About the Album
Big Picture Holiday: Shimmer and Melt is the powerful new weapon in the musical arsenal of saxophonist and bandleader Avram Fefer. With influences ranging from Herbie Hancock, Miles Davis, and Ornette Coleman to Afrobeat, Ethiopian, and Moroccan music, Shimmer and Melt features a dark and funky brilliance that shines forth from the very first notes. It is a musical globetrotter’s fresh take on dirty late-night street jazz –-- sophisticated, sly, and provocative… full of neon lights, shooting stars, and fleeting innuendo.
About the Band
If you haven’t heard anything quite like this before, do not be alarmed. The six members of Big Picture Holiday bring to the table a wealth of musical soul and expertise that combine to create a fresh and dynamic sound that is all their own.
Saxophonist and bandleader Avram Fefer spent his formative years jamming away the wee hours in Boston with Roy Hargrove, John Medeski, and Jeff Parker. He made his professional debut playing with Archie Shepp, the Last Poets, and Tony Allen, and has shared the stage with William Parker, Marc Ribot, Saul Williams, and Vernon Reid. He has performed in over twenty countries, played on 30 albums, and has contributed music to numerous theater, film, and TV productions.
When he assembled Big Picture Holiday, Avram knew that he wanted a line-up that easily crossed genres, cultures, and bar-lines. He also knew that each member had to have a strong and distinctive individual voice, no matter his musical role at any given moment. With guitarists Kenny Wessel and Dave Phelps, keyboard player Alexis Marcelo, bassist extraordinaire Jason DiMatteo, and drummer Chris Eddleton, Avram achieved that exact goal.
Collectively, the musicians of BPH have played with Ornette Coleman’s Primetime, John Lurie, John Medeski, N'Dea Davenport, Blackthought, Valerie June, Donald Fagan, Yusef Lateef, the New York Philharmonic, Pharoahe Monch, Jean Grae, Steve Bernstein, Debbie Harry, Badal Roy, Tamar Kali, Ethan Iverson, Cyro Batista, Hassan Hakmoun, and many others. They have been featured on David Letterman, Conan O’Brian, The Tonight Show, Austin City Limits, and at numerous festivals around the world.
Big Picture Holiday creates a seductive blend of original music that defies easy categorization. Placing the saxophone in the center of a lush sonic universe and surrounding it with vibrant musical voices, the band creates a sound that swirls and shines, shimmers and melts. With their catchy melodies, deep grooves, layers of interlocking counter-lines, and solos that tell a story, Big Picture Holiday manages to stake out that hard-won musical territory that is simple and sophisticated, sexy and intelligent.