Archive for August, 2012

August 30th 2012
The Jazz Session #400: Donald Brown

Posted under Jazz Or Bust Tour & Pianists & Podcast

The Jazz Session celebrates 400 episodes with pianist, educator and former Jazz Messenger Donald Brown. This interview was recorded at Brown’s home in Knoxville, TN, during the first part of the “Jazz Or Bust” Tour. In this interview, Brown talks about his early days in Memphis; why writing music has always been important to him; his R&B roots; the injuries he sustained through improper technique and how they’ve affected his career; and his forthcoming recording project.

Note: Except for the first track, the music in this interview comes from Brown’s 2008 recording Fast Forward To The Past (Space Time Records). The first track is from a compilation called Tenors & Satin: The Knoxville Jazz Session.


August 27th 2012
The Jazz Session #399: Evan Cobb

Posted under Jazz Or Bust Tour & Podcast & Saxophonists

Woodwind player Evan Cobb’s 2011 CD Falling Up was recorded in the town he calls home, Nashville. In this interview, Cobb talks about his unlikely move to Nashville; the city’s jazz scene; the importance of playing multiple horns; how he knew he was ready to put out a record; and the effect of Nashville itself on his writing. Learn more at and follow him on Twitter at @evancobbjazz.

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August 23rd 2012
The Jazz Session #398: Rahsaan Barber

Posted under Jazz Or Bust Tour & Podcast & Saxophonists

Nashville saxophonist Rahsaan Barber’s most recent album is Everyday Magic (Jazz Music City, 2011). In this interview, Barber talks about deciding to establish his career in his hometown, even after living in New York; the jazz scene in Nashville and how he sees it evolving; and why there was never a chance that he and his brother Roland would become accountants. Learn more at and follow him on Twitter at @rjbsax.

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August 20th 2012
The Jazz Session #397: W.O. Smith Music School

Posted under Jazz Or Bust Tour & Podcast & Schools

Named after a pioneering African-American musician and educator (that’s W.O. Smith playing bass on Coleman Hawkins’ original “Body And Soul” recording), Nashville’s W.O. Smith Music School “makes affordable, quality music instruction available to children from low-income families. We transform lives through music.” In this interview, Executive Director Jonah Rabinowitz talks about the school’s origins; the mission it serves and the unique way it affords to offer its services; and the ambitious fundraising and community involvement that led to the school’s current state-of-the-art facility. Learn more at

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August 16th 2012
The Jazz Session #396: Denis Solee

Posted under Clarinetists & Jazz Or Bust Tour & Podcast & Saxophonists

Woodwind player Denis Solee has been a mainstay in the Nashville Studio scene since the early 1970s, recording with everyone from Ray Charles and Stan Getz to Loretta Lynn and Garth Brooks. In this interview, Solee talks about how Nashville has changed since his arrival; what a lifetime in the studios has meant for his career as a jazz player; and why repairing horns reminds him of drag racing.

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August 13th 2012
The Jazz Session #395: Nashville Jazz Workshop

Posted under Clubs & Schools

The Nashville Jazz Workshop is “a non-profit organization supporting jazz musicians, jazz fans, and the jazz community.” In this interview, co-founder and Director of Operations Roger Spencer talks about turning a decades-old unused industrial space into an oasis for jazz education and performance; why he’s unhappy with a lot of college jazz programs and how the Workshop’s approach is different; and the wide variety of amateurs and professionals who find a musical home at the Workshop. Learn more at

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August 9th 2012
The Jazz Session #394: Jeff Coffin

Posted under Jazz Or Bust Tour & Podcast & Saxophonists

Saxophonist Jeff Coffin’s forthcoming CD with his band the Mu’tet is Into The Air (Ear Up Records, available Sept. 4, 2012). Coffin has had an active career as a bandleader and educator, and also as a member of Bela Fleck & The Flecktones and now the Dave Matthews Band. In this interview, conducted at Coffin’s Nashville home, the saxophonist talks about revelatory experiences with the music of John Coltrane and Ornette Coleman; what he learned from his early teachers and how he tries to pay that learning forward; and how he pushes himself into new musical territory despite an intense touring schedule. Learn more at and follow him on Twitter at @JeffCoffinMusic.

NOTE: The music in this episode comes from three recordings — Mu’tet Live! (Ear Up Records, 2011); Duet (with Jeff Sipe; Compass Records, 2011); and Arc of the Circle (with Charlie Peacock; Runway Network, 2008).

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August 6th 2012
The Jazz Session #393: Robert Jospe

Posted under Drummers & Jazz Or Bust Tour & Podcast

Robert Jospe is a drummer and educator based in Charlottesville, VA. In this interview, recorded on the “Jazz Or Bust” Tour, Jospe talks about his involvement in the New York loft scene in the 1970s; his decision to relocate to Charlottesville and what it meant for his career; his approach to teaching rhythm and his belief that anyone can groove. Learn more at and follow him on Twitter at @rjospe.

Note: The music in this episode comes from Jospe’s 2006 album Heart Beat.

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August 2nd 2012
The Jazz Session #392: John D’earth

Posted under Jazz Or Bust Tour & Podcast & Trumpeters

Trumpeter John D’earth is a mainstay of the Charlottesville, VA, jazz scene. He’s been playing Thursday nights at Miller’s downtown for the past 30 years. He’s also a respected educator who teaches at the University of Virginia. In this interview, D’earth talks about how he and a group of musician friends chose to leave New York City behind and settle in Charlottesville; why lifelong learning is essential; how to bring more listeners into the jazz fold; and why he thinks music promotes better health. Learn more at

NOTE: The music in this interview comes from the album When The Serpent Flies by the Thompson D’earth band.

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