Scholfield Honda presents
Buy Tickets Saturday, March 30th - 08:00 PM
Reserved Seating: $75 Front Row, $45 Orchestra Rows B-K, $35 Orchestra Rows L-W; $45 Front Row Lower Balcony, $35 Lower Balcony Rows AB-AG; $25 Upper Balcony Rows BA-BG, $15 Upper Balcony Rows BH-BL.
As Spyro Gyra contemplates upcoming milestones to its storied career, it’s tempting to fall back on the Grateful Dead lyric, “What a long strange trip it’s been” to describe it. During that time, they have performed over five thousand shows, released 29 albums (not counting “Best Of…” compilations) selling over 10 million albums while also achieving one platinum and two gold albums. Just next year, 2014, Spyro Gyra will celebrate 40 years as a band and they show little sign of wanting to slow down.
In their earliest days, Spyro Gyra took their cues from Weather Report and Return to Forever – bands whose creative flights were fueled by a willingness to do things that had never been done before. “I believed that we were springing from what Weather Report did,” says Jay Beckenstein. “I never thought in commercial terms. I just thought they were the next step in the evolution of jazz, and that we would be part of it.”
The first few years saw the group’s identity split into a dynamic live act and a producer centric recording process, born out of the rotating cast of characters in the jazz jam beginnings. These albums were the product of the band and a great number of the top session players in New York. In 1983, Beckenstein made the decision to make the albums the work of the band members he shared the stage with night after night, only supplementing with occasional guests.
“When we first started,” Beckenstein recalls, “a lot of the jazz purists got on our case about calling what we did jazz and now it’s funny to hear us getting respect from the same people. Like, wow, what you guys did was so much more intriguing than some of the stuff they hear today… Art manifests itself in a multitude of styles and contexts. Isn’t that why we started to play in the first place?”
Spyro Gyra was picked up by Amherst Records, a local label who then made a deal for subsequent albums to go to Infinity Records, a label owned by MCA Records. After gaining Infinity its only gold (soon to be platinum) record with Morning Dance, Infinity folded and the group was picked up by MCA Records. There they stayed until MCA acquired noted contemporary jazz label GRP Records. Spyro Gyra moved to GRP in 1990 and put out all but one of their 1990’s output on that label. In 1999, they released a single album, Got The Magic on Windham Hill Jazz. The “aughts” had them returning to an indie mode, licensing their albums to Heads Up International. Most of those Heads Up albums have since returned to the band as self-released independent releases. They returned to Amherst Records in Buffalo for their most recent studio album, A Foreign Affair.
Tickets may be purchased by phone at (316) 755-7328, online at www.selectaseat.com, all area Dillon’s Superstores and Plant Employee Clubs.
Spyro Gyra is Presented By