Jazz Conspiracy
Gig Seeker Pro

Jazz Conspiracy

Band Jazz Jazz


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"It's a Conspiracy with a Groove"

Published April 8, 2005

The idea of men conspiring can be unsettling--but the battle fought by Chicago-based quintet Jazz Conspiracy is one many of us can get behind.

"We're against this idea that jazz is for the few or the privileged," said trumpeter Thomas Mucha. "We disagree, we think jazz is people's music. You know, it's about emotion and head-bopping and joy of expression."

Tony Dreyfuss, owner of Metropolis Coffee Company, picked up on the band's mission when the quintet used to cram onto his stage for gigs. "It's not jazz that will scare people away in any way," he said. "It's definitely for everyone, as opposed to people who are really going off the deep end with jazz."

Formed last year, Jazz Conspiracy aims to mix the traditional with the innovative. In one set, they might swing through a standard by the likes of Jerome Kern, Cole Porter or Duke Ellington before driving home one of the quintet's own compositions. "Even with our standards we always try to take that song and make it our own," said drummer Matt Mayes. "It's not like we're going to pick up a chart and just play through it. We're going to try to pick it apart and define what makes this song work."

These co-conspirators all met at the Loop's Bloom School of Jazz. "We're all sort of cut from the same musical cloth. We all have similar ideas about what works and what doesn't," Mucha said. That commonality is crucial as Jazz Conspiracy is keen on pursuing "the group sound." "Nobody seems to do much of this anymore but we think it's important because as a group, we can sort of create a synergy and a whole that's greater than the sum of its parts."

A great thing about group playing, Mucha said, is "the little conversations that go on within and among the group, and all the conversations that go on between the band and the audience. To us, that's what jazz is."

Jazz Conspiracy, 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Pops for Champagne, 2934 N. Sheffield Ave. $12; 773-472-1000. - Jenn Q. Goddu, Chicago Tribune

"download.com Editors' Review - 2005"

At that delightful edge between bop and cool, Jazz Conspiracy stakes its claim. Here are cats who can move a groove and aren't afraid to roll out a sentimental ballad. They have a solid grasp of the territory, creating an inspiringly approachable treat. - c|net

"Chicago Jazz Reviews: Found and Heard Locally"

On a completely different tip, the self-released debut Up to Get Down by straight-ahead postbop quintet Jazz Conspiracy shows another side of younger Chicago jazzers.

Led by the confident and swinging horns of Thomas Mucha (trumpet) and Trent Harris (tenor saxophone), this tight group's set features a dozen varied originals that highlight the talents of each member without showboating or grandstanding. Especially fine are Harris's tenor work and pianist David Beazley's vibing Wurlitzer piano playing on the dark ballad "Clean and Clear," an original penned by bassist Marc Piane. Mucha contributes five tunes replete with sterling solos, including the neobop cooker "City Snap" and Latin boogaloo "The Conspiracy." Beazley also varies his McCoy Tyner-esque piano tracks with some crunchy Rhodes comping on "The Sound of Inevitability" and also contributes some refreshingly restrained and melodic solos on "Riverside Blues" and "Freddie's Groove." Definitely a group to catch live.
-Bob Holub

- Gapers Block


Up to Get Down - 2007
redjazz.com Featured Artist - 2006



Jazz Conspiracy's mission is to play jazz that is true to tradition but blurs the edges of the idiom, and that everybody, jazzophile or jazz newbie, can understand, dig, and get down to. Each of Jazz Conspiracy's members brings considerable experience gigging in pop/rock/jazz/big bands, and melds an accomplished professional career by day with musical gigging by night. Jazz Conspiracy's unique fusion of professional/musical talent, personality, creativity, and style give it a sound and look that is completely its own.

Drawing inspiration from the great jazz groups and albums of the 50's and 60's, like those by Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Art Blakey, Horace Silver, Joe Henderson, McCoy Tyner, and Wayne Shorter to name a few, Jazz Conspiracy places greatest emphasis on group sound and group interaction, with individual chops and pyrotechnics taking a back seat to the group aesthetic. As an egalitarian jazz ensemble that writes, arranges, rehearses, and plays almost exclusively together, Jazz Conspiracy is a modern rarity. But this difference in approach is how Jazz Conspiracy executes its evil plan to bring great jazz to everyone, forging into the 21st century with music that speaks, listens, reacts, grooves, and ultimately, connects.