Source: Greenleaf Music by Dave Douglas.
Dave visits legendary drummer and composer Andrew Cyrille to talk about how he organizes his music, why he calls Dave “David,” and his recent record Lebroba with Wadada Leo Smith and Bill Frisell. They also discuss his upbringing in a Haitian family in Brooklyn, NY, and his beginnings as a jazz musician. We hear excerpts of Cecil Taylor’s Unit Structures and Conquistador!, which Mr. Cyrille played on in 1966. Humorous and insightful comments ensue.
Source: Heavy Metal Bebop.
Wendy Eisenberg is a jazz guitarist by training who can often be heard playing just about anything but conventional jazz guitar. That includes free improv, art pop, noise and avant-garde punk with radically inventive bands like the now-defunct Birthing Hips and the currently active Editrix. In 2018, during an episode of Jeremiah Cymerman’s excellent 5049 Podcast, Wendy — who uses gender-neutral pronouns — made a passing mention of their love for the Australian death-metal band Portal, and at that point, I knew I wanted to speak to them for Heavy Metal Bebop. We met up in March and delved into Wendy’s vast musical universe. Topics discussed include: how hearing Sonny Sharrock helped expand their musical horizons, why Portal is their favorite band ever, why they feel like an outsider in both jazz and metal, how Birthing Hips flourished within the context of higher education, why they’re not a fan of jazz covers of pop and rock tunes, how their early love for Pantera informs the music of Editrix, what they took away from playing with Curtis Fuller and Earl Klugh, and much more.
Source: burning ambulance.
Bassist Jamaaladeen Tacuma is a legend. He was barely out of high school when guitarist Reggie Lucas recommended him to Ornette Coleman, who hired him for what would become Prime Time. He stayed with Coleman for a dozen years, working with James “Blood” Ulmer and recording albums on his own at the same time. He’s been part of some really amazing records that I love, including Derek Bailey‘s Mirakle, James Carter‘s Layin’ in the Cut, James Brandon Lewis‘s Days of FreeMan, and the Young Philadelphians‘ Live in Tokyo. He also produced the new Last Poets album, Transcending Toxic Times.
In this interview, we talk about a bunch of different aspects of his career, his sound, his style, his upbringing in Philadelphia, and his interest in fashion. In addition to being a musician, Tacuma runs a consignment boutique in Philadelphia called the Redd Carpet Room, where he sells designer clothes he picks up while traveling around the world. This guy is sharp in every possible way, so I really think you’re going to enjoy this conversation a lot. I know I did.
Source: Heavy Metal Bebop.
To call drummer Ches Smith merely versatile would be selling him way short. He’s played the most advanced jazz with artists such as Tim Berne and massively heavy rock with bands like Theory of Ruin, and covered just about every point in between with projects like Marc Ribot’s Ceramic Dog and Trevor Dunn’s Trio-Convulsant. In this conversation, he discusses his early years playing Poison covers, how he absorbed the the language of bebop drumming, his time on the road with Mr. Bungle, the inner-workings of Trio-Convulsant and Theory of Ruin (a band that featured former Fudge Tunnel and Nailbomb guitarist-vocalist Alex Newport), what he learned from touring alongside Slayer’s Dave Lombardo and the Melvins’ Dale Crover, the metal metamorphosis of Good for Cows (his duo with bassist Devin Hoff), how he was eventually able to bring his full range of jazz and rock know-how to the table in a single setting, and much more. To learn more about Ches, go to chessmith.com