Small Jazz Ensemble
Toronto-based and Winnipeg-born multiple award-winning bassist and composer Dave Young, is, without a doubt, one of Canada’s most valuable and beloved musical exports. Whether he’s performing as part of a classical symphony, or as an integral member of an iconic jazz trio (with the likes of the late Oscar Peterson), or leading any of his dynamic ensembles, Dave remains a total musician, with artistic soul in abundance. He first began studying the guitar and violin at age ten, but a turn of events at his first gig (a University dance band) compelled him to pick up the bass. Equally comfortable in the worlds of orchestral classical music and jazz, Dave is a multiple threat. As a classical musician, he has been a member of The Edmonton Symphony, The Winnipeg Symphony and The Hamilton Philharmonic. As a jazz artist, he is a chameleon-like bassist, who often shines brightest in collaborative efforts with other musicians. Because of his technical skill, few bassists (jazz or otherwise) are able to dig in, swing hard and still render a lyrical arco solo as Dave can.
One of Dave’s most beloved gigs was a five year stint (1961-66) as a member of iconic jazz guitarist Lenny Breau’s quartet. Recently, Randy Bachman’s “Guitar Archives” label has released Bourbon Street – a LIVE recording of Dave and Lenny in duo format, digitally restored and originally recorded on a primitive reel to reel at Toronto’s late, lamented jazz venue. The list of musicians with whom Dave has shared the stage is a virtual “Who’s Who” of international jazz…including the late Oscar Peterson (with whom Dave had a thirty-five year musical relationship), Clark Terry, Harry “Sweets” Edison, Zoot Simms, Joe Williams, Oliver Jones, Kenny Burrell, Cedar Walton, Hank Jones, Nat Adderly, Peter Appleyard, Gary Burton, Barney Kessell, Ed Bickert, Ranee Lee, Marcus Belgrave, Don Thompson, Kenny Burrell and James Moody.
In recent years, Dave Young has released a number of excellent CDs as leader: the JUNO winning Fables and Dreams with co-leader Phil Dwyer (Justin Time Records); We Three with Phil Dwyer and Michele Lambert (torontosound.com) and Two by Two – Volumes 1 & 2 (1995 & 96) which featured Dave in duet performances with jazz legends Oscar Peterson, Cedar Walton, John Hicks, Mulgrew Miller, Tommy Flanagan, Ellis Marsalis, Barry Harris, Kenny Barron, Renee Rosnes, Cyrus Chestnut and Oliver Jones and the hit recordings Tale of the Fingers with Special Guest Mulgrew Miller (Justin Time), the excellent quintet album, Mainly Mingus (Justin Time), which features Dave’s re-imaginings of the music of Charles Mingus and Horace Silver and 2009’s excellent Mean What You Say (Modica Music). Dave’s two most recent CDs, Aspects of Oscar (2011) and The Dave Young/Terry Promane Big Band – Volume ONE (2013) were both released on the Modica Music label, and were both nominated for the JUNO Award – Best Traditional Jazz Recording of the Year.