Jazz Is Dead
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|Jazz Is Dead|
|Years active||1998-2006, 2015-present|
Jazz is Dead is an instrumental Grateful Dead cover band that interprets classic Dead songs with jazz influences. The group is notable in featuring veterans of jazz and jazz fusion ensembles. The group's composition has changed over time, and T Lavitz was the band's only constant member until they reformed in 2015 (five years after Lavitz's death).
In March 2006 the band set out for a month-long tour featuring the music of Blues for Allah to coincide with its 30th anniversary.
- Current members
- Alphonso Johnson - bass (1998-2001, 2015-present)
- Rod Morgenstein - drums (1999-2006, 2015-present)
- Jeff Pevar - lead guitar (2001-2006, 2015-present)
- Tom Constanten - keyboards (2015-present)
- Chris Smith - keyboards (2015-present)
- Former members
- Billy Cobham - drums (1998-1999)
- Jimmy Herring - lead guitar (1998-2001)
- T Lavitz - keyboards (1998-2006; died 2010)
- Jeff Sipe - drums (1999-2006)
- Kenny Gradney - bass (2001-2002)
- Dave Livolsi - bass (2002-2006)
|1998 – 1999|
|1999 – 2001|
|2001 – 2002|
|2002 - 2006||
|2006 – 2015||
|2015 - present|
The band's original line-up consisted of:
- Guitar: Jimmy Herring (Aquarium Rescue Unit, Frogwings, Widespread Panic)
- Bass: Alphonso Johnson (Weather Report)
- Drums: Billy Cobham (Miles Davis, Mahavishnu Orchestra)
- Keyboards: T Lavitz (Dixie Dregs)
The group went through a few more line-up changes (mostly bassists and drummers) over the years including the addition of Dave Livolsi on bass in 2002 and the reinstated dual-drummer line-up of Sipe and Morgenstein in 2006.
In celebration of the 50th Anniversary of The Grateful Dead, Jazz Is Dead reformed for several shows in August and September 2015. The lineup will include Alphonso Johnson on bass, Jeff Pevar on guitar, drummer Rod Morgenstein, keyboardist Chris Smith and one-time Grateful Dead pianist Tom Constanten.
In 2012 the group released the latest JID CD "Grateful Jazz", produced and arranged by Pevar, featuring T Lavitz, Jeff Pevar, Rod Morgenstein, David Livolsi and special guests, Alphonso Johnson, Luis Conte, Bill Evans, Jerry Goodman, Bill Holloman and Howard Levy. This CD serves as a swan song to the late T Lavitz. More info at http://pevar.com/music/jazzisdead-gratefuljazz/
- 1998 Blue Light Rain
- 1999 Laughing Water
- 2001 Great Sky River
- 2012 Grateful Jazz
- Hochanadel, Michael (April 5, 2002). "Jazz Is Dead to jam on Grateful Dead songs at Van Dyck". The Daily Gazette. Retrieved December 11, 2012.
- Himes, Geoffrey (August 6, 1999). "Jazz Is Dead: "Laughing Water" Zebra". The Washington Post. Retrieved December 11, 2012. (subscription required)
- Kavanaugh, Lee Hill (May 12, 1998). "Jazz Is Dead...and the music is Grateful as jazzers play music for Deadheads". The Kansas City Star. Retrieved December 11, 2012.
- uncredited (June 9, 2015). "Jazz Is Dead Reforms After Ten Year Hiatus". JamBase. Retrieved July 6, 2015.