Saxophonist Ben Dobay was born in raised in Salem, OR. He began playing clarinet at age 10 but quickly switched to Saxophone. He began performing jazz locally at age 16 while studying classical music at Sprague High
School. He continued to study music at Mt. Hood Community College until 2003 when he relocated to Eau Claire, WI to finish his degree. Ben travels frequently to continue his studies. In the summers he studies with
Portland based Saxophonist Renato Caranto. In 2006, thanks to charity grants, studied with New York tenor saxophonist Rich Perry. In the fall of 2006 Ben traveled with a quintet to China as part of the first group to
ever bring jazz to the cities of Guangzhou and Chongching. Ben has played in Eau Claire at the Stones Throw, House of Rock, Shanghai Bistro, and Stella Blues. He has performed in the Twin Cities at both the Artistsí
Quarter and The Dakota. He has performed with the Jimmy Dorsey Orchestra, Five-by-Design, Phil Hey, Lewis Nash, the New York based group Nees and Vos, and Nachito Herrera. |
A review by John Book of MusicforAmerica.org:
"While the traditions of jazz should always be honored and acknowledged, there is a need to keep the music alive and vibrant so it becomes more than just the classics or the standards. One group that wants to push the music forward by contributing more original compositions into the fold are The Ben Dobay Sextet out of Wisconsin. Their sound is heavily influenced by jazz from the 70ís. "Shortchanged" would fit perfectly on a Joe Zawinul or Keith Jarrett album, as the piano work by Scott Currier helps create a landscape for the listener to walk on before Dobay himself paves the path with his saxophone work. Bassist Jeremy Boettcher and drummer Sean Carey bring in a nice groove that may also remind people of the best of The Ramsey Lewis Trio or with Boettcher, Charles Mingus."
The Ben Dobay Sextet began as a vehicle for original jazz compositions. Although rooted in straight ahead jazz, the compositions began to extend beyond those traditional bounderies. This quickly grew to include spoken word and poetic forms. Our recording career was launched with the release of our first album entitled "Peace." This album is a mix of horn-driven swing and funk as well as some sensitive quartet work. The second half of the album is comprised of the "William Blake Suite." This series of songs brings to fruition Benís study in poetry and music as complementary art forms. Our performance career began with a ístanding room onlyí CD release show at the Nucleus Cafe in Eau Claire, WI. Wherever they play, the Ben Dobay Sextet strives to bring music to the community through inventive musicianship and honest poetry.