New York Times:
“Mr. Marcus is probably the most inventive bass clarinetist working in straight-ahead jazz today…[and] lives in Baltimore, where he is a guiding light on the city’s jazz scene who doubles as an activist and organizer.”
“Marcus…is clearly what the jazz polls call a “rising star” – as a composer-arranger and as a bass clarinetist. His solos are highlights of this album. In Marcus’ hands, the bass clarinet is no longer a specialty instrument. Its unique timbral richness becomes incisive, fully capable of forceful expression.”
The Washington Post:
“Listeners won’t have any trouble recognizing Marcus’s compelling gifts for composing and arranging.”
“Baltimore-based Todd Marcus, the virtuoso bass clarinetist and composer, is a master of straight-ahead jazz.”
A Week of Giving Thanks
Each concert this week benefits a charity of the artists' choosing!
Todd Marcus - bass clarinet & clarinet
Russell Kirk - alto saxophone
Harry Appelman - piano
Eric Wheeler - bass
Eric Kennedy - drums
Bass clarinetist/composer Todd Marcus is one of the few jazz artists worldwide to focus their work primarily on the bass clarinet. Marcus’ straight-ahead playing has carved out a unique voice for the instrument in modern jazz. His music swings hard with both a fiery and introspective intensity but also maintains a strong lyrical sensibility and the New York Times writes, “Mr. Marcus is probably the most inventive bass clarinetist working in straight-ahead jazz today…[and] lives in Baltimore, where he is a guiding light on the city’s jazz scene who doubles as an activist and organizer.”
The Washington Post writes, “Listeners won’t have any trouble recognizing Marcus’s compelling gifts for composing and arranging.” JazzTimes magazine adds, “In Marcus’ hands, the bass clarinet is no longer a specialty instrument. Its unique timbral richness becomes incisive, fully capable of forceful expression.”
Self-taught in jazz theory and composition, Marcus’ compositions draw largely on straight-ahead jazz and classical influences but over recent years have also increasingly explored the Middle-Eastern sounds from his Egyptian-American heritage. He has worked with other jazz artists such as Gary Bartz, Bennie Maupin, Don Byron, Larry Willis, Odean Pope, Gary Thomas, Joel Frahm, Tim Warfield, Ralph Peterson, Warren Wolf, Sean Jones, Xavier Davis, George Colligan, and Orrin Evans.
Marcus balances his music career by running Intersection of Change, a nonprofit addressing poverty-related issues in his Baltimore neighborhood. The organization runs a community arts program for children & adults, a recovery program for women overcoming drug addiction, an urban farm, and has achieved significant community revitalization by renovating abandoned buildings and vacant lots.
Streaming cost is $15 -- $5 will go to Intersection of Change
Intersection of Change (www.intersectionofchange.org) is a community-based nonprofit focused on community development in West Baltimore. The organization's Martha's Place, Jubilee Arts, and Strength to Love II programs are dedicated to enriching the economic, social, and spiritual lives of those dealing with poverty-related issues in the Sandtown-Winchester and surrounding communities.
Work to date has resulted in significant neighborhood revitalization of the 1900 and 2000 blocks of Pennsylvania Avenue through the full renovation of six previously vacant and dilapidated buildings, the transformation of 18 vacant lots into community green spaces and meditative gardens, creation of three dozen neighborhood murals, and conversion of 1.5 acres of vacant lots into an urban farm.