Mysterious By All Means
A veteran of jazz, world beat, reggae, ska, Latin, African marimba, rock, and funk bands across the country, Jade Synstelien has worked extensively throughout the U.S. as a musician, composer, arranger, and band leader since age fifteen. By his early twenties he scored original music and large-scale jazz works that were performed by such groups as The Taos Jazz Orchestra, Angry Planet, The New Mexico Jazz Workshop, and the Groove Junkies. In New Mexico Jade also worked for legendary alto player Frank Morgan. Jade came to New York in 2001 to start a new orchestra and learn from the city's living legends. One month after arriving, his 11-piece Staring Into the Sun Orchestra began performing original compositions at the historic Smalls jazz club. Jade has composed an extensive catalog of big and small band compositions, all of which he performed almost nightly at New York's Fat Cat Jazz Club throughout 2005-06 in trio, quartet, and as leader of the Fat Cat Big Band. He has performed in venues throughout the New York area with artists such as Billy Kaye, Saul Rubin, Roy Hargrove, Ned Goold, and Cliff Barbaro, and can also be heard on Nellie McKay's 2003 Columbia debut 'Get Away From Me.' 'Mysterious By All Means' is a collection of Jade's observations, reflections, and meditations on six years of immersion in New York's jazz scene and it's contrasts with his experiences across the United States. The art, community, tensions, and passions are reflected in these songs, in which Jade's own love for jazz, it's history and traditions, and it's power to enlighten and unify is expressed.