07/25/02

Classical Jazz

In the past, classical music purists often assumed jazz artists had no knowledge of Western classical music, and were therefore inferior musicians. The image of the classical-music ignorant jazzman has long since been proven wrong, from Ellington pouring over classical scores to Bird studying Stravinsky, but a new album from some top name jazz musicians will serve as one piece of concrete evidence. On August 20 Classical Jazz Records will release The Classical Jazz Quartet Plays Bach.

The quartet, which features Stefon Harris on vibes, Kenny Barron on piano, Ron Carter (pictured) on bass and Lewis Nash on drums, released its first album, Tchaikovsky's "The Nutcracker", last year. The musicians have backgrounds in classical music: Carter played in the Eastman School's Philharmonic Orchestra, Harris was a member of the New York Philharmonic and Barron studied classical piano as a boy. The Bach album was recorded on April 24, 2002, at Avatar studios in New York, and was engineered by Jon Anderson and mastered by Mark Wilder and Seth Foster at Sony Music Studios, also in New York. Bob Belden and Suzanne Severini produced the 2-track analog recording.

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