There are few individuals who have had as large a role in shaping the history of Jazz in the latter part of the 20th century as Jack DeJohnette. He was a member of the AACM in Chicago and played with Charles Lloyd, Bill Evans and Miles Davis in the 1960s. He has had a musical conversation with Keith Jarrett that has lasted for over 40 years.
In 2016 he will be releasing a new vinyl only solo piano album. A new trio album with Ravi Coltrane on sax and Matt Garrison on bass will also be out next year.
Most of the interviews I do are over Skype and some over the telephone. I’ve interviewed Phil Haynes twice before and I always end it with “If you ever get up this way you’re welcome to be on my radio show”. This summer he finally made it up to Rhody and took me up on it. Multiple interviews with an artist are great. They are relaxed and make it easier to get into the meat of a conversation.
I’ve deliberately tried not to over edit this to keep the ambience of the radio show. Phil tells great stories and we laugh. We talk about solo drumming and recording in a large resonant room. He tells the story of the Corner Store a practice and rehersal space “and so much more” in Brooklyn that morphed into his label Corner Store Jazz.
On the air we played rough mixes of the upcoming Free Country. There are some edits included in the podcast and Phil waxes poetic about their meaning and resonance.
One of the great pleasures of preparing for my interview with jazz drum virtuoso Brian Blade was going back and rediscovering some of the great music that he has played on with other artists over the years. (Check out St. Thomas from Joshua Redman’s Spirit of the Moment album)
Last month he played in Europe with Wayne Shorter and before that he was in Japan with John Patitucci. He also has a recent album with Ron Miles and Bill Frisell, Circuit Rider. Weather he is playing with A list jazz artists or with his own group the Brian Blade Fellowship his credo is “Serve the Music”. The group has developed it’s own distinctive sound that is evocative of the American landscape.
The Fellowship Group will be recording live on August 21st at the cooperatively run Columbus Theatrein Providence. The performance will be followed by a Talkback the following day led by WGBH host Eric Jackson.
This interview was recorded on August 10th and originally broadcast on WRIU in Kingston RI on August 11th.
Gerry Gibbs has been a professional musician since his teens and has been playing the drums since the age of four. He has played with a who’s who of the musicians that have shaped the language of jazz today. His current project with two albums out is The Thrasher Dream Trio featuring Ron Carter on Bass and pianist Kenny Barron. This spring and summer there will be a series of performance dates including the live recording of a new album.
It’s only been a little over a month since the first time that I interviewed Phil Haynes. We talked almost an hour both times and didn’t cover any of the same material. Last month we talked about his new No Fast Food double live In Concert album with Dave Liebman and Drew Gress. This time we talked about another new release this time by another of his projects Free Country.
Free Country is a quartet with guitar, bass, cello and drums that takes americana to new realms with intricate arrangements and sophisticated improvisation. The new album Something Beatles is installment 2.5 of what Phil envisions as a trilogy. The first album Free Country is all music from before 1900. The second How the West Was Won was about America coming of age. The third album will be recorded during the upcoming tour and will be titled 60-69.
We talked about Phil’s take on americana, how the project took shape, “why” the Beatles, Corner Store Jazz and recording the groups second album in New York shortly after 9/11.
Although he is the drummer and leader of his own band Redivider, when I talked to Matthew Jacobson he had just finished the first night of a european tour. Like most jazz musicians he has a number of projects going on. His current tour with Aerie will dovetail seamlessly into a series of dates with Blowout Fracture and recording sessions with both groups.
Having recently returned to Ireland from an extended stay in New York on a Fulbright Scholarship he is in a unique position to talk about jazz and improvised music on both sides of the atlantic.
We talked about the state of Jazz in New York, Dublin, the UK and Europe, Redivider, the ongoing Match&Fuse DIY project and how his love of anagrams and wordplay relates to improvisation and composition.
My Guest is the renowned jazz drummer Phil Haynes. He has recorded over 65 albums under his own name and with others, most notably with the group Joint Venture and with Trumpeter Paul Smoker. His most recent album is No Fast Food, In Concert featuring Dave Liebman on Sax and Bassist Drew Gress.
We talked about the new live double disc, another of his groups Free Country and their upcoming live album, Composing, Paul Smoker and his time living in New York.