Bill Cole & the Untempered Ensemble
If you were to go looking for the exact musical intersection where East meets West, you might well end up at the sonic doorstep of Bill Cole, who for decades has been infusing the American jazz form with some of the most exotic and authentic instrumental sounds of cultures around the globe. Last fall, Cole returned to Charlottesville with his acclaimed Untempered Ensemble for a pair of concerts and a series of lectures and demonstrations presented for both the UVA and Charlottesville communities. Often building off a base of traditional jazz rhythms, Cole and his group replace traditional instrumentation with an array of instruments representing Asia, Africa, Australia, the Caribbean and the United States, employing the sounds of the didgeridoo, Asian double reeds, Chinese sonas, the Indian nagaswarm and more to create a fascinating global translation of jazz. Cole, who is known for spotlighting the work of lesser-known master musicians, presented pieces composed by the late pianist Don Pullen, transposing the pieces of the Roanoke native for instruments including the West African kora, Indian shenai, and the other instruments of the ensemble.