Holland, Dave (actually, David)

views updated

Holland, Dave (actually, David)

Holland, Dave(actually, David), influential jazz bassist, cello/piano/composer; b Wolverhampton, Warwickshire, England, Oct. 1, 1946. He started with the ukulele at age four, moving to the guitar at 10 and then to electric bass guitar at 13. He began playing professionally two years later. It was around this time that he began listening to jazz and began playing the acoustic bass. In fall 1963, he moved to London; soon after, he began studying classical bass while also working with a wide variety of people in the jazz community. He became a regular accompanist at London’s famed jazz club, Ronnie Scott’s, in 1967; it was during an engagement there in July of 1968 that Miles Davis first heard him and asked him to join his band. Holland moved to N.Y. a few weeks later and for the next two years toured and appeared on a number of recordings with Davis including In a Silent Way and Bitches Brew. In late 1970 Holland left Davis and together with Chick Corea, Anthony Braxton and Barry Altschul founded the group Circle. It was at this time that he started performing on cello as well as bass. After working together for a year Circle disbanded, and early in 1972 Holland joined Stan Getz’s group, with whom he remained through early 1973. He then began concentrating on working separately with Anthony Braxton and Sam Rivers. In 1975 he took part in the formation of Gateway, a trio with John Abercrombie and Jack Dejohnette, fellow band members from the Davis band; Gateway continued to tour and record through the 1990s. After working with Betty Carter for a few months in 1976, he spent the remainder of the decade touring and recording with Sam Rivers. In 1981 he left Rivers’s band to put together his own quintet that recorded and toured extensively until 1987. In the 1990s, Holland has recorded and toured as a member of Herbie Hancock’s groups, as well as continuing to work with Gateway. He has also led his own small groups. Holland has also worked as a jazz educator. In 1983 he was appointed artistic director of the summer jazz workshop at the Banff School in Banff, Canada, a position he held until 1990, and from 1987 to 1990 he was a full time faculty member of the New England Cons, of Music in Boston.


Music for Two Basses (1971); Conference of the Birds (1972); D. H., Vols. 1, 2 (1976); D. H., Sam Rivers (1976); Emerald Tears (1977; bass); Life Cycle (1982; cello); Jumpiri’ In (1983); Seeds of Time (1984); Razor’s Edge (1987); Triplicate (1988); Extensions (1989); Ones All (1993; bass); Dream of the Elders (1995); Points of View (1997). Gateway: Homecoming (1994).

—Lewis Porter

About this article

Holland, Dave (actually, David)

Updated About encyclopedia.com content Print Article