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Scott Colley: Music Architect

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Final Thoughts

AAJ: We talked about bass players earlier. But compositionally, or other players who aren't bass players, who are ones that you've leaned from, enjoyed or were influenced by?

Scott ColleySC: For a long time I haven't really listened to bass players much, especially in terms of solo ideas or melodic ideas. I tend to listen to a lot of horn players, or piano players who don't have same types of physical limitations that there are in the bass, and try and take those and figure out how I can play them on the bass, or at least imply that I'm playing those ideas. The instrumentalists that are able to play broader harmonies. That's something I've thought about for along time is to try to create solos or melodic ideas that don't sound too much like a bassist played them.

On the other hand there are bassists that, from a compositional standpoint, I really enjoy. Dave Holland's work. Ben Allison, I think is an excellent composer. You look at composition as being a bassist, but studying harmony and rhythm and trying to use the background of being a bassist—the strength—but I also try and create compositions that don't sound, hopefully, like they were written by a bassist. The function or freedom or texture I'm trying to create in a particular moment ... again, I want to be something that comes from what I feel needs to come at this moment, rather than it should be this way.

Selected Discography

Scott Colley, Architect of the Silent Moment (Cam Jazz, 2007)

Donny McCaslin, Soar (Sunnyside, 2006)

Alex Sipiagin, Returning (Criss Cross, 2005)

Adam Rogers, Apparitions (Criss Cross, 2005)

Jim Hall, Magic Meeting (ArtistShare, 2004)

David Binney, South (ACT, 2003)

Andrew Hill, Day the World Stood Still (Stunt, 2003)

Scott Colley, Initial Wisdom (Palmetto, 2003)

Chris Potter, Traveling Mercies (Verve, 2002)

Greg Osby, Symbols of Light (A Solution) (Blue Note, 2001)

Scott Colley, The Magic Line (Arabesque, 2000)

Scott Colley, This Place (Steeplechase, 2000)

Scott Colley, Portable Universe (Freelance, 2000)

David Kikoski, The Maze (Criss Cross, 1999)

Andrew Hill, Dusk (Palmetto, 1999)

Scott Colley, Subliminal (Criss Cross, 1998)

Tim Ries, Imaginary Time (Moo, 1997)

Pat Martino, All Sides Now (Blue Note, 1996)

T.S. Monk, The Charm (Blue Note, 1995)

Roy Hargrove, Approaching Standards (Jive/Novus, 1994)

Chris Potter, Concentric Circles (Concord, 1993)

Jon Gordon, Jon Gordon Quartet (Chiaroscuro, 1992)

Fred Hersch, Forward Motion (Chesky, 1991)

Carmen McRae, Any Old Time (Denon, 1986)

Photo Credits

Top Two Photos: Juan-Carlos Hernández

Bottom Photo: Russ Escritt

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