Sound Underground is a compact trio with an expansive imagination. Their inquisitive approach is guided by words of wisdom from jazz legend Wayne Shorter: "You've got to go down in the basement and visit every note.” Based in New York City, saxophonist David Leon, trumpeter Alec Aldred and guitarist Jonah Udall draw on a broad array of influences from Cool Jazz to Americana, to Bulgarian folklore and the avant-garde to distill a unique and deeply personal voice.
Hailed by All About Jazz as “a fresh sound... uncluttered and open... capable of grabbing a listener's attention and holding it indefinitely,” Sound Underground steers through inventive textures far beyond the limits of their unconventional chamber instrumentation. At once serious and whimsical, thought-provoking and smile-inducing, the trio spins colorful stories that ring immediately true.
Sound Underground’s music emanates the warmth of close friendships. The three met while studying at the Frost School of Music and formed while living together in Miami, building the close personal bonds that ground their strong musical connection. They released their self-titled debut in 2014 with a tour of Eastern Europe, performing at major international jazz festivals in Bulgaria and Serbia. They regularly tour on all sides of the U.S., and have returned to Europe. Their sophomore album Quiet Spaces was released in September 2016.
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Saxophonist David Leon is a Cuban-American from Miami, Florida. He has been recognized by Downbeat Magazine, the ASCAP Foundation, and the YoungArts Foundation, and debuted his quartet at the 2017 Newport Jazz Festival. His style is characterized by an exploration of nuance, through the creative manipulation of saxophone technique, tampering with equal temperament and employing microtonality.
Trumpeter Alec Aldred hails from Waukesha, Wisconsin. A long-time student of trumpet icon Bryan Lynch, he takes influence from the trumpet traditions of Clifford Brown, Freddie Hubbard, Tom Harrell and others. He placed second in the 2015 National Trumpet Competition, and holds a Master’s of Music from the Manhattan School of Music.
Guitarist Jonah Udall was raised in Berkeley, California, steeped in folk musics from around the world. He plays acoustic and electric guitars in everything from jazz, contemporary classical and free improvisation to Americana and Balkan folk music, and collaborates extensively with dancers. He explores the acoustic possibilities of the guitar, uses repetition as humanist investigation, and borrows ideas from unexpected extramusical sources.