"The concert was inspiring in every way...Conductor Jason Eckl was a triple threat...an inspired leader, a brilliant arranger, and a genial host."
- Piedmont Post
- The BOHEMIAN
If there’s one piece of advice I would give to anyone interested in seeing this group perform, it would be to expect the unexpected, or better yet, leave your expectations at the door and go in prepared for a ride. If there’s one thing that’s for certain, it’s that this writer will be catching them again the next time they perform in town.
- NAPA VALLEY REGISTER
"under the baton of co-founder, guitarist and conductor Jason Eckl,[the Renegade Orchestra] turn Nina Simone’s “Sinnerman” into a shimmering string-centric odyssey, capture the classic helter-skelter vibe in Paul McCartney’s and John Lennon’s “Helter Skelter,” find the funk in “What’d I Say” by Ray Charles and crash with vibratory verve through Jimi Hendrix’s “Purple Haze.”
- EAST BAY EXPRESS
To be a renegade means to defy an established set of rules and principles. As Eckl noted several times throughout the night, the musicians who joined him on stage were brave for breaking free from traditional notions of classical music. By the end of the performance, they proved that strings don’t just belong at the symphony — they’re made for rock and roll.
- THE DAily Californian
Welcome to the Renegade Orchestra - it’s time to throw out all the old conventions of a quiet, sleepy, stuffy show of musicians locked in straight jackets of tradition.
Clap your hands, tap your feet, and yell all you want - the Renegade Orchestra embraces the virtuosic skills of top bay area musicians and turns them loose on songs orchestras have never done or maybe shouldn’t do.
No sleepy pop songs, no overly-lush jazz standards, but the pure unbridled fury of what an orchestra can truly do.
The Renegade Orchestra contains the beauty of a classical symphony with the heart of a rock band by combining virtuosic musicians and a hard-driving rhythm section. "
- The Bohemian
The Bay Area's Renegade Orchestra will perform a concert at the Piedmont Center for the Arts on Saturday, September 11 at noon. This outdoor concert and socially distant show will feature an unconventional orchestra performing on the beautiful lawn in front of the Piedmont Center for the Arts.
Watching YouTube videos of Renegade Orchestra perform at the Brooklyn Basin in Oakland and at the Blue Note Jazz Club in Napa, it occurs to me that betrayal is a good thing. I’m talking about a group of string musicians...
EAST BAY EXPRESS
THE RICHMOND STANDARD
Reps describe the Bay Area orchestra as “throwing out all the conventions of a quiet, sleepy, stuffy show of musicians locked in straitjackets of tradition.” Audience members can expect virtuosic orchestra musicians with a “hard drivin’ rhythm section” that will perform wide-ranging works from composers like Nina Simone, Miles Davis, the Mamas and the Papas and the disco queen herself, Donna Summer.
NAPA VALLEY REGISTER
Last week I had the privilege of seeing a live music performance put on by what might be one of my new favorite local acts, and that would be a not-so-little group called the Renegade Orchestra.
There’s nothing quite like the life of a musician.
We spoke with Jason Eckl on his cellphone just before his band embarked to perform for a group of Icelandic whale watchers.
“We’re looking at snow-covered mountains and this sharp, valleyed fjord and a boat that is just a bit smaller than we expected,” he said.
When I asked Jason Eckl, conductor of the Renegade Orchestra, what the group was about, he responded, “the pure unbridled fury of what an orchestra can truly do.” Dang.
Formed from a mix of orchestra instrumentalists, the project takes as its starting point the oft-forgotten truth that local classical musicians are amazing at what they do.
The DaiLy CAliFORNIAN
When someone goes to an orchestra, they don’t expect to hear Led Zeppelin — that is, unless they’re going to see the Renegade Orchestra.
Self-described as having “the beauty of a symphony, the soul of a rock band,” the Renegade Orchestra’s musical stylings are vast.