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About the Musicians

Dale Ness ( that's me )     Piano, Composer.

    A little background may help put things into their context...  

     Growing up in a musical family, I started playing the piano as soon as I could stand on my toes and reach the keys.  My earliest piano memory is when I would push the pedal down and play clusters of notes. I would just let the piano ring, listening to the sound as it slowly died away.  I would experiment with high and low, quiet and loud.  I thought it was beautiful, but I'm sure I drove my family nuts.

    Through my piano lessons and my own investigations over the years I discovered Bach, Beethoven, Debussy, Chopin, Bartok, Brahms, Rachmaninov, Schoenberg, Schumann, Mozart, Poulenc, Hindemith, Stravinsky...  The list goes on.  I always have a stack of sheet music on the piano to read through and enjoy.  I don't have a favorite composer; I have many, many favorites.

    I was living in the Washington DC area as a teenager.  Listening to DC's WHFS in the 70s, you could hear a huge range of music.  That is when I first heard John McLaughlin's Mahavishnu Orchestra.  I was awestruck and dumbfounded by the sheer power and beauty of that music.  As a result, I bought all the Mahavishnu Orchestra LPs I could find, and I played them so much I wore them out.  From there I  went to Miles Davis "Bitches Brew", and that lead to Chick Corea, Wayne Shorter, Josef Zawinul, Weather Report, and Herbie Hancock.  That was it...I was hooked, a bona fide lifelong Jazz junkie.

    Fast forward to more recent times: The compositions for the "Noises In My Head" CD started with "Time to Breathe", which we recorded in March of '99.  I had recently met Ty Burhoe when he was playing in a concert in Boulder, so I was busy imagining all of the ways I could hear Piano and Tabla working together.  "Time to Breathe" was my first piece incorporating the Tabla.

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 Ty Burhoe      Tabla

    Recording artist and concert producer Ty Burhoe is the percussionist on the "Noises" CD.  Ty stays extremely busy touring and recording with Zakir Hussain, Kai Eckhardt, Paul McCandless,  Bela Fleck, and Miguel Espinoza, to name just a few collaborators.  Please visit Ty's website at www.tyburhoe.com. Make sure to check the discography page.

    The Tabla are a traditional Classical Indian instrument consisting of two hand drums.  The lower pitched drum is made of copper or brass, the smaller one is made of rosewood.  Both are highly resonant and are tuned to a specific pitch.  The lower one's pitch is changed while playing with the heel of the hand, which means that the Tabla are a rhythmic, an harmonic, and a melodic instrument.  This also means that the Tabla are an extraordinarily subtle, beautiful and difficult instrument to play.  Every time I play with Ty I am astounded at the range of sounds and rhythms he uses.  In these recordings Ty used three or four of the smaller drums in each tune.  This allowed the Tabla to harmonize with the chord changes, which are not an element of Classical Indian music.

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Doug Carmichael      Tenor, Alto, and Soprano Saxophones

        I am very pleased to be joined by saxophonist Doug Carmichael on these recording.  Doug and I have been playing gigs together for about 7 years now.  Even when he is just tuning up his tenor sax ( a '57 Selmer ) I just stop and listen to 'his sound'.  Doug's playing is simply magic.  Doug holds a M.A. in music education from the University of Colorado and teaches high school band, saxophone, guitar and music history. 

    By the way....Make sure to support arts education in the public schools !!!

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Erik Habbinga      Bass

    Erik spends much of his musical life playing Bass with the Longmont Symphony Orchestra, the Loveland Chamber Orchestra, and the Timberline Symphony Orchestra.  I met Erik doing local jazz gigs, and I just loved his playing.  Doug and I refer to Erik as 'Dr. Time' out of admiration for his musical perspective.  I look forward to upcoming concerts and recordings with him.  During daylight hours Erik is an R&D software guru for one of those well-known high tech companies.

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Rick White      Bass

    Rick is a prolific composer and was just finishing up his PhD at the University of Northern Colorado when we recorded "Time To Breathe".  I met Rick when I was playing a gig with "Just For Kicks" big band.  Between sets I walked next door to hear a jazz combo in which Rick was playing.  During his time at UNC, Rick was an in-demand player in the area, playing with the top local Jazz talent.   Rick introduced me to Greg Heimbecker at the music studio at UNC, and that is how I chose to record the "Noises In My Head" CD there.  It sure is funny how these things work out....

    Upon completion of his PhD, Rick took an academic position in the pacific northwest as director of Jazz studies.  We wish him all the best.

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