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Chuck Owen Unveils New Jazz Band And His Role In It

Aug 28, 2019

USF Distinguished Professor of Jazz Studies Chuck Owen has taken his multiple Grammy-nominated big band, The Jazz Surge, and turned it into a sextet named ReSurgence.

And as nervous as he is about the band's debut Wednesday night in Ybor City, Owen is more anxious about the new role he'll play in it: piano player, as opposed to conductor.

Owen told WUSF All Night Jazz Director Mike Cornette it's the first time he'll play piano publicly in 20 years.

"Basically I could tell you how scared to death I am, mostly not wanting to hang all these other great musicians up because I'm surrounding myself with wonderful folks and I'm counting on them to make me sound good," said Owen.

"My role in this honestly is going to be the colorist, so I'm not in there to be a big-time soloist or anything like that," he added. "I might play an occasional solo from time to time, but for the most part, I've got other people that do that and do that extremely well."

LISTEN HERE: Mike Cornette's interview with Chuck Owen on WUSF All Night Jazz

The Jazz Surge's 2017 album, Whispers on the Wind, received four Grammy nominations, while their 2014 release, River Runs, picked up two.

The debut performance of ReSurgence is Wednesday in the Mainstage Theatre at HCC/Ybor at 7:30 p.m.