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The Bad Plus Joshua Redman create a sublime sound

When the three members of the Bad Plus met saxophonist Joshua Redman, the jazz gods smiled. Tenor legend Redman and the Bad Plus cats – pianist Ethan Iverson, bassist Reid Anderson and drummer David King – have taken circuitous routes through the jazz tradition, but they’ve found fertile common ground, as evidenced first through a week of glowingly reviewed shows at the fabled Blue Note in New York City, and underscored by last year’s recording “The Bad Plus Joshua Redman” (Nonesuch).

Throughout its 20-year career, the Bad Plus has married modernity to jazz tradition, compiling a body of work that favors through-composition over the lengthy solos commonly associated with the form. Adding Redman to the mix has blown that conception wide open, adding what Iverson has called “extended blowing territory” to the Bad Plus template, and urging the New York Times to gush that “the music the quartet produces is sublime.” Indeed it is.

The Bad Plus Joshua Redman arrive for a show at 8 p.m. Friday in Rockwell Hall Performing Arts Center, SUNY Buffalo State (1300 Elmwood Ave.). Tickets are $35-$40 (box office). Visit

– Jeff Miers

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