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Jay Anderson

Bassist/composer Jay Anderson is among the most versatile and respected jazz artists performing today. Born in 1955 in Southern California, Anderson be gan playing acoustic bass at the age of 12. Throughout junior high, high school, and college, Anderson won numerous awards for excellence in both jazz and classical music. One week after receiving a Bachelor’s Degree in Performance from California State University at Long Beach, Anderson was asked to join the Woody Herman Orchestra. After touring with the “Herd” for a year, he was called by Carmen McRae and performed with the legendary singer for the next two years.

In 1982 Anderson made the decision to move to New York City. Since moving East, he has continued to perform and record with some of the most important names in jazz. Anderson has been a regular member in the bands of Red Rodney & Ira Sullivan, Michael Brecker, Toots Thielemans, Bob Mintzer, Michael Franks, Eliane Elias, Bennie Wallace, Lew Tabackin, Steve Khan, Lynne Arriale, and was with Joe Sample from 1992 to 2006.

Anderson takes pride in his versatility and openness to different types of music. He has been featured on over 300 recordings, including work with Paul Bley, Randy Brecker, Bob Berg, Vic Juris, Mike Stern, Seamus Blake, Oz Noy, Adam Nussbaum, Donald Byrd, Terumasa Hino, Joe Lovano, Mark Soskin, Lee Konitz, Warren Bernhardt, Dalia Faitelson, Frank Kimbrough, Dave Stryker, Steve Slagle, Garry Dial, Dick Oatts, Andy LaVerne, Frank Wess, Walt Weiskopf, Phil Markowitz, Joe Locke, Joey Calderazzo, Bob Sheppard, Tiger Okoshi, George Cables, Jay Clayton, Rich Perry, David Witham, Charles Blenzig, Jeremy Monteiro, Yosuke Yamashita, Mark Isaacs, and many others. He has performed with the big bands of Kenny Wheeler, Bob Mintzer, Bob Belden, Mel Lewis, Toshiko Akiyoshi, George Gruntz Concert Jazz Band, WDR Köln (Germany), and the critically acclaimed Maria Schneider Orchestra whose 2004 release “Concert In The Garden” won the Grammy Award for Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album. He also performed on Maria's 2007 release "Sky Blue" that won a Grammy for Best Instrumental Composition, "Cerulean Skies".

Anderson has also done numerous jingles and non-jazz recordings with Frank Zappa, Tom Waits, Chaka Khan, Michel Legrand, legendary poet Allen Ginsberg, and the Grammy Award winning 1997 Record of the Year “Falling Into You” by Celine Dion.

In addition to being a highly sought-after sideman, Anderson is a proven voice in his own right. His two original recordings on the DMP label, “NEXT EXIT” and “LOCAL COLOR” have received critical acclaim both in the U.S.

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4
Album Review

Judy Niemack - Jay Clayton: Voices in Flight

Read "Voices in Flight" reviewed by Katchie Cartwright


While veteran vocal improvisers Judy Niemack and Jay Clayton have known each other since the '70s, Voices in Flight marks their first time together in the studio. They have performed some of the album material in live shows since the early 2000s, including their medley of “Body and Soul" and Idrees Sulieman's gorgeous contrafact of it, “Orange Blossoms" ("With You"). Niemack sings the Sulieman tune, highlighting her craft in writing texts for instrumental jazz tunes that match the melodic inflections ...

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Album Review

Tim Lin: Empathy

Read "Empathy" reviewed by Jack Bowers


Saxophonist Tim Lin, still fresh enough on the scene to be described as a “young lion," tips his horn to a number of his mentors on Empathy, his second album as a leader, following 2021's Romance on Formosa. As on that earlier album, Lin, a first generation Taiwanese-American (from Fremont, CA), has chosen a charming blend of standards and jazz staples to complement a lone original composition, “Fourth Right," by the superb pianist Andy LaVerne. And as before, Lin plays ...

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Album Review

Karl Berger: Heart Is A Melody

Read "Heart Is A Melody" reviewed by Dave Linn


Karl Berger, one of the more unsung and underrated jazz musicians of our time, passed away on April 9, 2023. He had just turned 88 years old. Berger released several dozen albums as a leader and scores more as a sideman. His discography reads like a Who's Who of modern jazz. He recorded with people such as Don Cherry, Bill Laswell, Carla Bley, Anthony Braxton, Chick Corea, Pat Metheny, Charles Mingus, Lee Konitz and John McLaughlin, among many more. Berger ...

1
Album Review

Lamb Anderson Sorgen: First Mile

Read "First Mile" reviewed by Mike Jurkovic


You can discredit the human imagination for any number of horrendous things. But when used right, things like First Mile happen. Some odd quirk in the continuum comes along and you find three far-travelled veterans, namely pianist Chuck Lamb (Dry Jack, Brubeck Brothers), drummer Harvey Sorgen (Hot Tuna, Anthony Braxton, Paul Simon, {[Bill Frisell}}) and bassist Jay Anderson (Maria Schneider, Paul Bley, David Bowie, Randy Brecker) in a room in Saugerties, NY making it happen. Making it happen real good. ...

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Album Review

Jeremy Monteiro: Live at No Black Tie

Read "Live at No Black Tie" reviewed by Pierre Giroux


Kuala Lumpur (capital of Malaysia) is not on the tip of everyone's tongue as a jazz audience or recording destination. However that might be under reconsideration with the release of Live At No Black Tie , a live trio session headed by Singapore pianist Jeremy Monteiro, accompanied by two American jazz notables, bassist Jay Anderson and drummer Lewis Nash. In this nine track outing, Monteiro and his cohorts deliver a full bodied take on some jazz standards along with a ...

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Album Review

Jeremy Monteiro, Jay Anderson, Lewis Nash: Live At No Black Tie

Read "Live At No Black Tie" reviewed by Ian Patterson


Forty-five albums in as many years represents remarkable consistency from pianist Jeremy Monteiro—Singapore's King of Swing. It is worth recounting that Monteiro has played with the likes of Charlie Haden, Benny Golson, Toots Thielemans, Cassandra Wilson, both Michael Brecker and Randy Brecker, James Moody, Eldee Young and, for over thirty years, with Ernie Watts. Oh yes, Monteiro can swing alright, as this live recording in the stellar company of Jay Anderson and Lewis Nash amply demonstrates. Recorded in ...

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Album Review

Maria Schneider Orchestra: Data Lords

Read "Data Lords" reviewed by Angelo Leonardi


C'è molto da dire sul nuovo album di Maria Schneider ma la prima e più importante considerazione riguarda la musica: sorprendente per ricchezza e novità di soluzioni, tensione narrativa e sintesi tra ricerca e tradizione. È uno dei suoi dischi più avvincenti e innovativi. L'incubazione del progetto è durata alcuni anni (il precedente The Thompson Fields è del 2015) e si lega alla presa di coscienza della bandleader sui pericoli connessi alla raccolta dei dati personali dalle società dell'universo digitale. ...

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"Anderson's lyrical bass solos stood out throughout the concert in their passion and melodic sense"

Chris Lim - Business Times (Signapore)

“Jay Anderson is a flawless section bassist and a fleet full toned soloist....an uncommonly mobile bassist.”

Leonard Feather-LA Times

“Anderson’s bass frolics, romps, bounces and strides with impeccable precision....”

John Scarborough - Houston Chronicle

"Anderson and Davis, superb musicians who suggested the capacity to dazzle with virtuosity had they so chosen,each took a more selfless approach. The bassist turned in excellent solos, with just enough technique to spice his warm, melodic conception and never played two notes when one would suffice.”

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Primary Instrument

Bass

Willing to teach

Advanced only

Credentials/Background

Professor of Jazz Bass Studies at Manhattan School Of Music

Photos

Music

Recordings: As Leader | As Sideperson

Empathy

Self Produced
2023

buy

Voices in Flight

GAM Records
2023

buy

Holidays

Sunnyside Records
2023

buy

Fresh Start

Sunnyside Records
2022

buy

Heart Is A Melody

Self Produced
2022

buy

Live at No Black Tie

Jazznote Records
2021

buy

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