Archive for the 'Podcast' Category
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.
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.
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.
BONUS: I asked my parents and sister to record the intro for this episode. It did not go well.
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.
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.
Posted under Podcast
The Jazz Session turns eight today! To celebrate, I’ve put together a look back at eight years of the show, featuring interviews and music by many past guests, including: John Abercrombie, Carl Allen, Jen Baker & Kyoko Kitamura, Gene Bertoncini, Terence Blanchard, Don Byron, Ron Carter, Jimmy Heath, Janel & Anthony, Darius Jones & Matthew Shipp, Steve Kuhn, Jo Lawry, Gene Ludwig, Marian McPartland, Nadje Noordhuis, Laurie Pepper, Sonny Rollins, Gerald Wilson, and more.
Peter Apfelbaum’s latest release is an EP by his new band Sparkler called I Colored It In For You. In this interview, Apfelbaum talks about bringing the groove back to jazz; his upbringing in Berkeley; playing with Don Cherry; and his approach to composition and to leading bands. This interview features music by Sparkler, plus a tune from Apfelbaum’s upcoming solo album on Loove Arts and music by his New York Hieroglyphics band. Learn more at peterapfelbaum.com.
Saxophonist Rudresh Mahanthappa’s new album is Bird Calls (ACT, 2015). The album was inspired by the music of Charlie Parker, although Mahanthappa composed original music rather than play Parker’s tunes. In this interview, he talks about the reasoning behind that choice; how hearing Charlie Parker affected him as a teenager; and why the best tribute to Bird is to not play his music. Learn more about Rudresh Mahanthappa at rudreshm.com.
Originally from Boston, guitarist Bob Sneider has called Rochester, NY, home for years. He’s built an impressive career, beginning in Chuck Mangione’s band and then through his work at the Eastman School of Music and as the leader of his own ensembles. In this interview, Sneider talks about why he didn’t go to a conservatory and how he ended up as a professional musician anyway; many of the A-list musicians he’s played with over the years; his work at the Rochester International Jazz Festival; how teaching new guitarists helps him stay at the top of his game; and the rhythm section with whom he’s played for years. Learn more at bobsneider.net.
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