Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Interviews, Musicians and Writers

May I recommend for your edification over the Holiday weekend an Internet journey to several websites.

If you have never perused the offerings at, the home of pianist/journalist Ethan Iverson (pictured left), do so now. There's a 4-part interview and discussion with and about Henry Threadgill that is worth spending the time to read. No one composes and orchestrates like Threadgill and he's been at it over 4 decades. The conversation between he and Iverson has lots of insights into the music, into the history of American music (you might call it jazz but Threadgill would not) and into the influences that shaped Threadgill.  Just follow this link and get cracking -

And, for a taste of The Bad Plus (the trio with Iverson, bassist Reid Anderson and drummer Dave King) in concert with the HR Big Band, with arrangements by Jim McNeely, go to  The music is quite impressive, sound and picture quality very good, and well worth another chunk of your time.

The jovial drummer/composer/arranger John Hollenbeck is the subject of the cover interview at NewMusicBox, the web magazine of The American Music Center. He chats about the Claudia Quintet (with videos), about his Large Ensemble and about how he approaches composing and playing.  It's not as long as the Threadgill piece but very informative.  Here's the link -

If you want investigate more about creative music, go to - A Blog Supreme at - now that "The Treme" is into season 2, ABS author Patrick Jarenwattananon and Josh Jackson (he of The Checkout on WBGO-FM) are breaking down each episode. 

Also, for a viewpoint across the Northern border, Peter Hum of The Ottawa Citizen continues to be one of the more readable writers about the contemporary music scene.  Not only does write about jazzers from the United States but he also does a wonderful job of giving exposure to many Canadian artists.  For example, his column about pianist/composer David Braid led me to download his 2 CDs from - click on the name to find out more.  To check out Mr. Hum, go to and dig in. 

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