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Jack DeJohnette: Colors, Grooves, Golden Beams

By Published: August 14, 2006
AAJ: Do you have any favorite bands, of the ones you've played in?

JD: Well, I played with Coltrane, for a week at least, with Rashied Ali and Alice [Coltrane] and Pharoah [Sanders]. That was really tremendous. I also worked with Thelonious Monk, which was really a challenge, and fun as well, And, you know, the Charles Lloyd Quartet, which Keith and I were both in. Working with McCoy Tyner. Joe Henderson. And Henry Grimes—we did a week at Slug's and I have a recording of that, if I can find it somewhere. That was really great. Playing and recording with Freddie Hubbard. Playing with Miles, with Herbie [Hancock] and Ron [Carter], and then again when he went into his electric period with Chick [Corea] and Dave [Holland] and Wayne [Shorter] and then moving into Michael Henderson and Gary Bartz and Keith and Chick together.

And then some of my bands. The Directions band with John Abercrombie. My Special Edition bands, with the different cast of characters who went in and out of there. The last being Greg Osby, Gary Thomas, Lonnie Plaxico, and Mick Goodrick, who's really amazing.

Jack DeJohnetteOh, I want to tell about a few more things that I've been involved with. I have a Latin project, which is a sextet. We played about two or three years ago at the Montreal Jazz Festival, when I was one of the host artists there. I did four nights with different bands. I did one night with a trio with Herbie and Dave Holland, another night with Foday Musa Suso, then with Bobby McFerren, and then the Latin project—which was kind of inspired by Don Byron's Music For Six Musicians (Blue Note, 1995). We do some of those pieces, but also some original stuff from me and from [pianist] Edsel Gomez. The band consists of two more percussionists: Luisito Quintero, on timbales and bongos, and the great Giovanni Hidalgo on the congas. Jerome Harris, again, on the electric bass, and Byron on tenor saxophone and clarinet. We did some APAP [Association of Performing Arts Presenters] tours, about eight concerts in America at the colleges, which went down really well. I haven't recorded the band yet, but it created a lot of excitement and the guys have been asking me when we'll play again. It's really exciting—a lot of drumming! We're a great percussion section. And of course Edsel was pretty wild too. It's a great collection of characters, and the chemistry's great.

I also have a duet project that I've been doing over the years with David Sancious, the keyboardist. He lives up here in Woodstock. I have a number of situations that I do where I don't rehearse anything; one is with Bobby McFerrin, and the other one is David and myself, and we just recently did a concert here in upstate New York at the West Kortright Centre. It was really fantastic, so somewhere down the line, maybe we'll put something out with that.

Anyway [laughing], I'm not doing too much, as you can tell.

AAJ: Yeah, I was going to suggest that you might want to actually start doing something instead of slacking off in upstate New York. You know, it really seems that you have more options than ever with your label to release all these projects.

JD: Yeah. It's a great time. It's funny—did you see the American Masters program on Bob Dylan?

AAJ: No Direction Home? Yes, I liked it so much I bought the DVD.

JD: One of the things that my wife and I, and some other friends who were around in those times, were saying was that it was about substance then: what have you got to say? There were a lot of areas, a lot of people pushing the boundaries of things. And we need more of that. Not just music. We need new people. We need to open up to things. Not to say that people aren't doing those things, or thinking those ways that they did then. But we need to open up the channels to get this new surge of practical-but-creative, organic ideas to make this a better place for life to exist.

Selected Discography

Jack DeJohnette Featuring Bill Frisell, The Elephant Sleeps But Still Remembers (Golden Beams Productions, 2006)

Trio Beyond, Saudades (ECM Records, 2006)

Miles Davis, The Cellar Door Sessions 1970 (Columbia/Legacy, 2005)

The Ripple Effect, Hybrids (Golden Beams Productions, 2005)

Jack DeJohnette/Foday Musa Suso, Music From the Hearts of the Masters (Golden Beams Productions, 2005)

Jack DeJohnette, Music in the Key of Om (Golden Beams Productions, 2005)

Carli Muñoz, Maverick (Pelosenel Q Lo Records, 2005)

Keith Jarrett/Gary Peacock/Jack DeJohnette, The Out-of-Towners (ECM Records, 2004)

Don Byron, Ivey-Divey (Blue Note, 2004)

Jack DeJohnette, :rarum XII: Selected Recordings (ECM Records, 2004)

Geri Allen, The Life of a Song (Telarc, 2004)

Alice Coltrane, Translinear Light (Impulse!, 2004)

Keith Jarrett/Gary Peacock/Jack DeJohnette,
Up For It (ECM Records, 2003)

Miles Davis, The Complete Jack Johnson Sessions (Columbia/Legacy, 2003)

John Surman, Free and Equal (ECM Records, 2003)

Miroslav Vitous, Universal Syncopations (ECM Records, 2003)

Keith Jarrett/Gary Peacock/Jack DeJohnette, Always Let Me Go (ECM Records, 2002)

John Surman/Jack DeJohnette, Invisible Nature (ECM Records, 2002)

Wadada Leo Smith's Golden Quartet, The Year of the Elephant (Pi Recordings, 2002)

Miles Davis, The Complete In a Silent Way Sessions (Columbia/Legacy, 2001)

Keith Jarrett/Gary Peacock/Jack DeJohnette, Inside Out (ECM Records, 2001)

Miles Davis, Live at the Fillmore East (March 7, 1970): It's About That Time (Columbia/Legacy, 2001)

Michael Brecker, Nearness of You: the Ballad Book (Verve, 2001)

Jack Wilkins, Reunion (Chiaroscuro Jazz, 2001)

Eliane Elias, Everything I Love (Blue Note, 2000)

Sonny Rollins, This Is What I Do (Milestone, 2000)

Antonio Faraò, Thorn (Enja, 2000)

Wadada Leo Smith, Wadada Leo Smith's Golden Quartet (Tzadik, 2000)

Keith Jarrett/Gary Peacock/Jack DeJohnette, Whisper Not (ECM Records, 2000)

Don Byron, Romance With the Unseen (Blue Note, 1999)

Miles Davis, The Complete Bitches Brew Sessions (Columbia/Legacy, 1998)

World Saxophone Quartet Featuring Jack DeJohnette, Selim Sivad (Justin Time, 1998)

Keith Jarrett/Gary Peacock/Jack DeJohnette, Tokyo '96 (ECM Records, 1998)

Kevin Hays, Andalucia (Blue Note, 1997)

Renee Rosnes, As We Are Now (Blue Note, 1997)

Kenny Werner Trio, A Delicate Balance (RCA Victor, 1997)

Mike Stern, Give and Take (Atlantic Jazz, 1997)

Jack DeJohnette, Oneness (ECM Records, 1997)

Chris Potter, Unspoken (Concord, 1997)

Herbie Hancock, The New Standard (Verve, 1996)

Sonny Rollins, Plus 3 (Milestone, 1996)

Gateway, In the Moment (ECM Records, 1996)

Jack DeJohnette, Dancing With Nature Spirits (ECM Records, 1996)

Michael Brecker, Tales From the Hudson (Impulse!, 1996)

Gateway, Homecoming (ECM Records, 1995)

Keith Jarrett Trio, At the Blue Note: the Complete Recordings (ECM Records, 1995)

Keith Jarrett Trio, Standards in Norway (ECM Records, 1995)

Ernie Watts, Unity (JVC, 1995)

Jack DeJohnette, Extra Special Edition (Blue Note, 1994) Keith Jarrett/Gary Peacock/Jack DeJohnette, Bye Bye Blackbird (ECM Records, 1993)

Danilo Pérez, Danilo Perez (Novus, 1993)

Lyle Mays, Fictionary (Warner Bros, 1993)

Joe Lovano, Universal Language (Blue Note, 1993)

Jack DeJohnette, Music For the Fifth World (Manhattan, 1992)

Gonzalo Rubalcaba, The Blessing (Blue Note, 1991)

Keith Jarrett/Gary Peacock/Jack DeJohnette, The Cure (ECM Records, 1991)

Jack DeJohnette's Special Edition, Earthwalk (Blue Note, 1991)

Keith Jarrett/Gary Peacock/Jack DeJohnette, Tribute (ECM Records, 1990)

Jack DeJohnette, Parallel Realities (MCA, 1990)

Keith Jarrett/Gary Peacock/Jack DeJohnette, Changeless (ECM Records, 1989)

Jack DeJohnette's Special Edition, Audio-Visualscapes (Impulse!, 1988)

Keith Jarrett/Gary Peacock/Jack DeJohnette, Still Live (ECM Records, 1988)

Dave Holland Trio, Triplicate (ECM Records, 1988)

David Murray/Jack DeJohnette, In Our Style (DIW, 1987)

Jack DeJohnette's Special Edition, Irresistable Forces (MCA/Impulse!, 1987)

Pat Metheny/Ornette Coleman, Song X (Geffen, 1986)

Keith Jarrett/Gary Peacock/Jack DeJohnette, Standards Live (ECM Records, 1986)

Jack DeJohnette, Zebra (MCA, 1986)

Jack DeJohnette, The Jack DeJohnette Piano Album (Landmark, 1985)

Keith Jarrett/Gary Peacock/Jack DeJohnette, Standards, Vol. 2 (ECM Records, 1985)

Jack DeJohnette, Works (ECM Records, 1985)

Jack DeJohnette's Special Edition, Album Album (ECM Records, 1984)

Keith Jarrett/Gary Peacock/Jack DeJohnette, Changes (ECM Records, 1984)

Kenny Wheeler, Double, Double You (ECM Records, 1984)

John Abercrombie, Night (ECM Records, 1984)

Keith Jarrett/Gary Peacock/Jack DeJohnette, Standards, Vol. 1 (ECM Records, 1983)

Jack DeJohnette's Special Edition, Inflation Blues (ECM Records, 1983)

Gary Peacock, Voice From the Past: Paradigm (ECM Records, 1982)

John Surman/Jack DeJohnette, The Amazing Adventures of Simon Simon (ECM Records, 1981)

Jack DeJohnette's Special Edition, Tin Can Alley (ECM Records, 1981)

Terje Rypdal/Miroslav Vitous/Jack DeJohnette, To Be Continued (ECM Records, 1981)

Pat Metheny, 80/81 (ECM Records, 1980)

Jack DeJohnette New Directions In Europe (ECM Records, 1980)

Jack DeJohnette, Special Edition (ECM Records, 1980

Richard Beirach, Elm (ECM Records, 1979)

George Adams, Sound Suggestions (ECM Records, 1979)

Terje Rypdal/Miroslav Vitous/Jack DeJohnette, Terje Rypdal, Miroslav Vitous, Jack DeJohnette (ECM Records, 1979)

Ralph Towner, Batik (ECM Records, 1978)

Kenny Wheeler, Deer Wan (ECM Records, 1978)

Gateway, Gateway 2 (ECM Records, 1978)

Jack DeJohnette, New Directions (ECM Records, 1978)

Jan Garbarek, Places (ECM Records, 1978)

Jack DeJohnette's Directions, New Rags (ECM Records, 1977)

Jack DeJohnette, Pictures (ECM Records, 1977)

Gary Peacock, Tales of Another (ECM Records, 1977)

Collin Walcott, Cloud Dance (ECM Records, 1976)

Kenny Wheeler, Gnu High (ECM Records, 1976)

Jack DeJohnette's Directions, Untitled (ECM Records, 1976)

Jack DeJohnette, Cosmic Chicken (Prestige, 1975)

Gateway, Gateway (ECM Records, 1975)

John Abercrombie, Timeless (ECM Records, 1975)

Steve Kuhn, Trance (ECM Records, 1975)

Jack DeJohnette, Sorcery (Prestige, 1974)

Sadao Watanabe, Round Trip (Vanguard, 1974)

Keith Jarrett/Jack DeJohnette, Ruta and Daitya (ECM Records, 1973)

Miles Davis, Black Beauty (Columbia, 1973)

Richard Davis Trio, Song For Wounded Knee (Flying Dutchman, 1973)

Miles Davis, On the Corner (Columbia, 1972)

Compost, Take Off Your Body (Columbia, 1972)

Miles Davis, Live-Evil (Columbia, 1972)

George Benson, Beyond the Blue Horizon (CTI, 1971)

Jack DeJohnette, Have You Heard? (Milestone, 1971)

Charles Lloyd, Flowering of the Original Charles Lloyd Quartet (Atlantic, 1971)

Miles Davis, At Fillmore (Columbia, 1970)

Joe Henderson, Power to the People (Milestone, 1970)

Miles Davis, Bitches Brew (Columbia, 1970)

Wayne Shorter, Super Nova (Blue Note, 1970)

Miroslav Vitous, Infinite Search (Embryo, 1970)

Chick Corea, Is (Solid State, 1970)

Charles Lloyd, In the Soviet Union (Atlantic, 1970)

Charles Lloyd, Soundtrack (Atlantic, 1970)

Jack DeJohnette, The DeJohnette Complex (Milestone, 1969)

Cedar Walton, Spectrum (Prestige, 1968)

Jackie McLean, Demon's Dance (Blue Note, 1968)

Bill Evans Trio, Live at Montreux Jazz Festival (Verve, 1968)

Charles Lloyd, In Europe (Atlantic, 1968)

Charles Lloyd, Love-in (Atlantic, 1967)

Charles Lloyd Quartet, Journey Within (Atlantic, 1967)

Charles Lloyd, Forest Flower (Atlantic, 1967)

Related Articles

Jack Johnson & Jack DeJohnette in London (Concert Review, 2005)

Jack DeJohnette Latin Project (Concert Review, 2005)

Jack DeJohnette/John Surman in Seattle (Concert Review, 2004)

Metheny, Holland, DeJohnette Play Benefit for Youth Center (Concert Review, 2004)

A Fireside Chat With Jack DeJohnette (Interview, 2003)

Meet Jack DeJohnette (Interview, 2002)

Photo Credits

First Photo: Jimmy Katz / Courtesy of ECM Records

Second Photo: Roberto Cifarelli / Phocus Agency / Courtesy of ECM Records

Photo of Trio Beyond: Roberto Cifarelli / Phocus Agency / Courtesy of ECM Records

Bottom Photo: Roberto Masotti / Courtesy of ECM Records

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