The extrovert trumpeter returns to town a scant two weeks after his high-flying jazz-fest appearance with Dizzy Gillespie--and if you heard him then, you don't need much more from me by way of recommendation. Faddis is something of a throwback, capable of recasting the horn in its historical role as an instrument of raw power; like Louis Armstrong, Roy Eldridge, Cat Anderson, and Maynard Ferguson, Faddis is the high-note trumpet man of his generation. But like Gillespie (his idol and mentor), Faddis also boasts the mind and technique to construct an intricate, busily decorative statement when the time is right. For some time now, those statements could easily have been mistaken for the young Gillespie's, and indeed, that (along with a certain artistic immaturity) was the major knock on Faddis. But the onetime wunderkind--he worked with Mingus while still a teenager, and led the Thad Jones-Mel Lewis trumpet section a little later--is now 36; he's spent the last couple years withdrawing from Gillespie's shadow, and, as proved by his newly released album Into the Faddisphere, he can be as extraordinarily forceful playing Jon Faddis as he was in the role of Diz Jr. For sheer excitement, no trumpeter (and few other instrumentalists) can top him: he can literally make you forget you were breathing. His quartet includes a terrific new pianist, Renee Rosnes. Tonight through, Sunday, Joe Segal's Jazz Showcase, Blackstone Hotel, 636 S. Michigan; 427-4300.
Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): photo/Marco Glaviano.