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Matthew Shipp

Biography by Joslyn Layne

With his unique and recognizable style, pianist Matthew Shipp worked and recorded vigorously during the 1990s, creating music in which free jazz and modern classical intertwine. He first became known in the early ’90s as the pianist in the David S. Ware Quartet, and soon began leading his own dates — most often including Ware bandmate and leading bassist William Parker — and recording a number of duets with a variety of musicians, from the legendary Roscoe Mitchell to violinist Mat Maneri, who began appearing on recordings in the 1990s. Through his range of live and recorded performances and unswerving individual development, Shipp came to be regarded as a prolific and respected voice in creative music by the decade’s close.

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