Ton Trio II with Aram Shelton, alto saxophone; Scott Brown, bass; Alex Vittum, drums. They are an avant/modern jazz trio that thrive in, and out of conventional structure. Drawing from Shelton’s bright and even folk-like compositions, the trio weaves continuously through melody, rhythm, and texture with written parts that serve as entry points for spacious improvisations. All three members play almost continuously, keeping the voices of melody, harmony and rhythm on an even level. Free jazz in the Ornette Coleman lineage.
The Oakland based Ton Trio II was formed by Shelton in late 2012 as the newest vehicle for his small ensemble avant jazz writing, heard before in groups including Arrive (482 Music and CleanFeed) with Jason Adasiewicz, Jason Roebke and Tim Daisy; Cylinder (CleanFeed) with Darren Johnston, Lisa Mezzacappa and Kjell Nordeson; and the Fast Citizens (Delmark) with Fred Lonberg-Holm, Josh Berman, Keefe Jackson, and Frank Rosaly. Ton Trio II has quickly developed a body of work through a monthly at the Layover in Oakland hosted by the Oakland Freedom Jazz Society. Their album On and On was released by Singlespeed Music in 2014.
A recent midwestern transplant to Oakland, originally from Chicago, Scott Brown studied at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor with Robert Hurst, Geri Allen, and Donald Walden, and composition Andrew Mead & Andrew Bishop. He attended the Steans Institute in 2008. He currently performs throughout the bay area with Astronauts Etc, Waterstrider, and many others.
Alex Vittum is a percussionist, sound designer and electronic musician based in the San Francisco Bay Area. He is a member of several groups including Stratic, For Now, Ton Trio II, and performs solo electro-acoustic works as Prism. Alex has collaborated with a diverse group of musicians, composers and choreographers including Roswell Rudd, Kitty Brazleton, Ben Goldberg, Daniel Carter, Stuart Dempster, Annie Lewandowski (Powerdove), Thomas Kozumplik (The Clogs), Paul Dresher Ensemble, and Gina Gibney Dance. He has a BA from Bennington College, an MFA from Mills College and has studied percussion with Milford Graves and William Winant.
On and On
Released by Singlespeed Music in 2014.
"the musicians impeccably integrate the modern jazz vernacular with invocative avant-garde campaigns" - All About Jazz
"the rhythm section provides agile, swift support for Shelton's tart alto saxophone, which hurtles over the grooves without a misstep" - Chicago Reader
"enervating as well as high energy, but with no loss of commitment" - JazzWord
" they deliver a showcase of musical dexterity and ideas that grabs you the moment the needle finds the groove" the Free Jazz Collective