CMA Jazz on Main kicks off September 12th with Noel Freidline

Noel Freidline The Columbia Museum of Art presents the first concert in the new, world-class jazz series, "CMA Jazz on Main," under the artistic direction of internationally renowned band leader Noel Freidline on Friday, September 12, 2014, at 7:30 p.m. The two-concert pilot season last year was a phenomenal success. With the generous support of Dr. Serbin and his partners at Family Medicine Centers of South Carolina, the Museum is proud to present the exciting new series bringing amazing, hot jazz performances to the elegant setting of the DuBose-Poston Reception Hall.


"We are very excited about the coming season of Jazz on Main," says Leslie Pierce, CMA director of adult programs. "The concerts transform the ambience of the Museum into the feel of a cool, laid-back jazz club with soft lighting, a snazzy bar, and wine bottles at nice table seating that really puts the audience in the right mood for exceptional jazz music. The night almost has a velvet feel to it."


The inaugural concert features Nelson Rangell joined by the acclaimed Noel Freidline Trio for an amazing evening of contemporary and straight ahead jazz. Jazziz magazine writes that Nelson Rangell is "an artist of depth, a master of song, and an improviser nonpareil." The Times of London notes "his extraordinary facility on a range of instruments and his undoubted virtuosity," adding that Nelson is "one of fusion's most accomplished exponents."


Such praise is a confirmation of what contemporary jazz fans have known since the Denver-based saxophonist emerged in the late 80s: that Rangell is one of the most exciting and diverse performers in the genre, equally adept at soprano, alto, and tenor saxophone, as well as being a genuine virtuoso on flute and piccolo.


"I'm embarking on a new chapter in my career," says Rangell. "I've been very blessed to have been a participant in the contemporary jazz scene for the past 30 years. The modern and 'popular' jazz scene is undergoing a lot of change. I think for the better. I believe it will be a creative and exciting period for many artists. I hope my performance at 'CMA Jazz on Main' with the excellent Noel Freidline Trio will be a reflection of this. I thank my friend John Baker for bringing me to Columbia for the first time."


Pianist, vocalist, composer, arranger, and educator, Noel Freidline has led his own band since 1992. He is currently a lecturer in music at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, is the director of the Lake Norman Big Band (Mooresville, NC), and the artistic director of the new Center City 6th & Tryon Jazz Series in Charlotte, NC.


"I couldn't be happier with how well this series has been received," says Freidline. "And to have the ability to kick off the new season with an artist such as Nelson Rangell is an absolute privilege. The description 'world-class' gets thrown around a lot these days, but Nelson Rangell is truly the embodiment of that phrase. His career speaks for itself, but Nelson is unique in the depth and breadth of musicality and diversity that he can bring to a bandstand. Respect amongst your peers is the hardest-won achievement for performers, and jazz musicians think of Nelson as 'the real deal'."


"I really can't wait to see the 2014-2015 Jazz on Main season unfold," Freidline continues. "We have had such great momentum due in large part to the excellent Columbia audience that has come out and taken part in some spectacular evenings. Every musician who has thus performed has commented to me how great the venue is and especially how wonderful the audiences have been. We simply can't thank Columbia enough for making us feel so welcome."


Based out of Charlotte, N.C., the famous swinging repertoire of Noel Freidline's band mines the best of every genre, from the swing of Duke Ellington to the gritty sincerity of Bonnie Rait, from soulful and edgy reinterpretations of Patti Page to Africanized arrangements of Simon & Garfunkel. Vocally driven, their sound is characterized by sophisticated arrangements that always retain a playful element of spontaneity.


Upcoming concerts in the 2014-2015 season:

  • Celebrating the Great American Songbook - Friday, November 14, 2014
  • Oscar, Ahmad & George: Three Legends of Piano Jazz - Friday, January 16, 2015
  • Tribute to the Swing Bands - Friday, April 17, 2015


Doors open at 7:00 p.m.Concert at 7:30 p.m. Cash Bar.

Season Tickets: $130/ $90 for members

Individual Seats: $35 / $28 for members / $5 students

Premier Table Seating:

$300 6 guests & 2 bottles of wine $200 4 guests & 1 bottle of wine



Tickets and program information can be found at