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Peter Leitch

Peter Leitch has over the years, gained an international reputation for his unique personal style, rooted in tradition but recognizably his own. Of his fifteen recordings as a leader, many feature his long-time rhythm section of pianist John Hicks, Ray Drummond and Smitty Smith. Several also include a saxophonist (Pepper Adams, Bobby Watson, Gary Bartz and Jed Levy have each contributed to Peter's recordings).

Self-Portrait is Peter's most recent release (April 2007) and is his first complete solo effort. It features music ranging from Mingus, Ellington and Strayhorn to several new originals performed on electric and acoustic guitar.

Peter is also an accomplished photographer. It is fitting that the release of his new CD is in conjunction with the opening of his photography show "Mississippi and the South," at the WBGO Gallery in Newark.

Autobiography pays tribute to some of the guitarists, heroes, influences and friends (including a tune written for everyone's favorite jazz waitress, "Allyson.") Fans who buy the CD from the website or from Peter directly will also receive a fun 9-minute DVD about the making of Autobiography .

Duality is an intimate musical conversation between the guitarist and pianist John Hicks.

The Montreal Concert is a duet of another sort. Recorded live (a first!), he and altoist Gary Bartz take some musical chances to create what Jazziz calls, "one of the new decade's sterling examples of chamber jazz."

Blues On The Corner is a sextet recording that Peter feels is a winning combination of new voices and old friends and they're unique! Bobby Watson, Kendra Shank, Renee Rosnes, Dwayne Burno and Billy Hart join Peter in making this something special in this mix of originals and music from within the jazz repertoire.

Up Front on Reservoir Records, is a trio effort featuring the guitarist in a more "up front" setting than his previous recording. Featuring bassist Sean Smith and drummer Marvin "Smitty" Smith, Peter, according to Jim Ferguson at Jazz Times, renders this nine-tune set with "a combination of his trademark virtuosity, imagination, musicianship and good taste." And, according to Downbeat, "his long, smoothly flowing lines sound emotional and hauntingly beautiful."

Colours And Dimensions finds the guitarist leading a full-size ensemble featuring piano, bass, drums and three horns. "I wanted to get a group sound in which the guitar was part of the ensemble, rather than make a guitar record per se," Leitch said. The result is a fine summation of his other releases with superb displays of his playing on both electric and acoustic guitars, his composing, and his arranging.

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Album Review

The Peter Leitch New Jazz Orchestra: New Life

Read "New Life" reviewed by Jack Bowers

After what Canadian-born guitarist Peter Leitch has been through in the last eight years, it's little wonder he named the ensemble he now leads the New Life Jazz Orchestra. Diagnosed in 2012 with stage 4 lung cancer, Leitch faced the choice of throwing in the proverbial towel or undergoing career-ending cancer treatment. He chose the latter, reluctantly setting aside his instrument of choice and continuing his musical career as a composer, arranger and conductor of an orchestra whose library consists ...

Album Review

Peter Leitch: Autobiography

Read "Autobiography" reviewed by Ken Franckling

Guitarist Peter Leitch, a fixture on the New York jazz scene since emigrating from his native Canada in 1983, plays with a graceful bop style informed with swing and, at times, fiery passion. He draws like-minded players to his bands and many studio projects, as evidenced on his newest recording on Reservoir Music. Autobiography is a collaboration with tenor sax and flautist Jed Levy, pianist George Cables, bassist Dwayne Burno and drummer Steve Johns. “For D.T." gets things ...

Album Review

Peter Leitch: Blues on the Corner

Read "Blues on the Corner" reviewed by C. Andrew Hovan

Guitarist Peter Leitch has been so long in that category of “talent deserving wider recognition" that it's almost a given that “household name" status will probably continue to allude him. And it probably doesn't abet the matter that his work on the small Reservoir label, not to mention his Criss Cross sides, can be elusive to the casual jazz shopper. But despite all this, make no mistake; Leitch is a pro and one of the better guitarists of his generation. ...

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Performance / Tour

Peter Leitch to Show Photos, Give Concert at Webster University

Peter Leitch to Show Photos, Give Concert at Webster University

Source: St. Louis Jazz Notes by Dean Minderman

Peter Leitch is best known to jazz fans as a New York-based guitarist and composer, but it's his skills as a photographer that will be on display next month in St. Louis when his new photography show “New York to New Orleans, 2000 - 2007" opens with a reception from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Friday, February 27 at the May Gallery in Webster University's Sverdrup Building, 8300 Big Bend Blvd.Leitch, who has worked with musical luminaries including ...

"His music swings with intensity, logic and inventiveness." --Ken Franckling, JazzTimes

"Leitch has been making finely crafted albums with an ever increasing cast for over a decade. This is his best yet (Colours & Dimensions)...septet originals, all richly orchestrated and each utterly memorable." --George Kanzler, Newark Star Ledger

"Leitch's signature remains his warm-toned, saxophonic single note lines which he spins with fluidity, harmonic sophistication and driving swing." --Bill Milkowski, JazzTimes

"His warm, singing lines...have both a melodic grace and a rhythmic strength." --John S. Wilson, New York Times

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Recordings: As Leader | As Sideperson

New Life

Jazz House



Jazz House



Reservoir Music


Blues on the Corner

Reservoir Music



Free Elephant


Sometime In Another...

Free Elephant



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