Jeff Parker, Chris Lopes, and Chad Taylor | Hungry Brain | Jazz | Chicago Reader

Jeff Parker, Chris Lopes, and Chad Taylor Recommended Soundboard

When: Sun., Nov. 13, 10 p.m. 2011

Jeff Parker is arguably the most exciting and thoughtful jazz guitarist of the past two decades, a masterful free improviser who's also fluent in everything from postbop to postrock. What's not arguable is that no jazz guitarist of his skill, notoriety, and acclaim has made fewer records as a leader during those years—Parker has a total of two, excluding a few collaborations. In his liner notes for the excellent 2003 trio album Like-Coping (Delmark), he explains his reluctance to make recordings with his name slapped on the front: "I have always felt that music-making is a communal gesture," he writes. Parker has played on dozens of records over the years where you can pick him out instantly, but his sound is always part of a larger whole. Even on Like-Coping his collaborators were crucial: both drummer Chad Taylor and bassist Chris Lopes (each of whom has a long musical history with the guitarist) contribute compositions and shape an ensemble-oriented sound that swings from postbop to lyrical ballads to spiky free jazz and beyond. This rarely convened trio is not only performing this weekend as part of the Hungry Brain's ongoing tenth-anniversary series but also entering the studio next week with engineer Ken Brown to make a long-overdue follow-up. —Peter Margasak Parker also plays a weekly Tuesday gig at Rodan with John Herndon and Joshua Abrams.

Price: $15 suggested donation

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