May 25th 2015
The Jazz Session #455: Ross Hammond

Posted under Guitarists & Podcast

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Guitarist Ross Hammond’s new album is Flight. The solo acoustic record marks a departure from his previous electric work. In this interview, recorded at Webster’s Bookstore Cafe in State College, PA, Hammond talks about why he’s playing acoustic these days, and 12-string in particular; his church background and how it led to some of the tunes on this album; the growing Sacramento jazz scene; and his upcoming projects. Learn more at www.rosshammond.com.

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May 11th 2015
The Jazz Session #454: Mimi Jones

Posted under Bassists & Podcast & Record Labels & Vocalists

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Bassist and vocalist Mimi Jones has a new album called Balance on her own Hot Tone Music label. In this interview, Jones talks about building community and why she started her own label; the life challenges that led to this album; the power of names; and her extensive upcoming touring schedule. Learn more at mimijonesmusic.com. Also, be sure to check out the other new Hot Tone releases by Camille Thurman and Shirazette Tinnin.

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May 4th 2015
The Jazz Session #453: Red Wierenga

Posted under Accordionists & Pianists & Podcast

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Pianist Red Wierenga is a member of the Respect Sextet and the Respect Trio. He also plays accordion in the Claudia Quintet. In this interview, he talks about three new recordings: Respect ‘n’ You: Live At Greenwich House Music School by the Respect Sextet; Respect The Trio, We Says by the Respect Trio; and Figure, a duo project between Wierenga and guitarist Ryan Ferreira. He also talks about his forays into electronic music and instrument building; his work with the Claudia Quintet; and the influence on his music of Dutch pianist Misha Mengelberg. Learn more at respectsextet.bandcamp.com.

April 22nd 2015
The Jazz Session #452: Ras Moshe

Posted under Podcast & Saxophonists

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Ras Moshe is a saxophonist who also creates spaces for other musicians to flourish. In this interview, he talks about the intersection of political activism and music; his father and grandfather, both of whom were saxophonists; his early exposure to the loft scene in New York City; and the work he’s doing both as a saxophonist and a creator of musical opportunities for others.

April 13th 2015
The Jazz Session #451: Natalie Cressman, Emily Asher & Angela Davis

Posted under Podcast & Saxophonists & Trombonists

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On this episode, three musicians who’ve recently been on the show, and even more recently recorded new albums: Natalie Cressman talks about Turn The Sea; Emily Asher introduces Meet Me In The Morning; and Angela Davis tells the story behind Lady Luck.

April 6th 2015
The Jazz Session #450: Cat Toren

Posted under Pianists & Podcast

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Cat Toren is a Canadian pianist living in New York. She’s about to release an album called Inside The Sun featuring music she’s written since moving to New York five years ago. This episode contains a sneak peek at some music from that album. In this interview, Toren talks about making the switch from classical piano to jazz; choosing between New York City and Berlin; finding ways to be contemplative in one of the world’s largest cities; and why she feels improvisation is a collective activity. Learn more at cat-toren.com.

March 23rd 2015
The Jazz Session #449: Jasmine Lovell-Smith

Posted under Podcast & Saxophonists

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Soprano saxophonist Jasmine Lovell-Smith’s debut album is Fortune Songs. In this interview, Lovell-Smith talks about the long road from her native New Zealand to Brooklyn to Connecticut to her current home in Mexico; why she stopped playing music, and how she found the inspiration to start again; her early love of Stan Getz and Sonny Rollins; and her upcoming recording projects. Learn more at jasminelovellsmith.com.

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March 16th 2015
The Jazz Session #448: Mike Bono

Posted under Guitarists & Podcast

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Guitarist Mike Bono’s first album is From Where You Are. In this interview, Bono talks about discovering jazz on the radio as a teenager and how it changed his life; the sweet pizza-parlor gig that helped him learn standards; his time at the Berklee school of music; and his recent appearance at the Sundance Film Festival in a tribute to Nina Simone. Learn more at mikebonomusic.com.

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BONUS: I asked my parents and sister to record the intro for this episode. It did not go well.

March 9th 2015
The Jazz Session #447: Reggie Quinerly

Posted under Drummers & Podcast

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Drummer Reggie Quinerly’s new album is Invictus (Redefinition Music, 2015). In this interview, he talks about how a poem from the 19th century informs his career and writing; why he wanted to make an album that doesn’t sound like a “drummer’s record;” his relationship with one of his mentors, Lester Grant; and the need for musicians to control their own destinies. Learn more at reggiequinerly.com.

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March 2nd 2015
The Jazz Session #446: Akua Dixon

Posted under Cellists & Podcast

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Cellist Akua Dixon has just released a self-titled solo album that features arrangements she’s written for a variety of ensembles and occasions, but never had the chance to record. In this interview, Dixon talks about her career as a performer and arranger, going all the way back to the band at the Apollo; the traditional and innovative ways she arranges for string quartet; the shameful lack of African-American musicians in American orchestras today; and her time playing with many musical giants, including Max Roach. Learn more at akuadixon.com.

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