The Second Derrick Hodge

November 30, 2016 by Simon Rentner
Filed under New Music


Here we get the three sides of Derrick Hodge: the multi-instrumentalist, the songwriter, and the producer. He showcases those talents on his latest Blue Note Records offering "The Second" and in this insightful conversation.

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Tumi Mogorosi's Project Elo

November 8, 2016 by Simon Rentner
Filed under New Music


South African drummer and composer Tumi Mogorosi talks about his debut recording Project Elo, featuring a trio of drums, bass, and sax. Its distinctive and most important ingredient: a vocal quartet.

Recorded at the 2016 Cape Town International Jazz Festival.

Introducing Zahili Gonzalez Zamora

November 1, 2016 by Simon Rentner
Filed under New Music


In this edition of "My Music," the Cuban pianist, singer, and composer Zahili Gonzalez Zamora introduces us to her debut recording "Z-isms," an album featuring a multitude of styles such as jazz, salsa, and R&B.

Photo by Tom Ehrlich

Alexis Cuadrado's Poetica

October 10, 2016 by Simon Rentner
Filed under New Music


Composer Alexis Cuadrado celebrates his new album Poetica, a marriage of multilingual poetry and jazz featuring poets Rowan Ricardo Phillips and Melcion Mateu. Plus, the bassist shares his score for Charlie Chaplin's The Immigrant (1917) and reflects on the silent film's relevance in the age of Trump.

Watch its live performance  at The New School University Center from April 27 2015, here.

Assistant producer: Sarah Geledi.

The Many Sounds of Jeff Parker

October 5, 2016 by Simon Rentner
Filed under New Music


The multi-faceted guitarist Jeff Parker brings sounds from his latest releases -- his jazz/hip-hop project The New Breed, Tortoise's newest album The Catastrophist, and a duo with Rob Mazurek. Recorded at the Chicago Jazz Festival.

Ibrahim Maalouf: Bridging Two Worlds Together

September 29, 2016 by Simon Rentner
Filed under New Music


This French-Lebanese jazz trumpeter bridges worlds together. He may be a superstar overseas --appearing in cameos with Sting, Mali pop singers Amadou & Mariam -- but here in the States he's just getting started. Maalouf plays a four-valve trumpet, custom designed by his father, which allows him to explore both Eastern and Western modes in music. He talks about that, plus his musical tribute to Oum Kalthoum, the legendary feminist Arabic singer of the 20th century.

Maalouf celebrates Oum Kalthoum this Friday, September 30th and Saturday, October 1st at Jazz at Lincoln Center's Appel Room.

Jamison Ross

September 15, 2016 by Simon Rentner
Filed under New Music


Drummer, vocalist, and winner of the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Competition Jamison Ross talks about his debut album "Jamison" (Concord), his favorite drummers, and touring with Snarky Puppy.

Nihil Novi: Marcus Strickland

September 1, 2016 by Simon Rentner
Filed under New Music


Saxophonist Marcus Strickland talks about his Blue Note Records debut Nihil Novi, which means "nothing new," an album produced by Meshell Ndegeocello. Plus, music from the Blue Note 75 Band featuring Robert Glasper, Lionel Loueke, Kendrick Scott, Ambrose Akinmusire, and Derrick Hodge. Recorded at the Montreal Jazz Festival.
(C) Deneka Peniston

Lionel Loueke on Rock, Montreal, & Herbie

August 2, 2016 by Simon Rentner
Filed under New Music


Gaia stands for Mother Earth in Greek mythology and it's the name of Lionel Loueke's latest Blue Note offering. The guitarist sits down with Simon Rentner at the Montreal International Jazz Festival to talk about his listening habits growing up in West Africa, from Jimi Hendrix to Mariam Makeba, plus he shares his favorite all-time Herbie Hancock composition.

Lionel Loueke plays Celebrate Brooklyn's Prospect Park Bandshell with Herbie Hancock Thursday, August 11th.

Velvet Portraits: Terrace Martin at FIJM

July 19, 2016 by Simon Rentner
Filed under New Music


Alto saxophonist Terrace Martin may be better known in the hip-hop game as a producer for Kendrick Lamar's blockbuster recordings. Here we listen to his jazz side on his recording Velvet Portraits featuring Kamasi Washington, Rose Gold, The Emotions, and more. He shares that music plus his love for Q-Tip and Tribe Called Quest at the Montreal International Jazz Festival. Assistant Producer: Sarah Geledi.

Terrace Martin plays with Herbie Hancock in Prospect Park's Bandshell August 11th.