When composer Rob Mosher rounded the bend into Polebridge, Montana and caught sight of the old saloon piano sitting derelict behind the local mercantile, his imagination soared. So much so that he sprinted straight over to the out-of-tune upright and began penning the piece that opens his lush new chamber-jazz album, Polebridge.
The town of Polebridge, curiously like the piano itself, has a population of 88. Life hearkens back to the rough-hewn charm of pioneering days in the early 1900s. Locals live off the land, make their own culture and keep things simple. On a deeply quiet night in this frontier town, you just might find yourself hearing things; and if you happen to be gifted young composer Rob Mosher, that could sound like the music Schumann and Prokofiev might play were you to find them, drunk as can be, side-by-side on the bench of a saloon piano in the wild west.
Storytime – The Tortoise, their debut CD, is a lushly scored musical odyssey that contains echoes of Wayne Shorter, Gil Evans, Kurt Weill, Darius Milhaud, Debussy and Bach, reflecting Mosher’s embrace of a wide range of influences which have coalesced to create his singularly independent compositional voice. The CD traverses many musical landscapes — all held together by Mosher’s multi-faceted orchestration and ingenious use of instrumentation (saxophones, oboe, English horn, clarinets, flute, trumpet, French horn, trombone, electric and acoustic guitar, plus bass and drums).
31 Chorales is evidence of what happens when an award-winning composer and soprano saxophonist committed himself to the creative challenge of a lifetime: to write 31 Bach-style chorales in 31 days in celebration of his 31st birthday.
Inspired by J.S. Bach and containing a variety of consonance and dissonance, the album balances 31 instrumental chorales and 5 chamber pieces for soprano sax, trumpet, bass clarinet and tuba. Funds were raised using Kickstarter’s crowd-funding model.