Swedish bassist, compser, bandleader and educator Anders Jormin may be best known to North American audiences as a member of Charles Lloyd's and Tomasz Stanko's mid-'90s ECM label quartets along with pianist Bobo Stenson. He's also been a longstanding participant in Stenson's own trio, with three sublime recordings released on ECM since '96 including the subtle yet substantive double-disk set, Serenity
. But the truth of the matter is that Jormin has been forging his own career since the mid-'80s, first with a series of recordings for the always-quality but not always easy-to-obtain Swedish Dragon label, and more recently with two ECM recordings including the just-released song cycle In winds, in light
, that brings a new meaning to the term "sacred music." Jormin's projects may be stylistically difficult to pigeonhole, but throughout his career a constant has been his commitment to finding new ways to make the music and his instrument sing. And it is just that diverse aesthetic that makes every new release from Jormin both a surprise and a confirmation.
"I do come from a musical family in the sense that my father was a professional jazz musician before I was born," says Jormin, "although by the time I was born he had quit the professional musician life to get a more ordinary job in order to support the family. So I learned the basic rules of standard jazz language in early childhood, and so did my brother Christian, who is five years younger than me. We played a lot of jazz music at home when I was young, so I had a good foundation. Then I did more traditional training at music school, classical music first on piano and later on the double-bass; I finally ended up studying at the conservatory and then moving to Gotenberg, where I studied music at the university level for a number of years."