Being Here: Conversations On Creating Music Radhika Philip 461 pages ISBN: 13:978-0-989-488006 Radhio.org 2013 Imagine having conversations with a large, diverse group of jazz musicians; old and young, both those who have been around for years and those relatively new to the scene. Radhika Philip has done just that, and documented their reflections in her book. The interviews were carried out in various places, including Philip's home, musicians' homes and various locations around New York. Philip is fully aware of New York's importance as a crucible for creativity and also the importance ...read more
Being Here: Conversations On Creating Music Radhika Philip 461 pages ISBN: 13:978-0-989-488006 Radio.org 2013 New York has been the incubator for much of the most dynamic music in the history of jazz. For Bombay-born anthropologist Radhika Philip, witnessing one gig in Smalls was a life-changer. Seduced by the energy of the performance, the thrilling improvisations and the musicians' joyous communication, Philip was inspired to interview some of today's greatest improvisers and composers in order to better understand what exactly makes them click. In these candid conversations, 25 leading musicians shed light on ...read more
There is little doubt that saxophonist Chris Potter is one of the most important jazz artists of the modern era. Comfortable in a variety of jazz settings, the artist has contributed to several ECM Records-produced albums, yet The Sirens marks his leadership debut for the Germany-based label. Intense, passionate and a dazzling soloist who is a master at building tension and spiraling a given piece towards climactic pinnacles, this production focuses on Potter's holistic talent. With the ambient ECM Records recording qualities, Potter's often complex compositions are often fabricated on lyrically resplendent themes amid cresting finales and his vocal-like qualities. ...read more
Saxophonist Chris Potter has consistently shown a deep feeling for jazz tradition and a willingness to modernize his vocabulary at the same time. The lyricism of Lester Young, the fearlessness of Charlie Parker, the keening spiritualism of John Coltrane and the tireless creativity of Sonny Rollins all inspire him, as do funk, electric set-ups and classical music, and this openness has increasingly colored his discography with the passing years. The Sirens, Potter's debt for ECM as leader, is a return to an all-acoustic setting and is inspired by Homer's 8th century poem The Odyssey"-- a source of inspiration through the ...read more
Chris Potter QuartetChris' Jazz CaféPhiladelphia, PAFebruary 22, 2013Although no longer considered the essential destination for working jazz groups that it once was, Philadelphia is still visited by high-level talent from New York that occasionally ventures south to perform in the city's one consistent jazz venue. Despite the current lack of mainstream interest in jazz, in Philadelphia or elsewhere, the Chris Potter Quartet performed two sets for a crowd which filled every seat, barstool, and available standing room well before show time.Potter is known for offering a constantly evolving range of ...read more
The appearance of saxophonist Chris Potter as a leader on ECM may come as a surprise to some, but a look back at the label's 44-year history makes The Sirens--his label debut and 19th as a leader since first emerging with trumpeter Red Rodney before he'd turned twenty, and releasing his own debut, Presenting Chris Potter (Criss Cross), in 1992--not just sensible, but inevitable. Potter's history with the label, starting with bassist Dave Holland's longstanding quintet and big band, from 1999's Prime Directive through 2002's What Goes Around, further grew through his collaboration with bassist Steve Swallow and, in 2010, ...read more
Chris Potter is one of the most visible saxophonists on the scene in recent years. There are reasons for that. Not only does he have incredible chops, inner drive, intensity and the impulse to always be creative--as if that's not enough--he can fit into any musical situation and find a way to contribute.Coming through the ranks, including while he was a still a student at the Manhattan School of Music, he could be found playing in any situation. He had an association with pianist Marian McPartland and trumpeter Red Rodney. Potter hung out on the New York scene ...read more
He's not exactly been quiet, performing with drummer Paul Motian's trio on Lost in a Dream (ECM, 2010), and continuing his ongoing relationship with Dave Holland, recently heard on tour with the bassist's flagship quintet at the 2011 Montreal Jazz Festival, but it's been two years since Chris Potter released Ultrahang (ArtistShare, 2009), his last date as a leader. Transatlantic ends Potter's recording hiatus, teaming the influential saxophonist with Denmark's DR Big Band for a brass-heavy set more orchestral in its approach than, say, Holland's groove-heavy big band. That's not to say Potter's years with Holland haven't ...read more
Pianos have rarely been featured in drummer Paul Motian's ensembles, though his years with Bill Evans and Keith Jarrett have surely left an impression on his approach to balladry. Lost in a Dream is a collection of Motian ballads recorded at the Village Vanguard in early 2009, with Motian in the intriguing company of pianist Jason Moran and saxophonist Chris Potter. The empathy here is pronounced. Never restricted by the role of mere time-keeper, Motian's touch and free, impressionistic playing sets the tone for these performances and Moran and Potter are set loose to explore the melodic possibilities of the ...read more
Flitting like drunken fireflies, luminescent tones flutter out of a saxophone, tracing capricious, spasmodic lines. In the background, washes of cymbals and softly-brushed snare sweeps weave discretely fine-spun rhythms around a shy piano that is busy rocking drowsy chords to sleep. Fragmented, almost to the point of abstraction, the music nevertheless expands, ebb and flowing placidly like sea waves licking at a sandy beach, pulse-less yet its life beating strong.If a modernist spin on the old cubist aesthetic appears to be the inspiration behind the cover artwork of Lost In A Dream, then the analogy may also very ...read more
Consider this album a blind date of sorts: Drummer Paul Motian-meets-pianist-Jason Moran, introduced by the matchmaker, saxophonist Chris Potter. Though Motian had worked once with Moran in 2006, this collaboration is a stunning example of the versatility and mastery of Motian's veteran technique. Recorded over a week of concerts at New York City's Village Vanguard, Motian's stomping grounds, this album is held together by the trio's seemingly effortless exploration of slow, melodic ballads. At 79, Motian has proven to be a versatile and thorough player, thriving in any combination of players. With plenty of elbow room within ...read more
Drummer Paul Motian seems to fit very comfortably into any musical situation, and elevate it. With a career that spans more than five decades--and seeming to begin at an early pinnacle with pianist Bill Evans' trio on the legendary Sunday at the Village Vanguard (Riverside Records, 1961)--Motian has, as a sideman, augmented musical visions galore. A listen no further than his contributions to Bobo Stenson's Goodbye (ECM Records, 2005), Anat Fort's A Long Story (ECM Records, 2007), or Marc Copland's New York Trio Recordings Vol. 1: Voices (Pirouet Records, 2007) provides just a small slice of the magic he has ...read more
A drummer whose inventive approach to percussion has produced one of the most recognizable and in demand sounds in the pantheon of jazz, Paul Motian's revolutionary playing has seen him approach the kit not as a rhythmic backbone, but as a tool for subtlety and soundscape creation. Lost In A Dream, Motian's set of midnight ballads, is a perfect evocation of the the New York Cityscape's iconography. His hushed brush work calls to mind the patter of rain--the mist and fog that shrouds the city. Fitting, then, that the drummer's induction of this new trio was recorded at the legendary ...read more
Drummer Paul Motian makes another stellar recording with his newest trio of pianist Jason Moran and saxophonist Chris Potter. Soon to be eighty, the drummer--who doesn't venture out of Manhattan these days--displays full command over musical expression and emotion on this live recording.
It's impossible to listen to Motian's trio work at New York's Village Vanguard without reflecting on his employer in the early 1960s, Bill Evans. Motian sat at the drum chair for those grail-like dates with the pianist and bassist Scott LaFaro. Like the reissued Complete Live At The Village Vanguard 1961 (Riverside, 2005), Lost in ...read more
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