Playbill

Tenor saxophonist John Greiner is the latest jazz musician to flee the fresh air of the Northeast to our beloved Space City's poisoned atmosphere. What sets Greiner apart is that he has a truly historic recording under his belt: The Berkelee graduate located what's believed to be an unreleased John Coltrane composition, "Thing in D Flat," which he recorded for his 1992 disc, Shades, 20-plus years after Trane's death.

Greiner's tone, not to mention his use of Coltrane melodies and licks, on Shades revealed him to be a true Trane disciple. His 1995 album, From A to B, further cemented that impression. Both of Greiner's recordings reveal a young sax man with a lot of promise, and the later disc earned props from the critics and charted nationally.

Since arriving in Houston (where he came to get married), Greiner has been establishing himself on two fronts: the classroom, where he teaches, and the clubs, where he plays. While there aren't too many jazz musicians in town with national releases to their credit, Greiner is still the hungry new kid on the block. He has played gigs with Pat Hunt, David Vandiver and Joel Fulgham, and by all accounts has been embraced into the bosom of the Bayou City jazz community. Just how big a mark Greiner will make here remains to be seen, but if he fulfills the promise of his first two CDs, expect it to be big - really big.

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