Where We Begin

SSC1733 2024-04-02

Track List

Chorinho - 4:40
Bebe - 6:15
Mira Eso - 6:18
Within - 6:02
Milonga Gris - 5:24
A Ostra e o Vento - 7:38
Mamulengo - 6:51
Elvin da Bahia - 5:39


John Ellis - clarinet, saxophone
Magos Herrera - voice
Chico Pinheiro - guitar
Helio Alves - piano, fender rhodes
Joe Martin - bass
Alex Kautz - drums

On Where We Begin, the drummer’s debut recording as a bandleader, Alex Kautz has assembled a band that includes saxophonist John Ellis, pianist Helio Alves, bassist Joe Martin, and his frequent collaborator Chico Pinheiro on guitar. Vocalist Magos Herrera—with whom Kautz has worked extensively—serves as co-producer and contributes vocals on two tracks. Together, the ensemble explores the musical common ground between New York’s jazz and Brazilian musical communities. “Sometimes it goes more jazz and sometimes more Brazilian,” he says of the record. “Without changing anyone’s sound, we found a way to play within the different influences of different cultures.” He attributes this to each of these veteran musicians’ “openness” and adds, “Within the jazz language, everything can come together.”