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Sebastian Weiss

Sebastian Weiss

Considering that he’s constantly traveling back and forth between New York City and Berlin, it comes as no surprise that German pianist and composer Sebastian Weiss’ sensational sophomore CD Momentum (Fresh Sound/New Talent) bristles with urgently moving rhythms. Even composition titles such as “No Stop,” “Currents” and “6 a.m. Elevated” suggest movement.

Weiss attended the Manhattan School of Music, where he studied with Mark Soskin and the late Jaki Byard. “He was a very charismatic person,” says Weiss of Byard. “When you go to [music] school, you usually deal with very systematic people that teach you jazz theory, all the scales and rigorous practices. He was none of that. He showed me a very personal approach to everything. He would tell me to write a tune for my girlfriend, while other people would tell me that I had to write a tune with a Dorian scale.”

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