will also be featured on the upcoming recording.

Wow!! Billy Childs, John Hollenbeck, Maria Schneider, Rufus Reid all presenting artist talks with over 180 registered from over 35 States and 8 Countries. The music was off the charts. The opportunity to reunite with old friends while connecting with many new, talented writers – even better!!

The International Society for Jazz Arrangers & Composers announced its formation and launched its website. Chuck is serving as its founding president – joined by founding VPs Dave Stamps & Brian Coyle and a very prestigious Board. The Society also announced the return of the Jazz Composers’ Symposium to be held at USF in May of 2017.