Music: Saxophonist Jovan Alexandre plays jazz in a duo format Fri., Apr. 14

Tenor saxophonist Jovan Alexandre  performs at Best Video Performance Space on Friday, Apr. 14. The music starts at 8 PM and the cover is $7.

Alexandre will be accompanied by drummer Curtis Torian.

Jovan Alexandre is an emerging jazz tenor saxophone phenomenon, known for the brightness of his tone and the elegant bearing of his compositions. He may be situated, broadly speaking, within the penumbra of hard-bop and post-bop styles elaborated and taught in Alexandre’s native New England by the iconic Jackie McLean [1931-2006] during his later, seminal years as a Connecticut resident and educator.

Alexandre has been a soloist on recordings for drummers Ralph Peterson (Outer Reaches [2010]) and Winard Harper (Coexist, sharing the tenor spotlight with Frank Wess [2012]), and for the South African jazz singer Nonhlanhla Kheswa (Meadowlands, Stolen Jazz [2013]). Alexandre’s first album as a leader, Collective Consciousness, will be released worldwide on February 24, 2015.

Just as Jackie McLean himself had—in such albums for Blue Note as Let Freedom Ring [1962] and One Step Beyond [1963]—extrapolated upon both the lyricism and projection of a Charlie Parker or a Dexter Gordon and the angular modes and scales of John Coltrane, so has Jovan Alexandre revealed himself as a spiritual heir to McLean with authoritative and imaginative excursions into the free-flowing modernist colloquy pioneered by McLean.

Alexandre’s uniqueness, though, lies in his personal sound. He plays free of bombast, full of texture. His sound can variously seem molten and sharp-cornered within the same tune, sometimes practically within the same phrase. The melody lines are stately, whatever their tempo.

At Hartt, Alexandre’s primary mentor was Jackie McLean’s own son, tenor saxophonist René McLean. He also studied with other direct protégés of Jackie McLean, especially tenor saxophonist Jimmy Greene and alto saxophonist Kris Allen, along with pianist and arranger Chris Casey, trombonist Steve Davis, and bassist Nat Reeves. These instrumentalists are all key contributors to what some have called a “Hartford sound” grounded in Jackie McLean’s teachings and continuing influence, and especially his notions of historicity and the value of hand-to-hand transmission of jazz knowledge.

Even before graduating from Hartt, Alexandre had begun to earn a reputation as one of the most interesting of the new tenor saxophone soloists, through appearances with several top-name musicians such as Hank Jones,  Dionne Warwick, Curtis Fuller, Harold Mabern, Larry Willis, Charles Tolliver, Randy Brecker, Antoine Roney, Benito Gonzalez, Shimrit Shoshan, and Kendrick Oliver & The New Life Jazz Orchestra.

UPCOMING EVENTS (Music events start at 8 PM unless otherwise noted; screenings start at 7 PM unless otherwise noted):

• Thursday, Apr. 6. AVANT-GARDE: ELM FICTION, BLACK FLUFF

• Friday, Apr. 7. ROCK: GHOST RADIO, SONIA & SID

• Saturday, Apr. 8, 7 PM. CLASSICAL GUITAR: MAX LYMAN; AMERICAN PRIMITIVE GUITAR: ALEXANDER; SINGER-SONGWRITER: SAM MOTH

• Sunday, Apr. 9. REDSCROLL RECORDS SCREENING AND MUSIC: “DEADBEAT AT DAWN” with LIVE SOUNDTRACK BY NEPHEW

• Thursday, Apr. 13. JAZZ: JEFF FULLER & FRIENDS

• Friday, Apr. 14. JAZZ: JOVAN ALEXANDRE

• Sunday, Apr. 16, 7 PM. GEN X FILM SERIES SCREENING: “BLUE VELVET”

• Wednesday, Apr. 19. FOLK ROCK: WE HAPPY FEW

• Thursday, Apr. 20. ROCK ‘N’ ROLL: BIG FAT COMBO

• Friday, Apr. 21. ROCK ‘N” ROLL: DUST HAT

• Saturday, Apr. 22. JAZZ: ALLEN LOWE & THE FAKE MUSIC ENSEMBLE

• Sunday, Apr. 23, 7 PM. GEN X FILM SERIES SCREENING: “BLUE VELVET”

• Thursday, Apr. 27. SINGER-SONGWRITER: ZACH ANDERSON

• Friday, Apr. 28, 7:30 PM. BLUEGRASS: THE SLOCAN RAMBLERS (A GUITARTOWNCT CONCERT)

• Sunday, Apr. 30, 2 PM. LIGHTS! CAMERA! ACTION WORKSHOP FOR HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS: LIGHTS

• Sunday, Apr. 30, 7 PM. GEN X FILM SERIES SCREENING: “DO THE RIGHT THING”

• Thursday, May 4. INDIE ROCK: PROCEDURE CLUB

• Friday, May 5. SINGER-SONGWRITERS IN  THE ROUND: JENNIFER DAUPHINAIS, CHRISTOPHER BOUSQUET, FRANK CRITELLI

• Saturday, May 6. CULT FILM SCREENING: TBA

• Sunday, May 7. 2-5 PM. GUITARTOWNCT FREE AFTERNOON BLUEGRASS JAM

• Sunday, May 7, 7 PM. GEN X FILM SERIES SCREENING: “THELMA AND LOUISE”

• Thursday, May 11. INDIE ROCK: ZOO FRONT, THE FURORS

• Friday, May 12. SINGER-SONGWRITER: SHAWN TAYLOR & WANDERING ROOTS (CD Release)

• Saturday, May 13. JAZZ: ALLEN LOWE & THE FAKE MUSIC ENSEMBLE

• • Sunday, May 14, 7 PM. GEN X FILM SERIES SCREENING: “MY BEAUTIFUL LAUNDERETTE”

• Wednesday, May 17. POP: THE RACKET DOWNSTAIRS

• Friday, May 19. INDIE ROCK: LA TUNDA

• Sunday, May 21, 2 PM. LIGHTS! CAMERA! ACTION WORKSHOP FOR HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS: LIGHTS

• Thursday, May 25. DR. CATERWAUL’S CADRE OF CLAIRVOYANT PLAYS MUSIC FROM “TWIN PEAKS”

• Friday, May 26. INDIE ROCK: WALLY

• Thursday, June 1. INDIE ROCK: IF JESUS HAD MACHINE GUNS

• Friday, June 2. JAZZ VOCAL: LINDA SATIN WITH JOE CARTER & TIM MORAN

• Sunday, June 4, 2 PM. LIGHTS! CAMERA! ACTION WORKSHOP FOR HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS: LIGHTS

• Friday, June 9. ALT-COUNTRY: PAT STONE, BOX OF BIRDS

• Sunday, June 11. 2-5 PM. GUITARTOWNCT FREE AFTERNOON BLUEGRASS JAM

• Friday, June 16, 7:30 PM. BLUEGRASS: MILE TWELVE (GUITARTOWNCT PRODUCTIONS)

• Friday, June 23. CHAMBER ROCK: THE TET OFFENSIVE

• Friday, Aug. 4, 7:30 PM. BLUEGRASS: HONEY DEWDROPS (GUITARTOWNCT PRODUCTIONS)

• Friday, Aug. 11. INDIE ROCK: LYS GUILLORN & HER BAND

• Friday, Sept. 8. INDIE ROCK: THE SAWTELLES

• Friday, Sept. 15, 7:30 PM. BLUEGRASS: ROB ICKES & TREY HENSLEY (GUITARTOWNCT PRODUCTIONS)

• Friday, Oct. 20. BLUEGRASS: MISSY RAINES & THE NEW HIP (GUITARTOWNCT PRODUCTIONS)

• Thursday, Nov. 16, 7 PM. BLUEGRASS: TIM O’BRIEN