Victoria-based jazz guitarist Elliot Freedman, pictured here with one of his custom guitars, plays the Lighthouse Bistro with his trio on July 14. (Photo courtesy Jack Lew)

Avant-jazz fusion guitarist Elliot Freedman and band to play Lighthouse Bistro

Victoria-based musician will perform on trio of custom guitars

Victoria-based guitarist Elliot Freedman said he likes to approach his avant-jazz fusion compositions with a sense of adventure.

“What I try and do is create some meaningful compositions – whatever that means – of some gestures and melodies that feel good and are cool and put that together with some chords that move in interesting ways through interesting harmonic terrain,” Freedman explained.

He described his work as “super composed stuff that the other two guys are ornamenting on the fly,” and on Sunday, July 14, Freedman and his trio – bassist Ashlin Richardson and drummer Paul Mason – bring that spirit of exploration to the Lighthouse Bistro.

“I’m more of a composer than an improviser, although with this group these guys have really upped my game improvisationally,” Freedman said of his band.

During the concert, Freedman will be performing on a trio of custom guitars by Cowichan Bay-based luthier Steve Doreen. He’ll play solo arrangements on a specially designed “modern classical guitar” and with his trio he’ll play on two electric baritone guitars with built-in “re-synthesizers.”

“This unit actually will create other sounds by doing some very complicated signal processing on each of the guitar sounds and out of that I can get very horn-like sounds to do my single-note improvisations with,” Freedman said.

The other members of Freedman’s trio also play “interesting” instruments, Freedman noted, as Richardson will perform on both upright and six-string electric bass, while Mason will play drums made from fibreglass and Kevlar.

“From the instrumentation, to the sounds, to the players, to the com-positions, there’s nothing standard about this. It’s all adventure…” Freedman said. “It’s going to be a pretty, not complex musical evening, but it’s going to be an evening of some very rich, adventurous, harmonious music.”

WHAT’S ON … The Elliot Freed-man Trio plays the Lighthouse Bistroon Sunday, July 14 at 7:30 p.m. $20, $15 for students. Tickets available from the venue, Fascinating Rhythm, Arbutus Music or online.


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