MY BROTHER'S COOL JAZZ
When my brother, Lee Cronbach, was a teenager he played the piano in a way that haunted me because his improvisations seemed to echo something in my own spirit. He played with a driving rhythm, fusing elements of jazz and Middle Eastern music.
Over the years he has lived in Berkeley, Boston, Los Angeles, and for the last seventeen years he has lived in Seattle, where he teaches, composes, and performs with various groups, including his own, Creation City, which he founded in the Seventies in Boston. In the 1970s and 80s Creation City was a leading band in the Los Angeles coffee shop/jazz circuit, and was featured numerous times in live performance on KPFK-FM. Lee, although a devout Jew, is also the music director for Bethesda Lutheran Church, where he leads a jazz-gospel group (the sound of this is available on the CD Bethesda Gospel).
Creation City continues to perform today, although the musicians have changed over time. One constant is Mel Wiggins, a conga drummer who has also co-composed most of Lee's originals, and who co-led Creation City in Los Angeles. Recently Mel flew up from Los Angeles to work on Lee’s upcoming CD Angel Blues.
Over the years his music has evolved. It is no longer the music that he played when he was seventeen, but has gained in power and depth. I play his music a lot when I go through my daily stretching-dance-yoga routine. It has a joyous quality that lifts my spirits .
Lee’s currently available CDs include As the Mind Wanders, Creation City Live at Chandler’s Cove, and Blues for Pony. He will be coming out with a new CD this October - Angel Blues, and 12 Other Blues-Based Tropical Jams.
Samples of his music can be heard on his website, www.leecronbach.com. Listen and enjoy!!!
Causes Maria Espinosa Supports
Amnesty International, KPFA, anything to ameliorate homelessness and to make shelters more livable