“Oz Live” is heavy instrumental funk fusion with Oz and his rotating trio, featuring Reggie Washington, James Genus, Keith Carlock ,and Anton Fig. Recorded live at the Bitter End in N.Y.C. during four nights in May and June 2002. The bonus track features Oz, Will Lee and Anton Fig doing 'Cissy Strut' by The Meters, recorded live to DAT.
After playing for a couple of years my good friend Mark Shulman who’s a great NY guitarist kind of kicked my ass to put out a record. I used to record at the bitter end live to DAT just to hear the gigs. The sound in the room and the vibe was so great that I decided to record a live album because I didn’t think that vibe could be captured in the studio. I recorded four nights to adat and picked the best bits. Will joined the band after recording so the last track is a bonus track with him which is live to DAT.
On the album there’s some great interplay between you guys. How long have you been playing the material?
I’ve been playing the songs for at least two years so they were pretty ripe.
You cover a lot of ground with your trio, shifting from rhythm to lead. Has that developed from playing in a trio setting?
Yes. Playing with a trio requires you to write in a certain way so that it sounds right. Playing live is where it really comes together. I would never record a record before a song has been around and played live for a while. I don’t really think about it but I go for what I hear but basically you have to write a certain way for a trio.
How do approach composing? Some of your stuff is jammy but you also have composed parts.
What I do is usually is I find a 2 or 4 bar groove. A vamp. Then I start writing stuff around it. If you listen to the record and the next one you’ll hear that it all starts from the groove. It’s a bit like a standard. There’s a melody written around the vamp and after the head we throw in the solos. I usually solo over the vamp. I prefer with a trio not to play over to many changes because I find that it lacks definition. The other thing is that playing over a static chord or a vamp you can really color it and it’s very open.
released September 26, 2006
Oz Noy - guitar
Reggie Washington, James Genus, Will Lee, bass;
Keith Carlock, Anton Fig, drums.