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Biography of Momentito



Ian East - Saxophones
David Beebee - Piano
Chris Higginbottom - Drums
Robin Mullarkey - Bass

Momentito features ten superb tracks of original compositions taking the listener on a musical voyage with angular grooves and upbeat funk, melancholy ballads and gentle waltzes through to swaying pseudo-rock feels, featuring the quartet’s mature soloing skills and highly developed sense of texture and form.

The Ian East/David Beebee band is a London based quartet performing original compositions as well as original arrangements of folk and jazz standards. Ian East, saxophonist/flautist was the runner-up in the Perrier Young Musician of the Year. He has worked with Gary Crosby’s Tomorrows warriors, Steve Melling’s Quartet and Tim Whitehead Sextet to name a few. The latter says of Ian’s playing, ‘Ian plays fewer notes than many of his contemporaries yet there’s more of him in those few notes.’ Pianist David Beebee is a prolific composer with widespread experience as a salsa and funk bass player, as well as a pianist who is ‘brimming over with jazz’, as Crescendo & Jazz Music wrote of him.

Expressing themselves within a jazz framework, to explore the relationships between compostion and improvisation, they draw upon a diverse array of influences and sauces from contemporary jazz, through to classical and world music. Joined by the award-winning drummer Chris Higginbottom and an amazing young bassist and Leed’s College of Music Professor, Robin Mullarkey, Momentito is a documentation and expression of their collaborative efforts over the last three years. They have done two national tours sponsored by the Art’s Council in the last three years and play regularly.

Saxophonist/flautist IAN EAST the 1999 Perrier Young Jazz Musician of the Year finalist has worked with Steve Melling's Quartet at Ronnie Scott's London, Tim Whitehead's Sight Reading Mothers, the Patrick Naylor Quartet and runs a jazz quartet GROUNDWORK, a balkan style brass band EASTERN FANTASY featuring Chris Batchelor ,co leads Momentito with David Beebee & can often be seen around London in other varied jazz and related music settings. He is also actively involved in jazz education, running the jazz workshops at the Blackheath Conservatoire and performing with Eddie Parker's IMPRO. He also spent five years performing for Live Music Now.

"'East on tenor is fluent and passionate" - Tony Hall, Jazz Express.

"…our long range tip for the top…" - Jack Massarick, Evening Standard.

"East's tenor playing is peculiarly reminiscent of his soprano playing & he uses both to good advantage." - Brian Morton, Jazzwise.


Review of David Beebee's GAYA in Jazzwise Magazine, May 2002 Recommended ****

It's always exciting to come across a major new talent, and especially so if its homegrown. Believe me, David Beebee who's 35 years old, is brilliant. He's a composer, arranger, pianist and fretless bass guitarist and his scores here for a nine or 10-piece ensemble are world-class. According to his short sleeve notes, all the music here was inspired by an early 90s trip to India, Tibet and the Himalyas. But, to my ears, there's a lot of African influence here and some strong Cuban grooves. Ashamed to say I'd only heard of one of the excellent musicians - the tenor/soprano player Ian Price, who made a big impression on me two years ago on the Beeboss labels first release, Momentito (bbcd101) a quirky off-the-wall quartet effort. But every member deserves a namecheck for their band feel and the excellent solo spots. The line-up is Gareth Lockrane (flute, alto flute, piccolo), Sam Mayne or Tony Woods (alto), Dave Priseman (trumpet, flugelhorn), Barnaby Dickenson or Trevor Mires (trombone), Patrick Naylor (electric guitar), Milo Fell (drums) and Robert Millett (percussion). The opening track (Lentil Fatigue) is probably the most conventional, but, even then, Beebees voicing gives it that extra something. From then on, it gets deeper and more individualistic, with the title tune, Gaya, possibly the album highlight. All the solos on every track are played with passion and the bands hard swinging feel occasionally owes something to the great early Gillespie big bands, with Milletts percussion a real stimulant. Beebee's label is dedicated to new British Jazz. You can access it on www.beebossrecords.co.uk .It was a great temptation not to give this exciting album 5 stars. So well save that rating for the follow-up, the scores for which are already written! A blazing CD you'll play again and again. Tony Hall

MOMENTITO by saxophonist IAN EAST and pianist DAVID BEEBEE with Robin Mullarkey and Chris Higginbottom on basses and drums is an extremely well integrated group and their themes are frequently haunting and always original. Fragmential Lamential is a good example, lyrical and intense ... bands like this show just what a farse the Young Jazz Musician of the Year Competition is, with it’s ‘fastest gun’ aesthitic that was stale 30 years ago MUSICIAN - December 1999

JAZZ EXPRESS CD OF THE WEEK British recording debuts have seldon sounded so impressive. The confidence and maturity in the collective improvisations by these four young players is quite remarkable and the music covers so many boundaries. East (on tenor, soprano and flute) is fluent and passionate, pianist Beebee mixes classical, gospel, jazz and funk with authority and swing and the bass-drums team of Robin Mullarkey and the Tony Williamsish Chris Higginbotham is equally strong. TONY HALL

[This] album, by four complete unknowns, is our long-range tip for the top. It’s an attractive collection of original music by green talents who could flower in any direction. Pianist David Beebee and saxist Ian East work intuitively well together and take raw yet shapely solos, while Chris Higginbottoms drumming has the smoth clarity that Tony Williams used to demonstrate. JACK MASSARIK CD CHOICE in the EVENING STANDARD

East and Beebee - supported by Mullarkey and Higginbottom - tackle some interesting charts on this disc. East’s airy tenor saxophone is particularly reminiscent of his soprano playing, and he uses both instruments to good advantage. The threat implied in “cross rhythm mayhem” never occurs, but it makes you aware of how hard the bass and drums have to work to steady the sound. Nearly everything succeeds and the group sounds good. “Picasso’s Pipe” has an attractive theme which breaks down into interesting pulse-fed solos. Only the piano vamp in “Lump”, during which Higginbottam stokes up his kit, is a little unfocused, and “Momentito” is strangely attenuated without appearing to be ironic. But if it were possible to award an additional half star, I’d give it unhesitatingly. BRIAN MORTON in JAZZWISE October 99

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