New York's Andrew D'Angelo, one of the most exciting and adventurous reedists working today, suffered a seizure while driving in Brooklyn last week and was hospitalized. Tests revealed a large brain tumor. His doctors don't think it's cancerous, though they won't know for sure till they perform a biopsy sometime in the next few weeks.
D'Angelo first made a splash in the early 90s with Human Feel, a quartet with guitarist Kurt Rosenwinkle, reedist Chris Speed, and drummer Jim Black that pushed postbop into thrillingly aggressive, harmonically ambiguous spaces. Though D'Angelo has proved his jazz bona fides with his fluent, hard-swinging work in the Matt Wilson Quartet, elsewhere he's consistently demonstrated nonchalant flexibility and disdain for tidy categories, blurring the lines between edgy postbop and noise rock--especially in Morthana, his collaboration with the Norwegian group Moha. Last year Human Feel regrouped and released Galore (Skirl), a dynamic, explosive reminder of how prophetic the combo was in its original incarnation. And last week D'Angelo put out a new trio album with Black and bassist Trevor Dunn called Skadra Degis, also on Skirl.
Like many musicians, D'Angelo lacks health insurance, so he's quietly soliciting financial support to help defray the costs of his upcoming brain surgery. Donations can be sent via PayPal to donate [at] andrewdangelo [dot] com. He's blogging about his hospital experiences with characteristic black humor here. Here's to a speedy recovery.
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