2003, March 25 – RELEASED “JUNGLE TANGO”

Leo Tolstoy’s short story “How Much Land Does A Man Need”, a story of a foolish Russian peasant’s, greed driven pact with the devil is part of Jamie Masefield’s unique internal voice and vision which braided with the influence of his musical hero Astor Piazzolla beget “Jungle Tango”…Jamie’s unique compositions reflect not only tango but traces of the milonga and candombe; musical forms which were part of tangos early african roots…one reviewer aptly described “Jungle Tango” when he said, “It is tango which really can appeal to the skate boarder and the sophisticated artist at the same time”...but there are other things which are part of  Jamie’s vision; his love of literature, his curiosity, and his devotion to making the world a better place…Jamie Masefield was born into a musical family; his grandfather, himself an experimenter with tango rhythms, was an upright bassist who played with, among others, the legendary Tommy Dorsey Band in the late 40s…his boyhood home was full of musicians rehearsing and through them he discovered the mandolin to which he devoted himself with passion…

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At the University of Vermont he began playing with student jazz groups and later he became a precocious member of jazz groups throughout the New England area…in 1993 he decided to donate one night a month to lead an impromptu group of musicians at “The Last Elm Cafe”, a non-profit coffee-house in Burlington Vermont…the concept of the sessions was that it would not be strictly jazz but that it would include whatever genre of music the musicians were inspired by…the monthly gigs became so popular that at a certain point Jamie decided to devote all his energy to them and out of it was born the “Jazz Mandolin Project” which has been invited to music festivals all over the world including the prestigious North Sea Jazz Festival in Den Haag Holland…in 1996 they released the first of several critically acclaimed albums including a brilliant, jazz based, modern-day adaptation of Tolstoy’s “How Much Land Does a Man Need”…..one noted critic said, “The Jazz Mandolin Project’s refreshing, exciting, mandolin-driven rhythms has expanded the reach of Jazz to new audiences”

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