Trumpeter Amir ElSaffar’s new CD is Inana (Pi Recordings, 2011). In this interview, ElSaffar explains maqam music and his decision to spend five years studying it in depth; how he plays microtonal music on a standard Bb trumpet; and his particular combination of traditional Arabic music with jazz. Learn more at amirelsaffar.com and follow him on Twitter at @amirelsaffar.
Guitarist Mike Baggetta’s new CD is Source Materials. In this interview, Baggetta talks about his compositional process and how he writes for specific ensembles; his experiments with prepared guitar in both solo and duet formats; and how he approaches playing standards. Learn more at mikebaggetta.com and follow him on Twitter at @mabnotes.
Pianist Joan Stiles’ new CD is Three Musicians, featuring Joel Frahm and Matt Wilson. In this interview, Stiles talks about playing without a bassist; how visual art and music come together in her life; and her collage-based approach to playing standards. Learn more at joanstilesmusic.com.
Trumpeter Tim Hagans’ new CD is The Moon Is Waiting (Palmetto Records, 2011). In this interview, Hagans talks about his special relationship with his drummer of choice; how he worked with a choreographer to write some of the music on the new album; and how he’s evolved over the years as a composer for large and small ensembles. Learn more at timhagans.com.
Vocalist Andrea Wolper’s new CD is Parallel Lives (Jazzed Media, 2011). In this interview, Wolper talks about her unfettered and very personal approach to song choice and performance; how poetry influences her work; and her parallel life as an activist for social justice. Learn more at andreawolper.com and follow her on Twitter at @AndreaWolper.