Kwalikum Secondary School graduate Johannes Wallmann will release a new jazz album next month.
A self-described product of the school’s “wonderful jazz program,” Wallmann has made a career as an international jazz musician, and directs the jazz program at the University of Wisconsin.
His ninth album, Elegy for an Undiscovered Species will be released on June 25, 2021, and will feature international trumpet star and Nanaimo native Ingrid Jensen.
Elegy for an Undiscovered Species’s 19-piece ensemble is fronted by two New Yorkers, trumpeter Jensen and tenor saxophonist Dayna Stephens. Both Jensen and Stephens have been longtime key contributors to previous Wallmann albums.
Jensen and Wallmann share musical roots on Vancouver Island and Wallmann first met Stephens when he moved from New York to Oakland, just as the saxophonist was making his move in the opposite direction.
The ensemble is rounded out by a 14-piece string orchestra of Wisconsin-based musicians, conducted by Michael Dolan. The album was recorded over two days at the Hamel Music Center in Madison directly following a live concert in late February 2020, just weeks prior to the COVID-19 shutdown.
“I was sweating bullets,” Wallmann recounts in a release. “China and Italy were already on lockdown, international travel shutdowns were increasing, and the virus was knocking on our door as well. We got very lucky to be able to have this one last opportunity to make music with joyful abandon before this awful year of no live music.”
Elegy for an Undiscovered Species will be available as a digital download at www.shiftingparadigmrecords.com.
– NEWS Staff, submitted