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Updated: Jul 26, 2023

The JAZZ HOUSE Collective, directed by Nathan Eklund, is composed of nationally and internationally recognized jazz artists who also serve in the community as JAZZ HOUSE

faculty. Each year, the Collective features arrangements or compositions in tribute to one of jazz’s great luminaries. This year the Collective will be celebrating the music of Dexter Gordon who would have turned 100 this year. Nicknamed “Long Tall Dexter” because of his height (6’ 6”), Gordon was one of several horn players who came of age during the Big Band Era, but who would come to develop and define the Bebop Era, with its emphasis on small groups and improvisation by soloists. His saxophone sound was large and warm, continuing the tradition set by Lester Young but adding more creative exploration under the innovative influence of Charlie Parker. Gordon recorded nearly 100 albums as a leader during his long career, most notably for the Blue Note label, which also featured iconic covers that have become part of jazz history. Gordon died in 1990 at the age of 67 due to complications of emphysema.

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