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Mike Reed


Mike Reed (b. Bielefeld, Germany May 26, 1974) is a musician, composer, bandleader and arts presenter based in Chicago. Over the last two decades he has emerged as a dominant force within Chicago’s diverse artistic community, both through the music he makes and the live events he produces. In addition to leading or co-leading several working bands, all rooted deeply in jazz and improvised music, he’s founding director of the Pitchfork Music Festival, the current programming chair of the Chicago Jazz Festival, and the owner and director of the acclaimed performing arts venue Constellation. He is a devoted cultural advocate committed to providing platforms for artistic expression unhindered by commercial pressures. In 2016 he also became the owner of the Hungry Brain, a cozy neighborhood tavern that’s been a fulcrum for live creative music and socially-driven public programs.


Article: Play This!

Mike Reed / The Separatist Party: A Low Frequency Nightmare

Read "Mike Reed / The Separatist Party: A Low Frequency Nightmare" reviewed by John Chacona

In 2021, the jny: Chicago instrumental drone trio Bitchin Bajas dropped Switched on Ra (Drag City), a collection of Sun Ra covers for synthesizers. Drummer, bandleader and scenemaker Mike Reed probably heard the cassette-only release and he almost certainly heard the band's October 2021 performance of that material at his Hungry Brain venue. They must have ...


Article: Radio & Podcasts

Kate Gentile, Swell / Tokar / Kugel & Richard Davis

Read "Kate Gentile, Swell / Tokar / Kugel & Richard Davis" reviewed by Maurice Hogue

Drummer Kate Gentile's new Find Letter X is extremely inventive and original--one of the best of the year and featured in this edition. The new em>For The People Of The Open Heart by trombonist Steve Swell, bassist Mark Tokar & drummer Klaus Kugel is another exceptional release. Also new and notable are pianist Satoko Fujii with ...


Article: Radio & Podcasts

Hiromi, Mike Reed, Weave4, Astghik Martirosyan, Todd Clouser & More

Read "Hiromi, Mike Reed, Weave4, Astghik Martirosyan, Todd Clouser & More" reviewed by Ludovico Granvassu

Putting together an episode of Mondo Jazz feels like an experiment, requiring research and analysis leading to a synthesis of the most interesting specimens from the current world jazz flora. Here some of the most significant discoveries of the last week.Happy listening!Playlist Ben Allison “Mondo Jazz Theme (feat. Ted Nash & Pyeng ...


Article: Live Review

Jazzfest Berlin 2023

Read "Jazzfest Berlin 2023" reviewed by Giuseppe Segala

Haus der Berliner Festspiele Quasimodo Jazz Club, A-Train Jazz Club, Berlino 2-5.11.2023 C'era più di un buon motivo per stimolare quest'anno la decisione di raggiungere il Jazzfest Berlin: primo tra tutti, la presenza di un grande protagonista come Henry Threadgill, che giunto sulla soglia degli ottant'anni, con alle spalle una ...


Article: Book Review

Sound Experiments: The Music of the AACM by Paul Steinbeck

Read "Sound Experiments: The Music of the AACM by Paul Steinbeck" reviewed by Tom Spargo

Sound Experiments: The Music of the AACM Paul Steinbeck 272 Pages ISBN-13: 978-0-226-82953-1University of Chicago PressHardback 2022/ Paperback 2023 Paul Steinbeck's Sound Experiments is a historical narrative and technical analysis of the music of the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (AACM). Steinbeck traces the chronology of this wildly creative organization from ...


Article: Album Review

Chicago Edge Ensemble: The Individualists

Read "The Individualists" reviewed by Mark Corroto

Let's trot out the old New York versus Chicago rivalry. Just like with their sports teams (Jets vs. Bears, Knicks vs. Bulls, etc.) music fans feel a need to chose sides. It has been like that since Louis Armstrong left the Windy City for the Big Apple in 1924 and Sun Ra in 1961. Sure NYC ...

Article: Radio & Podcasts

Daniel Carter, Chicago Edge Ensemble, & Charlotte Keeffe

Read "Daniel Carter, Chicago Edge Ensemble, & Charlotte Keeffe" reviewed by Maurice Hogue

Music on the edge prevails in this episode, highlighted by the ubiquitous multi-instrumentalist Daniel Carter, Chicago guitarist Dan Phillips and his Chicago Edge Ensemble, and a Polish/Spanish quintet that features guitarist Grzegorz Lesiak, trumpeter Piotr Damasiewicz and the members of the Liba Villavecchia Trio. James Baldwin's works are the subject of a baldwin en transit, French ...


Article: Radio & Podcasts

Vijay Anderson, Mike Reed, Francisco Mela & Irreversible Entanglements

Read "Vijay Anderson, Mike Reed, Francisco Mela & Irreversible Entanglements" reviewed by Maurice Hogue

Some drummers in the spotlight in this episode: LA/New York's Vijay Anderson and his Silver Screen Quintet tackle an city problem on the new Urban Jungle Los Angeles , while Chicago's Mike Reed explores loneliness and isolation on his new The Separatist Party. Francisco Mela teams up with one of his students at Berklee, saxophonist Jonathan ...


Article: Radio & Podcasts

Dan Rosenboom, Randy Weston, Paul Butterfield and More

Read "Dan Rosenboom, Randy Weston, Paul Butterfield and More" reviewed by Jerome Wilson

This show features lively and subdued modern jazz from a wide variety of musicians including Dan Rosenboom, Randy Weston, Cathy Segal-Garcia, and Paul Butterfield. Playlist Henry Threadgill Sextett “I Can't Wait Till I Get Home" from The Complete Novus & Columbia Recordings of Henry Threadgill & Air (Mosaic) 00:00 Ben Rosenblum Nebula Project “Catamaran" ...


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