Jazz twins Peter and Will Anderson to perform for Chamber Music Amarillo concert series
"Speak Low," The Peter and Will Anderson Trio
By Chip Chandler — Digital Content Producer
In jazz, it helps to be able to read your fellow players' minds. Peter and Will Anderson have that part down cold — as you'd expect, given that they're twins.
The brothers, along with guitarist Adam Moezinia, will return to Amarillo for an 8 p.m. Friday performance in the Fibonacci Space, 3306 S.W. Sixth Ave., as part of Chamber Music Amarillo's Jazz on 6th series. Tickets are $15. Call 806-236-3545.
"Jazz is an improvised art form. You learna lot of these styles by year, and to play with musicians for years and years really helps," Peter Anderson said in an April 10 phone interview. "You have to develop a rapport, a repertoire and a style. It's ahrd to find groups that are really good that are just thrown together."
That's not a problem with the 30-year-old brothers, who have been performing together since the age of 9.
"It really helps us to know what the other is going to do," Anderson said. "We know who'll play the harmony part, who'll play the melody, who's leading the song, who'll take over. These things are split-second interpretations that you have to make."
The brothers grew up in the Washington, D.C. area and gravitated to jazz early on.
"Our parents got some records of Duke Ellington and Count Basie and Charlie Parker and Benny Goodman, and we loved it. That really motivated us," Anderson said.
In D.C., the brothers were able to enjoy several armed forces bands, "these amazing, professional, full-size big bands that play concerts all over the area," Anderson said. "When you see it in person instead of just listening to recordings, it really transforms your ideas."
Though still young, the brothers — who alternate on saxophone, clarinet and flute — find themselves in the sweet spot of jazz fandom.
"I think jazz is in a really exciting time right now," Anderson said. "You've got (some of) the older generation who were there in the '40s and '50s still playing,and you've also got the young kids growing up. ... Unlike classical music, you can't really go out and hear Mozart and Brahms and Beethoven."
A good deal of the Andersons' repertoire is drawn from the Golden Age of the 1940s and '50s, along with a healthy mix of their own original compositions.
"We're not, like, jazz snobs where we're stuck in one era or another," Anderson said. "We try to incorporate the best aspects of all the different genres. But in general, we're traditionalists."