Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Qobuz Commissions Christian McBride for "The Q Sessions" | AVAILABLE NOW

Qobuz Commissions Seven-time GRAMMY® Award-winning
Jazz Artist Christian McBride for “The Q Sessions”
Hi-Res Exclusive
(International Jazz Day)
End-to-end creation proves the power of
Hi-Res to put listeners “in the studio”

Click Here to Listen to "Brouhaha" at
WBGO at 24-bit / 192kHz quality
Seven-time GRAMMY® Award-winning jazz artist Christian McBride and Qobuz, the Hi-Res streaming and download service, have teamed up to release The Q Sessions EP tomorrow, April 30, just in time for International Jazz Day.
McBride visited NYC’s Power Station earlier this year to record three start-to-finish Hi-Res songs commissioned by Qobuz. The project was created with top-notch equipment at 24-bit/ 192kHz quality, and the final product streams and downloads with the exact same sound, tones and touches in which it was first recorded.
With no digital compression or downgrading involved, The Q Sessions is the first in a new series of Qobuz exclusives designed to transport listeners directly to the studio and show the difference Hi-Res recording, production, and listening can make.
The EP features three McBride performances, played in a quartet with saxophonist Marcus Strickland, drummer Eric Harland, and guitarist Mike Stern. Comprised of one blues improv, one standard and one new original commissioned by Qobuz ("Brouhaha," a song inspired by the then-recent passing of Chick Corea), The Q Sessions was custom-designed for the jazz fans who turn to Qobuz for the best quality sound. This EP joins Qobuz’ already established catalog of exclusive content – expert penned “panorama” interactive essays, artist-created playlists, liner notes and lyric booklets – to add to the platform’s reputation for the best listening experience in the field.
Read more about The Q Sessions and the McBride/Qobuz partnership HERE at WBGO, where you can take an exclusive Hi-Res listen to the new "funk-fusion workout" “Brouhaha” right now, "in the same 24-bit / 192kHz quality with which it was captured in the studio."
“What a pleasure it was to put together a special group featuring one of my favorite guitarists of all time, Mike Stern. It was a great day in the studio with Mike, Marcus and Eric – not only jamming a couple of tunes, but to also record a new original of mine, 'Brouhaha,'" said McBride. "I’m thrilled we captured these performances in Hi-Res audio and can deliver them to the listener without compromise, and I look forward to more with Qobuz.”

Dan Mackta, US Managing Director of Qobuz, said, “Seeing the guys create this incredible music right before my eyes in the historic Power Station Studio A was a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Knowing that everyone can have that same studio quality experience by listening on Qobuz makes it even better."

WRD | "The Hit" | Available via Color Red

Three Seasoned Bandleaders Join Forces to
Co-Produce Eleven Tracks Invoking
'70s Fusion, Funk, and Soul Jazz

Organist Robert Walter,
Guitarist Eddie Roberts, and
Drummer Adam Deitch
Unite as WRD to Present The Hit

Available on
CD + LP via Color Red
WRD, the dynamic, gritty organ trio borne from the brain of The New Mastersounds’ guitarist/bandleader and Color Red record label founder, Eddie Roberts is set to release its debut LP The Hit on April 30th. The group, which features nimble guitarist Roberts, staccato drummer Adam Deitch and elegiac organist Robert Walter, brims with talent and prior successes between them. The Hit boasts the bullish energy of three seasoned bandleaders in one standout sonic boom and is also the brainchild of many long nights at New Orleans Jazz Festival contemplating new creative possibilities.

On these occasions, the trio would plot and plan to one day get together and play, to make music that would shake the world as well as continue a lineage of music. While the band’s members are all front-people in their own projects, they are also able to sublimate their more natural dispositions toward spearheading projects in order to gel and comport themselves as three voices on an equal playing field. Walter, who plays keys prominently in The Greyboy Allstars, brings a flair for both nostalgia and levity in his music. Deitch, who drums in the funky band, Lettuce, snaps and kicks on the kit. All while Roberts, who shreds in the band, The New Mastersounds, offers his gravely, sprinting solos to the mix.  

“Our birthdays are all within a week of each other,” says Roberts “So, it’s a bit of a joke that we’re three Tauruses. We’re all band leaders, we’ve all got similar characters. We knew there’d be no getting ‘dragged along.’ We’re three people pushing, which is really integral for an organ trio. There’s no room for passengers.”

WRD first got together in earnest after a small handful of one-off performances such as Bear Creek Music Festival. Their first session was in 2018 at Color Red Studios in Denver, CO. In that time, the music exploded out of them like a volcanic eruption. The songs were hot and in that lone day, the members were able to lay down four excellent tracks. About a year later, the trio got together again at Color Red in 2019 and laid down another seven songs in a single session. Produced by Roberts, in total, the organ trio’s debut LP came from essentially just two days of work. That’s the insignia of excellent chemistry. Many of the songs came in one “quick and dirty” take. Hence the title: The Hit.
“I loved recording so quickly and simply. We played all in the same room without headphones and kept first takes of most songs. Sometimes when recording there is such a strive for perfection that all of the energy and life from the music disappears, we tried not to let that happen here. Working so quickly captures the immediacy and honest interactions of the players,” remarks Walter on the process.

The Hit is a lean and mean album that really lets Roberts, Deitch and Walter run wild in the freeing format of the trio. Songs like “Corner Pocket” and “Bobby’s Boogaloo” are nice backdoor funk cuts that get to the groove quick and easy, simple yet refreshing executions of traditional sounds and principles. A song like “Judy” underscores the strengths of each player, from the potency of Eddie’s exquisitely refined funk, Walter’s melodic awareness and tonal superiority and the steadfast support, response and flash of Deitch’s rhythm. Where the album seems to be more than the sum of its parts are on tracks like the heated soul trance of “Meditation” or the fiery “Sleep Depraved” where it everyone is pushing their instruments to their highest degree, leaning into the musical idea and vibing off the synergistic power of the moment. 

The Hit is quite the experience and WRD is full of power, grace, and taste that can only be found at the highest levels of the music scene today. Walter, Roberts, and Deitch are a formidable musical team that are well-versed in the stylings and potential of the organ trio and inspired to reach for greater, more complex heights in the company of respected peers. The members of WRD raise the bar for each other and in doing so they elevate the quality of themselves, the music, the format, and its ever-evolving history.

WRD | The Hit

For more information on Robert Walter, please visit: RobertWalter.com | Facebook | Twitter
For more information on Eddie Roberts, please visit: NewMasterSounds.com | Facebook
For more information on  Adam Deitch, please visit: Facebook | Instagram
For more information on Color Red, please visit: Color-Red.com

Evgeny Ponomarev Quartet - Clockwise (2021 Rainy Days Records)

Clockwise, the soulful, moody sophomore release from the celebrated Evgeny Ponomarev Quartet will be released on April 30th. Over the course of the past four years, Ponomarev’s Quartet released their critically acclaimed debut record, N.N Song and performed at revered venues and festivals throughout Saint Petersburg and Moscow, (The Small Hall of the Saint Petersburg Philharmonia, the New Stage of Alexandrinsky Theatre and Igor Butman Club to name a few). Their eagerly-awaited follow up album Clockwise speaks to the group’s stellar interplay and the leader’s nuanced, cohesive compositional prowess. Ponomarev is accompanied on this release by saxophonist Andrey Polovko, bassist Grigory Voskoboynik, drummer Peter Mikheev, with guitarist Pavel Ilushin, cornetist Peter Vostokov and trombone and tuba player Anton Gimazetdinov featured on several of the album’s tracks.

1. Clock
2. What's Next?
3. Imminence
4. Hempfield
5. Pros & Cons
6. The Last Rain

Evgeny Ponomarev — piano (all except 4), fender Rhodes (4)
Andrey Polovko — tenor saxophone (1-6), soprano saxophone (2)
Grigory Voskoboynik — double bass
Peter Mikheev — drums (1-6), percussion (1,4)

Pavel Ilushin — guitar (4)
Peter Vostokov — cornet (2)
Anton Gimazetdinov — trombone, tuba (2)

Recorded at Cinelab Studio, Moscow
Recording Engineer — Alexander Perfilyev
Studio Engineer — Jacob Zakhvatkin, Dmitri Kovalyov
Mixed and Mastered by Alexander Perfilyev

Arseny Rykov Trio - Forgotten Melody (2021 Rainy Days Records)

I started to compose in music school. Through the years composing and playing music have become the main way of self-reflection and self-expression for me. I have always wanted my music to make people’s souls and minds work and to make them think about what is going on around. From my point of view, an artist has a big responsibility in front of the audience. The responsibility of being sincere, honest, and consistent in what one creates and says. I want to believe that my music is able to unite people. Especially such multicultural and international music as contemporary jazz.

The album includes the compositions that I wrote during the last few years. One can hear a slight change in my style from one tune to another but all of them have two features that are the most important for me: the leading role of the melody and harmony and their fragile beauty.

I am very grateful to the “Rainy Days” label and to Sasha Mashin in particular. People that stand behind the label do a fantastic job to support Russian culture and Russian musicians who play contemporary jazz. –– Arseny Rykov

1. Doubts
2. Faraway Beauty
3. Forgotten Melody
4. Evolutionary Piece
5. Anxiety
6. Breath
7. Broken Watch
8. Outline
9. Musical Box

Arseny Rykov – piano, composition
Nikolai Olshansky – bass
Vitaliy Epov – drums

Musical producer – Sasha Mashin
Executive producer – Eugene Petrushanskiy
Recorded at Cinelab Studio, Moscow Recording Engineer – Sasha Mashin Studio Engineer – Igor Bardashev Mixed by Sasha Mashin
Mastered by Alexander Perfilyev

Zane Carney Quartet - Alter Ego (2021 Orenda Records)

Guitarist Zane Carney today announced the debut of “Alter Ego,” a bold and bombastic improvised jazz quartet record featuring Jerry Watts Jr. on bass, Gene Coye on drums, and Katisse Buckingham on woodwinds, to be released on April 30 on Orenda Records.

“Alter Ego” embodies an adventurous new wave of free improvisation, along with modal jazz in its most electric, high-octane form. The album features a series of improvised compositions, experiments, and sketches, as well as two rearranged standards. It consists mostly of first takes, with no editing, and aims to subvert convention. In addition, all tracks were mixed from the drummer’s perspective, placing the listener in the middle of the live action, on stage with the group.

“I wanted this record to feel alive,” said Zane Carney. “This is the first time my actual improvisational spirit is being expressed in recorded format. I wanted to capture the sparks that fly when Jerry, Gene, Katisse and I improvise together, and document the untamed, almost manic spirit that LA’s late night jazz scene has produced: there is a certain energy and freedom that transcends genre. West Coast jazz is genreless, it’s reckless, it’s audacious, and it pushes boundaries. In order to summon that ferocity, we approached this session as one might approach an unmoderated debate: no judgement or rules, freely exploring new lands harmonically whenever a member felt like leading the charge.

I wanted us to be as nimble and agile as possible so we could access that core flow state more readily. Every one of us served as a conversation-leader at different points on the record, and I think you hear that especially on songs like ‘Alter’ and ‘Lost.’”
Listeners will find a compelling melding of modern jazz performance that’s been balanced by a fully analog, straight-to-tape vintage recording process. Carney is playing a custom, modified Fender, which he built using a Broadcaster neck and a Telecaster bridge pick-up, to create his signature sound. He used old-world and new-world guitar pedals and played them through a custom Siegmund Sound King, powered by a 1940s pair of 300B television tubes. “The goal was to contrast our current jazz vocabulary with old technology, and see what happens when modern jazz is played with rare, modified instruments and recorded in a fully analog process” Carney added.

The album opens with “Brain Freeze,” drawing listeners in with a meditative, haunting melody before bursting into an explosion of textures, patterns and colors, then promptly clearing the canvas for a flute/guitar battle. This sets the stage for a stream of multilayered experiments, provocative inquiries, and jarring juxtapositions, from “Alter” to “Lost,” “Found,” and finally, “Ego.” The two standards on the record showcase distinct choices: “Oleo” revisits the classic melody with an absurdist chromatic twist, while “Minority” is turned on its head as a new-wave samba.

Throughout the record, listeners may recognize guitar tones that Carney developed over the years with his various solo and group projects and collaborations, now applied in an improvisational jazz setting. As the record unfolds, tape crackling and hissing, it leads to “Things You Aren’t,” a vulnerable, intimate solo guitar piece, continuing the conversation between past and future.

At its core, “Alter Ego” revels in tensions and the new possibilities they open up. It calls for a full immersion in the present moment and seeks to expose a side of West Coast jazz that’s mostly unchronicled. Zane Carney’s quartet prompts the listener to probe and question jazz norms while investigating what creates those perceptions as the album shape-shifts from track to track. Fittingly, it mirrors the bandleader’s mission: throughout his career, Carney has made a point to defy genre expectations and refuse all stylistic affiliations, his playing standing out on its own.

1. Brain Freeze 03:49
2. Alter 05:45
3. Oleo 03:06
4. Lost 06:48
5. Pitchfork 07:54
6. Minority (feat. Katisse Buckingham) 07:57
7. Things You Aren't 02:42
8. Found 06:46
9. Ego (feat. Jerry Watts Jr. and Gene Coye) 05:13

Guitar - Zane Carney
Bass - Jerry Watts Jr.
Drums - Gene Coye
Woodwinds - Katisse Buckingham

Tracks 1, 2, 4, and 8 written by Zane Carney, Katisse Buckingham, Jerry Watts Jr. and Gene Coye
“Oleo” written by Sonny Rollins
“Pitchfork” written by Zane Carney, Mark Foster, Katisse Buckingham, Jerry Watts Jr. and Gene Coye
“Minority” written by Gigi Gryce
“Things You Aren’t” written by Zane Carney
“Ego” written by Zane Carney, Jerry Watts Jr. and Gene Coye

Produced by Zane Carney, Chris Rondinella and Adriana Stan
Mixed and mastered by Reeve Carney
Recorded live to tape at Heritage Record Co. in Burbank, CA

Album Cover Art by Marshall Roemen

Katisse is a D’Addario Woodwinds Artist, Jerry Watts Jr. uses D’Addario Strings and Kala U-Basses, Gene Coye plays Yamaha Drums and Ufip Cymbals

Lopez / Lopez - Guilt Tripping (May 10, 2021 Otomatik Muziek)

GUILT TRIPPING is the first physical release of New York- based improvisation duo LOPEZ LOPEZ, consisting of Cecilia Lopez on synthesizer and Brandon Lopez on double bass. The recordings took place somewhere in/between the chaotic lockdowns of 2020 in New York City. „Guilt Tripping“ is as angry and confrontational as it is an intimate dialogue between two well-versed artists.

Cecilia Lopez is a composer, musician and multimedia artist from Buenos Aires, Argentina, currently based in New York. She works across the media of performance, sound, installation and the creation of electronic sound devices and systems. Her work has been performed and exhibited at Museo de Arte Moderno de Buenos Aires (AR), Center for Contemporary Arts (Vilnius, Lithuania), Roulette Intermedium, ISSUE Project Room, Ostrava Days Festival 2011 (Ostrava, Czech Republic), MATA Festival 2012, Experimental Intermedia, Fridman Gallery (NY), Kunstnernes Hus (Oslo, Norway) and the XIV Cuenca Biennial, among others.

She was a Civitella Ranieri fellow in 2015 and has participated in various international residency programs. In 2019, Lopez curated the intermedia festival Folly Systems coproduced by Roulette Intermedium and Outpost Artists Resources that featured 11 international artists. Collaborators include Carmen Baliero, Aki Onda, Brandon Lopez, Carrie Schneider and Lars Laumann among others. 

Brandon Lopez is a New York-based composer and bassist working at the fringes of jazz, free improvisation, noise, and new music. His music has been praised as “brutal” (Chicago Reader) and “relentless” (The New York Times). From the New York Philharmonic’s David Geffen Hall to the DIY basements of Brooklyn, Lopez has worked beside many luminaries of jazz, classical, poetry, and experimental music, including Fred Moten, John Zorn, Okkyung Lee, Ingrid Laubrock, Tony Malaby, Tyshawn Sorey, Bill Nace, Chris Potter, Edwin Torres, Tom Rainey, Cecilia Lopez, Sun Ra Arkestra, Susan Alcorn, Mette Rasmussen, and many others.

His most recent highlight performances include opening the 2018–2019 season of the New York Philharmonic as a featured soloist in Ashley Fure’s Filament and a number of works with John Zorn, including the Zorn’s 35th anniversary of Cobra. Lopez has been a 2018 Roulette Van Lier Fellow, 2018 Artist-in-Residence at Issue Project Room, and is currently a 2020 Roulette Resident Artist.

1. A 18:54
2. B 17:24

Cecilia Lopez - Synthesizer
Brandon Lopez - Double Bass

Mastered by Isabel Schroer at Olo Mastering

Voronoi - The Last Three Seconds (May 5, 2021 Art As Catharsis Records)

Small Pond and Art As Catharsis are proud to announce the release of Voronoi’s The Last Three Seconds – a complex foray into the realms of progressive metal and jazz experimentation.

Forming off the back of contemporary jazz outfit Zeitgeist, Voronoi take the power and rhythmic complexity of heavier prog-metal and fuse it with the sophistication of classical music and jazz. A passion for science fiction thematically drives the band’s heaving and chopping style, whereas artists such as Autechre, Car Bomb, Tigran Hamasyan and J.S. Bach help shape the rigid, experimental structure of The Last Three Seconds.

“Compositionally and stylistically we have moved into much heavier territory than our contemporary jazz foundations,” says Keyboardist Aleks Podraza. “It really shows. If you were to put this record against the first tunes we played together as Zeitgeist, it would be like introducing a much capable Thelonious Monk to a less hectic Dillinger Escape Plan.”

As the first single off The Last Three Seconds, Gamma Signals serves as a toe in the water for the depth of things to come. The full-bodied riffwork captures the stop-start format of prog-metal heavyweights without being explicitly metal. Yet beyond this, glitchy, experimental electronics cut through the composition like a knife. The final product is something that captures the magic of the cosmos – a place where worlds orbit worlds, genres orbit genres. Each element remains different and unique, but still intrinsically tied to the other.

“Gamma Signals is about pulsars and how when Jocelyn Bell-Burnell first discovered them, the media thought they were aliens trying to contact us,” says Podraza. “Broadly, this song is about my love for and fascination with cosmology as a whole. That's a theme that runs through the veins of most of the album.”

Those following Vorono’s career will need little convincing on the quality of The Last Three Seconds. Collectively, band members have performed and recorded with groups like The Cinematic Orchestra, KOYO, NJYO, Jenova Collective, The Often Herd, Mik Artistik’s Ego Trip, Wandering Monster and more. This in turn has garnered sizable attention at festivals such as Leeds and Reading Festival, Download Festival, Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club - not to mention Voronoi’s thrashing set at 2019’s ArcTanGent.

The cool and collected chaos of The Last Three Seconds serves as a snapshot of this live energy, as passion and fury hum at the end of every complex composition. From start to finish, the record is nothing less than executed perfectly, undoubtedly appealing to even the most seasoned of prog-lovers. 

1. Interstellar Something
2. Gamma Signals
3. The Nauseator
4. Robots As Pathos / Robots As Menace
5. Darker The Night
6. The Last Three Seconds
7. The Outsider And The Priest
8. Home Could Be Lightyears Away

Aleks Podraza - Keyboards
Sam Quintana - Bass
Tom Higham - Drums

Calvin Travers - Guitar on Track 8
Anna Chandler - Alto Saxophone on Track 8

Tom Orrell - Mix
Tom Peters - Master

Southeast of Rain 东南有雨 - 42 Days 四十二天 (2021)

It started in the fall of 2019 in the Marin Headlands, a hilly peninsula located just north of San Francisco, when the two of us were fortunate to be Artists in Residence at the Headlands Center for the Arts. For 42 days, we would wake up to the distinct rustling sound and cold scent of the eucalyptus forest gently softening the mornings of this former military base. We were ambitious, suddenly free from the distractions of wifi, cell reception and daily obligations, and setting out to create a single piece of music every day. But as with the nature of the creative journey itself, some days were less inspired than others, so we have named each composition after the day on which its idea arose.

Continuing our sound making practice in the Headlands, we recorded our daily soundwalks, encountering unexpected sounds everywhere: resonant ring handles on rusted iron gates at the abandoned military barracks, whispering water radiators in our bedrooms, choirs of insects near Rodeo Beach at nightfall, and the “musical” pipes outside the Writer’s House after a full night of rain. We combined these field recordings with our primary instruments - voice and pipa (a Chinese string instrument), and recorded our improvisations and compositions in our temporary studio, a 2000 square-foot gymnasium once the site of service members’ basketball games and bowling matches, now a hollow, dusty space with ghostly resonance. 
Something particular emerged in that space. Internal landscape and rugged terrains, the routes to which were normally ambiguous, suddenly opened, and slowly came unraveled into something at once intimate and expansive, under the warm embrace of the 4-second-long reverb of the gym. Sometimes, layers of imagined sonic spaces appeared through subtle digital processing juxtaposed with organic field recordings and the acoustics of the space.

Listening back, it feels as if we were transported from the mundane into an otherworldly place: a magical realist world, perhaps, where the boundary between humans, animals, nature, and mystic beings are porous, transforming freely into one another.

So here it is, our first album, 42 Days, finally coming together in the bizarre winter of 2020, with each of us now isolated in our apartments in New York and California. Creating and producing this album has sheltered us from this long, cold and chaotic pandemic winter. We hope your listening journey will be as surreal, comforting, and empowering as it was for us.

1. Day 4 Constellations 繁星 03:53
2. Day 8 Between Fleeting Somethings 须臾之间 05:40
3. Day 11 Three Pipe Percussionists 水管乐 03:15
4. Day 18 To Frank the Owl 致猫头鹰弗朗克 03:07
5. Day 22 Luminescence 萤光 04:57
6. Day 25 Traveler 他看到时间的桥 03:24
7. Day 33 Improvising at the Gym (Live) 在篮球馆即兴 05:00
8. Day 42 Unwanted Bits I 边角料(壹) 03:41

All music composed, performed, recorded, mixed, and mastered by Sophia Shen and Lemon Guo

Paul Hazel & Steve Waterman - Out Of This World With Sun Ra (May 24, 2021 Bamboo Radical)

A four-track EP of Sun Ra covers, a collaboration between electronic music producer Paul Hazel and jazz trumpet maestro Steve Waterman.

Paul and Steve’s idea was to take Sun Ra material and treat it in a wholly contemporary way (rather than just producing pseudo-Arkestra arrangements). They’ve tried to retain the elements of improvisation and risk-taking that we all love about Ra, whilst developing a colourful palette of unusual modern instrumental combinations and timbres.

You’ll hear growling plunger mute trumpet redolent of Bubber Miley–era Duke Ellington set against acid synth and finger pops, Miles-like echoed trumpet above lush electronic backdrops, muted trumpet piercing through squalls of distorted guitar. Under carpets of chattering percussion heavy dub basses drive proceedings along…

1. New Day 04:08
2. Somewhere In Space 04:08
3. Mu 04:42
4. There Are Other Worlds (They Have Not Told You Of) 05:40

Sebastian Acosta O - Recíproco (2021)

Jazz and blues guitar player and composer who ecuadorian music, rock and jazz

1. Distancia 05:05
2. Imágenes Sonoras 04:48
3. Apuro con Tiempo 06:37
4. Gunner Pasillo 05:13
5. Paciencia 05:28
6. From Herbie 04:49

Sebastián Acosta : Guitar/Compositions
Carlos Iturralde: Bass
Raimon Rovira: Piano
Fidel Vargas: Drums
Daniel Pacheco: Accordion
Marcos Merino: Sinthetizer

Recorded at Magic Studio
Recording Engineer: Pablo Verduga

Mixed at La Bulla Producciones
Mixing Engineer: Renato Arias

Mastering Engineer: Juan Pablo Rivas

Jørgen Emborg & Steve Swallow - Over the Rainbow (Remastered 2021) May 7, Storyville Records

This 1992 set showcases the work of the Danish pianist/composer Jørgen Emborg with a quintet including his specially invited guest, the American bass-guitarist Steve Swallow. The leader (born in Frederiksberg on March 29 1953) had already packed a lot of musical experience into his career. Bursting upon the scene as early as 1975 at the famous Dunkerque Jazz Festival, he had become a permanent member of the Danish Radio Big Band, alongside working with such varied visiting artists as Eddie Harris, Red Rodney and Dee Dee Bridgewater. Now described as probably the most important composer of contemporary Danish jazz, he created two significant albums incorporating vocalist Mona Larsen (Ships In The Night and Face The Music) and Moonsongs with Susanne Palbol in 2005.

The career of Steve Swallow (born October 4 1940) has been equally broad-based. Taking up the bass only at the age of 18 after studying piano and trumpet, he soon joined Paul Bley and, with Bley, the free-jazz edition of the Jimmy Giuffre trio; at the other end of the stylistic spectrum, he played later in the 1960s for Art Farmer, Gary Burton and, with Burton, the Stan Getz quartet. An early champion of the writing of Carla Bley, he became her sideman (and eventually her partner) while also developing his own skills as a composer; later, he also became a successful free-lance producer, working on albums by John Scofield, for instance.

Most significantly, beginning in the 1960s, he has taken the bass-guitar from being an instrument only accepted in rock or fusion contexts to one which, through his mobile lines and veiled, singing tone, has helped to set the standard for bass playing in even acoustic jazz groups. Interestingly, Swallow’s acceptance of the JAZZPAR invitation to appear as the guest of Jørgen Emborg was, as it turned out, chronologically linked in with another guest appearance he made on a recording project by the great Danish bassist Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen. And it’s appropriate here to mention the inclusion in Emborg’s group of drummer Alex Riel who, although he had previously collaborated with Emborg, first became widely known as NHØP’s colleague in the house rhythm section of Copenhagen’s Montmartre Club in the 1960s.

Riel had preceded Emborg in being selected as one of the JAZZPAR featured artists in 1990, as had the young saxophonist Fredrik Lundin who, as composer, contributed one of the works for Lee Konitz’s performance with the JAZZPAR Nonet, also recorded as part of JAZZPAR’s 1992 celebrations.

The history of the JAZZPAR AWARDS constitutes, in retrospect, a significant development in the recognition of jazz by international arbiters of taste, and by distributors of monetary recognition. Set up by the Danish Jazz Center and sponsored by Skandinavisk Tobakskompagni, it was the first award in the jazz field to offer an international nominee not only the exposure of a concert series, but the donation of a statuette and a significant cash prize (amounting to 200,000 Danish kroner). Between 1990 and 2004, the award was made to several American performers but also, reflecting the history of the music itself, to six Europeans (Tony Coe, Django Bates, Martial Solal, Marilyn Mazur, Enrico Rava and Aldo Romano). 

1. Uneven Thinking
2. Waltz In Four
3. Forgotten Truth
4. Over The Rainbow
5. My Kind Of Blues
6. On The Second Day
7. Some Other Time
8. Password
9. Say After Me Please
10. Sweak Spedish
11. One Step At A Time
12. Impatience
13. Temporary Agreement

Jørgen Emborg - Piano
Steve Swallow - Bass Guitar
Fredrik Lundin - Tenor Saxophone, Soprano Saxophone
Alex Riel - Drums
Lisbeth Diers - Percussion

Recorded at Sun Studio in Copenhagen, March 28th and 29th, 1992