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by Len Davis
Drummer and percussionist Tino di Geraldo, Aurora Clara and Spandrel. Marc Johnson, Pat Metheny, and bass players Tom Kennedy and Teymur Phell. Playlist Aurora Clara Seis Cafe" from Clear Dawn (Youkali) 00:00 Spandrel Words Travel Fast and so does Fire" from Spandrel (Self Produced) 08:31 Marc Johnson's Bass Desires"Thrill Seekers" from Second Sight (ECM) 17:01 Pat Metheny"Rise Up" from The Unity Sessions (Nonesuch)25:25 Tom Kennedy"Just For The Record" from Just For The Record (Self Produced) 33:64 MSM Schmidt"Hymn ...read more
by Karl Ackermann
The virtuoso bassist Marc Johnson has kept a relatively low profile as a leader. A graduate of the prestigious North Texas State University jazz program, Johnson made his mark as a member of Bill Evans' trio from 1978 until the pianist's final album the following year. His ECM debut came as a member of John Abercrombie's trio on Current Events (1986) with Peter Erskine. The same trio, plus Bill Frisell, under Johnson's name, released Bass Desires the same year on ...read more
by Dan McClenaghan
Swept Away is certainly a collaborative effort--co-led by Eliane Elias and bassist Marc Johnson--but it seems more like the pianist's set. The Sao Paolo-born pianist, Elias, penned five of the disc's eleven tunes, and co-wrote two more with her musical/life partner, Johnson. The duo, in league with drummer Joey Baron and, on five tunes, saxophonist Joe Lovano, has produced the most sumptuous music imaginable, beginning with the Elias-penned title tune--a floating trio effort, a sensual haiku to unadorned beauty.read more
by John Kelman
It's a relatively rare occasion when Marc Johnson releases an album under his own name, but based on the bassist's track record--from Bass Desires (ECM, 1985) through to Shades of Jade (ECM, 2005)--it's always one to celebrate. As Johnson fast approaches 60, it seems like only yesterday that he emerged as the bassist in Bill Evans' final trio in the late 1970s, before the piano legend's passing in 1980. But if time has passed, one thing that has remained constant ...read more
by R.J. DeLuke
Marc Johnson is an extraordinary musician, but recordings under his own name are infrequent. That can often be the case for people whose instrument is the contrabass. But for this musician, it seems more about making statements when the time is right.
Johnson plays exquisite bass, with the luscious tone and great harmonic and melodic expression that came to the ear of most people in jazz during his two-year tenure with the legendary Bill Evans nearly 30 years ago. Even ...read more
by C. Andrew Hovan
Somewhat of a recluse, bassist Marc Johnson only comes out of hiding every five years or so. But when he does, it's usually to give us another nugget of inestimable value, his albums always proving to be an adventure with a healthy mix of tradition and forward-thinking originality. A veteran of one of pianist Bill Evans' last trios from the '80s, Johnson is a virtuoso artist with far-ranging tastes that have taken his own musical pursuits to many different lands. ...read more
by Michael McCaw
Marc Johnson long ago cemented his abilities as a bassist since his involvement in Bill Evans' final trio. His career as a leader in his own right, though, has been a lttle more questionable. Released periodically over the span of a quarter century, his albums have run the gamut in quality from his excellent early ECM dates featuring Bill Frisell and John Scofield to the somewhat lackluster feel of Sound of Summer Running (Verve, 1998). Nonetheless, all this changes with ...read more