Nick Adams and the Aral Sea Divers play a lively blend of roaring 20s-era jazz, a testament to time when classical and military musical traditions were infused with fresh and exciting African American energy. “That’s a special moment in American history, a blending of aesthetic but rigid European styles with new raw energy, adding just the right amount of danger to the mix,” says founder Aaron Corte O’Brien.
The Aral Sea Divers have been reviving that original balance of orchestration and improvisation through traditional, and inventive, approaches to jazz standards. The group originated between university students in the Upper Peninsula, taking the spirit of Hemingway’s fictional character, adventurer and yooper “Nick Adams” as an elusive member of the group. In the UP the group played a variety of venues, including the Hiawatha Traditional Music Festival, Marquette Michigan Beer Festival, and a mix of breweries, retirement homes, and veteran’s centers. Aaron recently put a new lineup of the group back together after moving to Detroit with co-founder, clarinetist Audra Hagan, and they are looking forward to continue playing this timeless music throughout the city.