Ray Russell is a session ace from London. He's just released his first album on the Abstract Logix label, known for high energy fusion with attitude. If you are the kind of music lover who studies album credits, you might know Ray from his work with Tina Turner, Freddie Mercury, David Bowie, Phil Collins, Gary Moore, Paul McCartney, and Robert Plant. Jazz fans might know him from the group RMS and his work with the Gil Evans. If you’re a James Bond fan, he played on several soundtracks, from Live & Let Die to Thunderball and many others.
Singer/Songwriter/Guitarist Devon Allman is fresh off a tour of Australia with his Grammy nominated band, Royal Southern Brotherhood, and he’s also just released his first album under his own name. During the interview you’ll hear samples from the album which combines rock energy with mature themes, and demonstrates a gift for melody and way with words. As the son of Gregg Allman and the nephew of Duane Allman, comparisons are inevitable, but with this album Devon proves he is a musical force be with reckoned with on his own terms I caught Devon as he was literally on the road, and the interview might give you the feeling that you’re along for the ride.
Scott Sharrard is New York based guitarist, singer & songwriter. For the past several years has been the guitarist for the Gregg Allman Band. Glide Magazine called him Gregg Allman’s secret weapon, but the secret's been out for a while. Levon Helm was an early and enthusiastic mentor, and even Dr. John extended a helpful hand along the way.
Etienne Mbappe is a Paris based bass player, originally from Cameroon. He began his musical career in Paris in the 80s, playing with the leading names on the African music scene. He was part of Ultramarine, a groundbreaking world music fusion band, and was eventually recruited by the jazz legend Joe Zawinul to join his band, and later by another music icon, John McLaughlin, with whom he still tours and records. This year he joined Jimmy Herring, Wayne Krantz, Keith Carlock, and Michael Landau in a new super group — The Ringers.
Alex Machacek is an Austrian born jazz fusion guitarist who has been based in Los Angeles for nearly a decade. This hour long interview touches upon his training, development, influences and approach, with samples from his latest recording, FAT (short for Fabulous Austrian Trio.)
John Kelman is an accomplished music writer, and also the Managing Editor of All About Jazz. When he was 11 years old and taking guitar lessons in Ottawa, John’s instructor encouraged him to go to a local coffeehouse to see the guitarist Lenny Breau perform. Several more times over the years John saw him live, and on one occassion his guitar instructor, who knew Lenny, actually introduced him to Lenny Breau before a show.
On this episode we speak with the three guitarists from The Ringers: Jimmy Herring, Wayne Krantz, and Michael Landau, plus their fantastic drummer, Keith Carlock. The band brings together five extraordinary musicians, world class players who have collectively recorded and toured with many of the best known and most respected artists in jazz and rock.
Ronny Jordan is a winner of Gibson Guitar’s award for Best Jazz Guitarist, he’s been nominated for a Grammy award, and is a jazz artist who has made it to the pop charts. He’s known as one of the earliest and most successful jazz artists to draw upon the energy and vitality of hip hop.
Jim Hart is one of the hottest young musicians on the U.K. jazz scene. He was awarded the John Dankworth “Most Promising Musician” award in the BBC Big Band of the Year competition for his drumming, and his skill as a vibraphonist earned him the British Jazz Award for “Rising Star” in 2006, and for miscellaneous instrument (vibes) in 2007.
Derek Trucks has been on the cover of Down Beat and Rolling Stone. This is the audio of the second half of my feature interview for All About Jazz. From his earliest guest appearance on stage with the Allman Brothers Band to his duets with Eric Clapton and lots more.
Just after sitting in with the Allman Brothers Band at the Beacon, the iconic jazz guitarist spoke with me about his musical roots in rock and blues. He gave me his take on Duane Allman, Mike Bloomfield, Sly and the Family Stone, Derek Trucks, Warren Haynes, John Mayer, Jimmy Herring and plenty more.
Vocalist Maria Neckam's latest CD is Unison (Sunnyside Records, 2012). In this interview, Neckam talks about finding her own musical path early in life; writing songs that don't use traditional forms; her journey from Vienna to Amsterdam to Brooklyn; and the effects of Buddhism on her life and music.
Saxophonist Steve Lehman's new album is called Dialect Fluorescent (Pi Recordings, 2012). In this interview, Lehman talks about allocentric performance; what he learned from Jackie McLean about sound and evolution; the unlikely beginning of his current trio; and some of the touchstones in his own musical growth.
Pianist George Colligan's most recent album is Living For The City (Steeplechase, 2011). In this interview, conducted before an April show at Jazz Standard in NYC, Colligan talks about selling out vs. being relevant; trying his hand at writing songs with lyrics; Nicholas Payton's outspoken blogging; dealing with online controversy; and managing a life of teaching, performing and fatherhood.