André Jaume

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Mainly known as a tenor player, French multi-instrumentalist André Jaume also excels on alto sax, flute, bass clarinet, and clarinet, his first instrument, and is one of the most emblematic figures of…
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Mainly known as a tenor player, French multi-instrumentalist André Jaume also excels on alto sax, flute, bass clarinet, and clarinet, his first instrument, and is one of the most emblematic figures of the French jazz scene. His warm and generous tone is his trademark and his career reflects his curiosity and open-mindedness. Classically trained, Jaume developed his interest for jazz going to dances where Sidney Bechet performed and listening to records. His interest quickly moved from Dixieland to more modern musicians, such as Charlie Parker, Duke Ellington, and John Coltrane. He attended the first French jazz school under the direction of Guy Longnon from 1966 to 1969. Social events of the late '60s and inroads made by free jazz encouraged him to find his own path rather than mimicking American artists. After playing with Barre Phillips in the early '70s, he created a duo with percussionist Gerard Siracusa, which soon evolved as a trio with the addition of Raymond Boni on guitar. Later, he joined Jeff Gilson's orchestra from 1976 to 1979. During that time, Jaume met saxophonist Joe McPhee at a festival in Nancy (France) and a long friendship ensued, punctuated by several albums, in particular Old Eyes & Mysteries and Oleo & a Future Retrospective. In the early '80s, Jaume put together an octet to fulfill his ambition to compose for string instruments. Through his association with McPhee, the saxophonist gave his first concerts in the United States in 1985. Although an already well-seasoned musician, Jaume seized this opportunity to write and ask Jimmy Giuffre to study arrangement and composition. Giuffre's positive response resulted in yet another fruitful collaboration with a string of concerts and recordings. It was also Giuffre who encouraged Jaume to resume playing the clarinet. In the '90s, Jaume entered a prolific and diverse period carrying on projects with Charlie Mariano, John Medeski, Charlie Haden, and Barry Altschul, as well as collaborations with musicians from Indonesia or Guinea. He also formed a working trio with guitarist Rémi Charmasson and Randy Kaye, Jimmy Giuffre's former drummer. Jaume retired from his faculty position at the Avignon Conservatory in 2001, hoping to focus entirely on his music.