Named after its members (Alex Dean, Barry Elmes, Steve Wallace), D.E.W. EAST is a versatile, co-operative group formed in 1998 as a vehicle to bring together three of Canada's best jazz artists into a "power trio" format. Featuring compositions by all three band members, D.E.W. East explores the dynamics, energy and communication that is possible through improvisation in a group limited in size to three creative musicians. With bassist Steve Wallace and percussionist Barry Elmes, Alex Dean performs on a variety of instruments, including tenor and soprano saxophones, bass clarinet, flute and oboe. This diversity makes it possible for only three composer/musicians to collectively explore a variety of ideas and sounds within a jazz framework. Recent projects have included recordings and performances with featured guests, including baritone saxophone master Nick Brignola and guitarist Reg Schwager. D.E.W. EAST is based in Toronto.
ALEX DEAN - saxophones, bass clarinet, flute
Alex Dean, one of Canadas foremost jazz saxophonists, is also featured on flute and bass clarinet in D.E.W. EAST. He brings with him an extensive musical background, having performed and recorded with Gil Evans, Kenny Wheeler, Natalie Cole, Time Warp, Aretha Franklin, and many others. Alex also held the tenor saxophone chair with the Grammy Award winning Boss Brass, and now with Rob McConnell's Tentet. A bandleader in his own right, he has three CD releases to his credit: Both Feet (1986), Dreamsville (1990), and Kaitlyns Waltz (1994). The latter received The Jazz Report Award for Best Jazz Recording of 1994.
BARRY ELMES - drums
Drummer-composer-bandleader Barry Elmes has been a mainstay of the Canadian jazz scene since the early 1980s. He has performed and recorded with a long list of renowned jazz artists, including Tommy Flanagan, Dewey Redman, Oliver Jones, Charlie Haden, Dizzy Gillespie and Moe Koffman. He has co-led the group Time Warp since its inception. His own group, The Barry Elmes Quintet, has released four CDs: Climbing (1991, nominated for a Juno Award for Best Jazz Recording), East-West (1993), Different Voices (1997) and The Five Minute Warning (2001). Barry also received the Jazz Report Award for Jazz Musician of the Year (1993,1994) and Jazz Drummer of the Year (1994, 1995,1996,1998, and 2000).
STEVE WALLACE - bass
Steve Wallace may well be the most powerful jazz bassist that Canada has produced. Hes certainly the most experienced, having received his jazz education while on the job in the 1970s with some of the musics most famous leaders, including Zoot Sims, Pepper Adams, and a host of other American and Canadian artists. Since that time, Steve has been a Concord recording artist, touring the Soviet Union, Europe and Japan. He became bassist with Rob McConnells Boss Brass in 1983 and stayed for a decade. In recent years Steve was a member of the Oscar Peterson Trio and toured Europe. He has been bassist with the Barry Elmes Quintet since its inception in 1991. With D.E.W. East, Steve also contributes his own new compositions.