Archive for December, 2011

December 30th 2011
The Jazz Session #333: Sam Rivers (1923-2011)

Posted under Podcast & Saxophonists

NOTE: I’m reposting this 2009 interview with Sam Rivers to commemorate his passing on Dec. 26, 2011. Nate Chinen has collected many of the remembrances of Rivers on his blog.


Sam Rivers is a musical renaissance man. He’s performed in big bands, bop bands, R&B groups, blues bands and free-jazz ensembles. Rivers is currently composing adventurous large-ensemble music (such as is found on his 2006 CD Aurora) in an unlikely location: Orlando, Florida. In this interview, Rivers talks about his early days in Boston; how he was recruited by Jimi Hendrix while playing with Cecil Taylor; and how a tour with Dizzy Gillespie led to his relocation to Florida. Learn more at

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December 26th 2011
The Jazz Session #332: Enoch Smith, Jr.

Posted under Pianists & Podcast

Pianist Enoch Smith, Jr.’s new album is Misfits (Music4mypeople, 2011). In this interview, Smith talks about growing up in the church in Rochester, NY; how he’s always felt like an outsider in the jazz world; and why he wanted his new record to get back to basics — groove and the voice. Learn more at

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December 22nd 2011
The Jazz Session #331: James Hirschfeld

Posted under Podcast & Trombonists

Trombonist James Hirschfeld has just released his first album, Two Medicine. In this interview, Hirschfeld talks about his life in music; the song-like quality of his compositions; and how a trip to Germany solidified his desire to pursue an artistic life. Learn more at and buy the record via Follow him on Twitter at @jameshirschfeld.

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December 19th 2011
The Jazz Session #330: Andrew Cyrille

Posted under Drummers

Andrew Cyrille’s new CD is Route De Freres (TUM, 2011) with his band Haitian Fascination. In this interview, Cyrille talks about his own Haitian roots and his early childhood in Brooklyn; Haitian rhythms and how they’re expressed on this new record; and the sound paintings that form the main suite, “Route De Freres.”

NOTE: I wrote a poem inspired by Andrew Cyrille’s story. You can read it here.


December 15th 2011
The Jazz Session #329: Adam Schatz

Posted under Promoters & Saxophonists

Adam Schatz is the founder of Search & Restore, which opened its doors in late 2007 and has since become a 501(c)3 non-profit committed to bringing the artists and audiences of new jazz and improvised music together in new ways. In this interview, Schatz talks about the musical components of the organization’s mission and his own pursuits as a performing musician. Learn more about Search & Restore at and about their current fundraising efforts at The fundraiser runs through Dec. 19, 2011.

NOTE: This interview is a companion piece to my video conversation with Schatz, which you’ll find at JazzDIY’s site,


December 12th 2011
The Jazz Session #328: Michael Bates

Posted under Bassists & Podcast

Michael Bates’s new album is called Acrobat: Music For, And By, Dmitri Shostakovich (Sunnyside, 2011). In this interview, Bates talks about the appeal of Shostakovich the man and the composer; how he used Shostakovich’s music as a starting point for his own compositions and improvisations; and the new trio music he’s been working on. Learn more at

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