TIZER: Melting Pot of Music Fusing Jazz with Joy

Performances and Artists

Fusion can be an overused word, but not when you combine (dare we say fuse) TIZER, 2011 "Jazz Group of the Year" nominee, with violinist Karen Briggs’ eclectic range and synthesis of world musical influences — and put them on stage at Cabaret Jazz April 1-2.

Pianist, keyboardist, composer and former “Best New Jazz Artist” nominee, Lao Tizer is the man leading this multi-cultural group. The other top-tier musicians in TIZER include Grammy®-winning Cuban drummer Raul Pineda, bass icon Ric Fierabracci, multi-instrumentalist Steve Nieves, and Cuban ace percussionist Jesus Diaz.

Tizer, a Boulder, Colorado native, who has been writing and playing piano since he was five years old, has led his group through a trail of albums and concert tours, fine-tuning its intensity, expansive arrangements and exciting soloing. But, it is the fusion of flavors, incorporating jazz, funk, Afro-Cuban, classical and rock influences, that stamps this group with uniqueness all its own.

While the albums are important, Tizer points to live performances as the key to the connection with his fans. As he told an interviewer in 2006, “I think my strongest attribute as an artist has always been the ability to connect with people in the live setting more than any place else. When we play live, the connection we make with the fans is something that can be very special. That means a lot to me….” It still means a lot ten years later.

The additional flavor in the melting pot of TIZER is Briggs, known as the “Lady in Red.” She made her Carnegie Hall debut in 1994 with Dave Grusin and is renowned for her multiple tours with Yanni. When Briggs joins TIZER, she adds her own fire, improvisation, and embellishment, gleaned from her more than four decades performing through various genres as a violinist. Her commitment and talent were acknowledged in 2014, when she was recognized by the Jazz Legacy Foundation, Inc. for her outstanding achievements in Jazz and by Portsmouth Public Schools as a distinguished graduate.

Tizer, TIZER, and Briggs. Call it what you want: fusion, melting pot, or musical mixture. It’s a joyful performance!