Jason Crane interviews pianist Misha Piatigorsky. Misha fled with his family from Russia during the height of the Cold War and ended up in New Jersey. A classically trained pianist, he discovered jazz and fell in love with the music, ending up at Rutgers studying with Kenny Barron. He won the 2004 Thelonious Monk Composers Competition. He’s also the pianist and musical director for singing legend Mark Murphy. Mishaâ€™s new trio with bassist Hans Glawischnig and drummer Ari Hoenig is a fusion of hip-hop grooves with his non-traditional jazz compositions. Their new record is Uncommon Circumstance (MISHAMUSIC, 2007). Find out more at mishamusic.com.
Jason Crane interviews Japanese pianist Toru Dodo. Born in Tokyo, Dodo started playing piano at age 4, then gave up his dream of concert piano for the economics department at Tokyo’s Meiji University. He found jazz at Meiji, and eventually came to the United States to study at Berklee College of Music. Since moving to New York City in 1998, Dodo has released three CDs and performed with Kenny Garret, Benny Golson, Curtis Fuller, Ruth Brown and Terumasa Hino. His new album is Dodo 3 (Jazzcity, 2006). Find out more at torudodo.com.
Jason Crane interviews French guitarist Francis Jacob. Jacob’s career has taken him around the world: France, Switzerland, Boston, Brazil, Paris and now New York. Along the way, he’s picked up a gift for improvisation and a taste for West African music. On his new CD, Side By Side (2006), he combines his many influences and creates two albums in one — the same tunes, played by two wonderfully different bands. Find out more at FrancisJacob.com.
Here’s my All About Jazz interview with fellow podcaster Joe Vella. Joe’s newest project is the Traneumentary, a multi-part podcast documentary on John Coltrane.
Jason Crane interviews guitarist John Abercrombie, whose forthcoming record is The Third Quartet (ECM, 2007). Abercrombie has been on more than 50 ECM recordings as a leader or sideman, including sessions with Charles Lloyd, Kenny Wheeler, Jack DeJohnette, Dave Liebman and Dave Holland. This interview features several excerpts from the new CD in advance of its April 3 release. You’ll also hear Abercrombie’s moving remembrance of lifelong friend Michael Brecker.