The Davidson/Murley/Braid Quintet (DMBQ) is a collaborative effort amongst Juno Award winners Mike Murley (saxophones), David Braid (piano), and emerging artist Tara Davidson (saxophones). The DMBQ represents world-class improvisation with lyrical grace, contemporary harmony, and rhythmic vitality. Completing the quintet is the dynamic rhythm section of Jim Vivian (bass) and New Yorker Ian Froman (drums).
In October 2006 Davidson joined the pre-existing Murley/Braid Quartet as a special guest on a cross Canada tour. The success of this tour prompted Murley and Braid to invite Davidson to join the group permanently as a co-leader.
The DMBQ’s repertoire consists entirely of compositions written by the three leaders – many pieces written specifically for this ensemble. While Davidson, Murley, and Braid draw on varied influences in their compositional styles they all share an affection for lyricism that brings cohesion to the band’s diverse repertoire.
While in Vancouver, BC on their 2006 Canadian tour, the DMBQ recorded an unedited live CD that is an example of contemporary mainstream jazz at its finest. This new recording, released in Jan 2008, is comprised of eight tracks, with Davidson contributing two originals, and Murley and Braid both contributing three originals each. The DMBQ completed a second Canadian tour in 2008.
Tara Davidson – alto and soprano saxes
Toronto-born saxophonist, composer, and bandleader Tara Davidson is earning a reputation for herself as one of the leading lights in the next generation of Canadian jazz musicians. Not yet 29 years old, Davidson has performed in over 12 countries at such prestigious venues as New York City’s Carnegie Hall and The Sony Center in Pori, Finland. She has earned a Bachelor’s degree for Jazz Performance, been a “Sister In Jazz”, received an “Emerging Artist Award”, produced two recordings as leader, two as a co-leader, received a Juno nomination, and performed on over ten recordings as a side person.
Davidson’s debut recording as a leader, the Tara Davidson Quartet, was officially released in January 2004. The album is frequently featured on Jazz FM 91.1 and CBC National Radio stations. Her sophomore CD, Code Breaking, was released in the fall of 2006. Code Breaking features all-new compositions and special guest, Juno award winning saxophonist, Mike Murley. Demonstrating an evolution in Davidson’s sound and composing, Code Breaking features original compositions that are arranged for a new “electric” ensemble with saxophone, Fender Rhodes piano, and drums. The 2007 Juno Awards nominated Code Breaking as “Traditional Jazz Album of the Year”.
Davidson toured nationally as a special guest with the Murley/Braid Quartet in fall 2006. Following the success of the tour, Davidson officially joined the group as a co-leader with Murley and Braid to form the Davidson/Murley/Braid Quintet (DMBQ). The group released their debut CD, DMBQ Live, in January 2008 and toured officially as DMBQ in the summer and fall of 2008 to rave reviews. The group has been billed as “the best contemporary mainstream jazz group in the country”.
David Braid – piano
Juno-award winning pianist David Braid has been dedicated to developing as a composer and pianist since graduating magna cum laude from the University of Toronto performance program in 1998.
Braid was a semi-finalist in the Concours Internationaux de Piano Jazz in Paris, France, and was nominated for the Governor General’s Academic Medal by the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Music. In 2001, the Canada Council for the Arts (jazzID program) selected and showcased David Braid as one of five important young composers and jazz musicians in Canada. In 2005, he received six nominations at the National Jazz Awards: Acoustic Group of the Year, Album of the Year, Arranger of the Year, Keyboardist of the Year, SOCAN Composer of the Year and Musician of the Year. Braid has performed throughout Canada, Europe, Australia and Japan.
His first commission was from the Global Knowledge Foundation to compose a piece to honour Dr. Stephen Hawking’s visit to Toronto in 1998.
Ian Froman – drums
Drummer Ian Froman has appeared in the United States, Great Britain, Asia and Europe with such artists as Jerry Bergonzi, Michael Brecker, Gary Burton, Garry Dial, Larry Grenadier, Dave Holland, Dave Liebman, Rick Margitza, Ben Monder, Kenny Wheeler and John Taylor. In Canada, Froman has recorded six albums and garnered two Juno Awards with the highly acclaimed group Metalwood, and has appeared at nearly every Canadian jazz festival in a variety of ensembles. Froman now resides in New York City.
Jim Vivian – bass
As one of the most in demand bassists in the country, Jim has performed and recorded with numerous Canadian artists including Don Thompson, Jeff Johnston, and Sonny Greenwich. He has also worked with international artists such as Dave Liebman, Kenny Wheeler, and Tim Hagans, and John Abercrombie. Jim teaches part-time in jazz departments at both the University of Toronto and York University.