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Bunnett, Jane

cuban player soprano

Bunnett, Jane, Canadian jazz soprano saxophonist and flutist; b. Toronto, Ontario, Canada, Oct. 22, 1956. Bunnett was originally trained as a classical pianist but had to give up that career option when tendinitis made it too difficult for her to play. Traveling to San Francisco to recoup her energies, Bunnett heard a series of concerts by Charles Mingus at Keystone Corners which inspired her to change her instrumental focus to the flute. She is also a gifted soprano saxophone player, having studied with Steve Lacy and won a couple of Down Beat polls for the instrument. Another crucial element in her musical history revolves around her discovery of Cuban rhythms and musicians. Before this time, she was a fairly straight–ahead post–bop player with interesting, if conventional, ideas. Bunnett’s exposure to Cuban music has opened up new vistas in her playing and widened her compositional palette. Her album Spirits of Havana featured a large group, including several Cuban percussionists. She also appeared with a Cuban group at the 1998 Caramoor festival in N.Y. and elsewhere. Bunnett and her trumpet–playing husband Larry Cramer are raising money to send technicians to Cuba to repair Cuban musicians’ antiquated Soviet–era instruments.

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