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Musician

Alexander Hawkins

Born:

Alexander Hawkins is a composer, pianist, organist, and bandleader who is ‘unlike anything else in modern creative music’ (Ni Kantu) and whose recent work has reached a ‘dazzling new apex’ (Downbeat). A largely self-taught improviser, he works in a vast array of creative contexts. His own highly distinctive soundworld is forged through the search to reconcile both his love of free improvisation and profound fascination with composition and structure. His writing has been said to represent ‘a fundamental reassertion of composition within improvised music’ (Point of Departure), and his voice one of the ‘most vividly distinctive...in modern jazz’ (The Jazzmann). As a pianist, he has been described as ‘remarkable...possessing staggering technical ability and a fecund imagination as both player and composer.’ Concerning his organ playing, critic Brian Morton recently commented that ‘[t]he most interesting Hammond player of the last decade and more, [Hawkins] has already extended what can be done on the instrument.’ He is a frequent solo performer, and also appears in groupings ranging from duo (with the likes of Evan Parker, John Surman, Han Bennink and Sofia Jernberg), via his co-led quartet with the vocalist Elaine Mitchener ('probably a new standard for improvised music with song', Jazzism), through to large ensembles ('Unit[e]...is a free-jazz masterpiece', Free Jazz). An in-demand sideman, Hawkins continues to be heard live and on record with vast array of contemporary leaders of all generations, including the likes of Evan Parker, John Surman, Joe McPhee, Mulatu Astatke, Wadada Leo Smith, Anthony Braxton, Marshall Allen, Han Bennink, Hamid Drake, Rob Mazurek, Taylor Ho Bynum, Harris Eisenstadt, Matana Roberts, and Shabaka Hutchings, amongst many others

Album

Break A Vase

Label: Intakt Records
Released: 2022
Track listing: The Perfect Sound Would Like to Be Unique; Stamped Down, or Shovelled; Sun Rugged Billions; Generous Souls; Faint Making Stones; Break a Vase; Chaplin in Slow Motion; Domingada Open Air; Stride Rhyme Gospel; Even the Birds Stop to Listen.

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Article: Radio & Podcasts

Stephanie McKay, Timo Lassy, Alexander Hawkins, Kit Downes & Other New Releases

Read "Stephanie McKay, Timo Lassy, Alexander Hawkins, Kit Downes & Other New Releases" reviewed by Ludovico Granvassu


Welcome back to our weekly tasting menu of the best new jazz delicacies the international scene has to offer. This week we highlight two releases that draw attention to historic developments with stellar rosters of contributing artists, Music for Ukraine and Black Lives—from Generation to Generation, and on the brand new album by the Michael Leonhart ...

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Article: Radio & Podcasts

The Gathering—Roots & Branches of Los Angeles Jazz, Survival Unit II & Hot Heroes

Read "The Gathering—Roots & Branches of Los Angeles Jazz, Survival Unit II & Hot Heroes" reviewed by Maurice Hogue


With only one opportunity left to program some music to recognize Black History Month, I decided to dedicate the last hour music by some of the great Black musicians making their own history (Andrew Cyrille, William Parker, Wadada Leo Smith and Graham Haynes & Oliver Lake of OGJB) and The Gathering: Roots And Branches of Los ...

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Article: Radio & Podcasts

Rudresh Mahanthappa, Emile Parisien & Felix Henkelhausen

Read "Rudresh Mahanthappa, Emile Parisien & Felix Henkelhausen" reviewed by Maurice Hogue


Several debut recordings on this episode for you and music from Rudresh Mahanthappa & his Hero Trio, drummer Maximilian Hering from Germany, bassist Felix Henkelhausen also from Germany, the trio In Real Time (Carol Liebowitz, Adam Lane & Andrew Drury), Argentinean bass clarinetist Emma Famin, French saxophonist Emile Parisien & the striking duo of saxophonist Dave ...

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Article: Festivals Talking

Moers Festival Interviews: Tomeka Reid

Read "Moers Festival Interviews: Tomeka Reid" reviewed by Martin Longley


The Moers Festival has been operating its Improviser In Residence initiative since 2008, inviting artists every year to dwell in a designated house on Klein Allee, very close to this German city's expansive Schlosspark. The 'Residence' part of the title is quite extreme, as each successive musician is given the keys for a full year's inhabitation, ...

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Article: Radio & Podcasts

Two From TUM

Read "Two From TUM" reviewed by Maurice Hogue


A true smorgasbord of creative music in this edition of One Man's Jazz. It's all good--American masters Andrew Cyrille and William Parker joined by Enrico Rava, the OGJB Quartet, Joe McPhee, New Orleans poet Don Paul, Tony Malaby & Reggie Workman--European flavours from pianists Joona Toivanen from Finland and Alexander Hawkins from England, Nexus and Rope ...

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Article: Album Review

Angelika Niescier & Alexander Hawkins: Soul In Plain Sight

Read "Soul In Plain Sight" reviewed by John Sharpe


Some of pianist British Alexander Hawkins' most potent outings have been in the intimate duo setting. Think, for example, of Leaps In Leicester (Clean Feed, 2016) with Evan Parker or Shards And Constellations (Intakt, 2020) with cellist Tomeka Reid. To that list can be added this richly-detailed double act with the Polish-born, German-resident saxophonist Angelika Niescier. ...

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Article: Album Review

Alexander Hawkins / Mirror Canon: Break A Vase

Read "Break A Vase" reviewed by Mark Corroto


Pianist and composer Alexander Hawkins sequences the ten tracks of Break A Vase in a seemingly counterintuitive manner. The title track, which is taken from West Indian poet Derek Walcott's Nobel Prize acceptance speech, is not heard until track six; it is a solo piano performance which emulates Walcott's words, “Break a vase, and the love ...

Album

Soul In Plain Sight

Label: Intakt Records
Released: 2021
Track listing: Brawls And Squabbles; Arhythm Songy; Why Didn’t You; Un:tamed; Shipwrecked Words; Scops; Weft; Nexus; Metamorphose Einerka Karelle; Loom; As Hemispheres At Home; Limnetic Zone; Tar’ai; Scope.


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