Sound Prints

“The defining trait of Sound Prints is the tangled crosstalk of its front line: an urbane, on-the-fly counterpoint brimming with crooked urgency, like a choice bit of dialogue in a David Mamet play.” – The New York Times

Sound Prints, the innovative quintet co-led by saxophonist Joe Lovano and trumpeter Dave Douglas is known as “one of the foremost ensembles in jazz” (Downbeat Magazine). Featuring the powerful multi-generational lineup of pianist Lawrence Fields, bassist Linda May Han Oh, and drummer Joey Baron, the group takes their inspiration from the music of iconic saxophonist and composer Wayne Shorter – the band’s name is a nod to his classic “Footprints” – however the quintet’s focus is on new original compositions by Lovano and Douglas. The band is fueled by a desire to push the boundaries of their music as far as they can stretch, similar to the expansive role Shorter has played in jazz since his debut with Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers in 1959.

The two leaders had crossed paths on rare occasions for nearly twenty years before forming Sound Prints. Douglas was a special guest on Lovano’s Blue Note release Flights of Fancy: Trio Fascination Edition Two in 2001, and they shared three seasons while members of the SFJAZZ Collective, including one in which they explored the repertoire of Wayne Shorter.

The group’s debut album, Live at Monterey Jazz Festival, was recorded in 2013 for Blue Note Records and featured original music as well as two new compositions from Shorter himself. All Music said of the album, “Sound Prints walk the line between muscular, tangible post-bop and free-flowing, avant-garde playing; a tantalizing dance that never fails to leave an impression.” The group’s second album, Scandal, was released in 2018 and marked the first time the pair has recorded a full studio album of material together. Featuring ten originals by Lovano and Douglas as well as treatments of two Shorter classics – “Fee Fi Fo Fum” and “Juju” – the album was called “exciting, often thrilling jazz” by JazzTimes. In a four-star review, The Guardian called it, “jazz with a deep sense of history, but imaginatively and spontaneously reworked.” The special edition 45 RPM vinyl disc On Pebble Street, which featured two additional tracks from the Scandal session, was release for Record Store Day in April 2018.

In May 2021, the ensemble will release their third full-length album, Other Worlds. Recorded in early 2020 after a week long pre-lockdown engagement at New York’s venerable jazz haunt, the Village Vanguard, the album is the first to include all originals by the co-leaders, including Lovano’s 3-part suite “Other Worlds Suite.”

Press Inquiries

Matt Merewitz
Fully Altered Media

Press Quotes

For Scandal:

Lovano’s cobalt-blue tone on tenor saxophone paired with Douglas’ crimson-tinged trumpet flares create startling timbres when they play in unison or intertwine improvisational lines.” – Down Beat ★★★★

[Lovano and Douglas] combine brilliantly to adjusting texture and tone as the composition demands and swooping from smooth modernism to expressionist shout with ease … The band delivers a strong sense of the collective.” – Financial Times ★★★★★

This is jazz with a deep sense of history, but imaginatively and spontaneously reworked … this session catches them at their most collectively fluent.” – The Guardian ★★★★☆

That loose, open-ended postbop sound is there, but apart from two classics, all the compositions are new. And what tunes they are — richly rewarding melodies that could have been minted for the Miles Davis quintet. Much of that band’s rigour and responsiveness is present here too.” – The Times UK ★★★★☆

Free, open-ended investigations sit side by side with the more straight-ahead … exciting, often thrilling jazz.” – Jazz Times

This enjoyable set co-led by trumpeter Dave Douglas and saxophonist Joe Lovano hangs at the edges of a straight-ahead path, dishing out music that sounds both a little bit different and distinctly familiar.” – Bandcamp Daily

Lovano’s … tenor broad and woolly as it sprawls across the grooves, while Douglas is the perfect foil with his slicing incisiveness of sound and ideas. The material, in addition to originals by the leaders, includes two of Wayne Shorter’s incomparable pieces, and it is gratifying to see Shorter’s work being revered in a way that Monk’s and Mingus’s was before him.” – Sydney Morning Herald ★★★½☆