Everything begins with a dream. Eli Degibri dreamt one night that he was playing a baritone saxophone. The next morning he woke up and went to the music store returning with a baritone saxophone in his bag. As his heart filled with the penetrating deep, strong, and gentle sound of the lynchpin of every fine saxophone section, he decided to form a Big Band. Degibri, described by Herbie Hancock as a musician that “has the potential to be a formidable force in the evolution of jazz,” is a composer with a distinct voice and longstanding bandleader of his own quartet. However, this time it is a Big Band, a hardcore Big Band, in the classic American tradition of Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Benny Goodman, Glenn Miller, and friends.
This Big Band was born to allow Degibri to play his all time’s favorite tunes. To this day, it was limited to small-scale underground concerts held in Tel Aviv with the guests being kept a secret. Naturally welcoming of a charismatic front, the Degibri Big Band has already hosted various leading artists including Efrat Gosh, Shlomi Shaban, Yoni Rechter, Maor Cohen, Alon Oleartchik and more.
In a dream production for the 2017 summer Red Sea Jazz Festival, they present a special tribute to the great female vocalists. A homage to women, singers and artists, whose soulful expression has touched the lives of many around the world, and written into the pages of jazz history: Ella Fitzgerald, Dana Washington, Billie Holiday, Sarah Vaughn, Aretha Franklin, and more. Inspired by the great Ladies of Jazz, three Israeli divas will walk on to the stage in Eilat: Dikla, Miri Mesika and Marina Maximilian. These three have exactly what it takes to sing with a Big Band: a powerful voice, a refined musical expression, a mesmerizing stage presence, and a captivating and intriguing personality.
Dikla is a singer and producer of oriental rock, world music, and Arab music. For two decades, she has created her own path in the music industry, persistently and courageously, releasing five albums before achieving a status of a beloved and successful star in recent years.
Miri Mesika, a pop singer and rocker in the grand diva style, a graduate of the Rimon School of Jazz and Contemporary Music, was discovered by the Israeli media a decade ago, and since then has released five albums and won the admiration and love of the audience.
Marina Maximilian, a singer, producer and pianist who grew up into jazz, and masters cabaret, pop and electronic music, sings in a deep alto voice and so far has released two albums of original materials receiving excellent reviews. These three local divas are a perfect lineup of inspiration and charisma, guaranteeing a riveting and befitting reminiscence of the greatest women of jazz.
This is going to be a real celebration. A show that calls for elegant evening dress, black tie, and glamour. A night of dance and sparks of sheer joy with the excitement that only music can bring to the soul. Duke Ellington, who led one of the most prominent Big Bands in history, once said, “A goal is a dream with a final line.” This evening is the goal.
The Degibri Big Band
Eli Degibri Artistic Director, Bandleader, Baritone Saxophone
Ofer Shapira, Yuval Drabkin, Eitan Goffman Saxophone
Oded Meir, Moran Baron Trombone
Udi Chonstakovsky, Gregory Rivkin Trumpet
Alon Nir Bass
Aviv Cohen Drums
Yonatan Ricklis Piano
Miri Mesika Vocals
Marina Maximilian Vocals
Photographer: Adi Orani, Aviv Abramov, Ilanit Cohen, Haggai Cohen milo.