Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Jazz or Bust: NYC Interviewer on Tour, Auburn-Opelika in His Sights

Jason Crane
If you're a jazz fan (or if you're an interview fan, for that matter) then you should get to know more about Jason Crane. He's a published poet who is also host of the jazz interview free podcast The Jazz Session (thejazzsession.com). Through his interviews, he touches on just about every possible outcropping of jazz music. He will interview complete unknowns, successful young players and many of the old guard.

Crane has the ability to encourage out the pith of his guests' philosophies, strategies, and points of view while making jazz more accessible to his listeners. Now, after about five years and 370+ interviews (a lot more if you include what he did before starting The Jazz Session), he is going on tour.

A short list of some of the hundreds of people Jason Crane has interviewed at thejazzsession.com:
John Abercrombie
Ray Anderson
Tim Berne
Jane Ira Bloom
Terence Blanchard
Ron Carter
Paquito D'Rivera
Eddie Daniels
Jack Dejohnette
John Ellis
Peter Erskine
Billy Hart
Jimmy Heath
Fred Hirsch
Vijay Iyer
Steve Kuhn
Rudresh Mahanthappa
Ellis Marsalis
Cecil McBee
Christian McBride
Marian McPartland
John Patitucci
Nicholas Payton
Sam Rivers
Sonny Rollins
David Sanborn
Henry Threadgill
Jeff Watts
Matt Wilson
Rufus Reid
Dave Leibman

...and more
Crane will move through the world, starting with the eastern US from NYC to New Orleans. The plan is to highlight jazz musicians wherever he goes. Beyond mid-June, his schedule is tentative, but the intent is to come through the Auburn-Opelika area.

There is no benefactor behind this effort, no filmmaker, no nonprofit, no public radio station, no federal or private grant. Crane is backed by dozens of members, individuals who have committed to supporting him on a monthly or yearly basis with no tax deduction. This is how good his show is.

At left I've made a list of some of the musicians he's interviewed and whose names you may recognize. Look over the website and listen to a few shows. In each show Crane includes excerpts of the artist's music. You can subscribe to the free podcast using iTunes or an RSS reader.

Also, check out "Crashing on Couches to Talk to Musicians" a recent article about him on A Blog Supreme, National Public Radio's jazz blog.

And here's another article by The Village Voice: "Q&A: Jason Crane Takes The Jazz Session On the Road With The 'Jazz Or Bust' Tour".

Then support the tour by making a gift here: http://thejazzsession.com/tour. By joining the tour supporters, you can get benefits like a postcard from the road, a t-shirt, a CD, a copy of his poetry book (more about his poetry at jasoncrane.org), even a CD every month for 10 years.

Jason Crane and the people he has interviewed have changed my feelings and opinions about music, or at least revealed to me more about what they truly are. As a listener, a player and a businessman in this field, the decisions I make from this point on will have his fingerprints on them, and I will forever be indebted to him for that. The least I can do is give him a couch to crash on for a night or two.

A Few Recommended Interviews

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