Become a member and get exclusive access to articles, live sessions and more!
Start Your Free Trial

The Bad Plus–Same New Song

Jazz's quirkiest band takes on Stravinsky

The Bad Plus--(l. to r.) Reid Anderson, Ethan Iverson, Dave King
The Bad Plus premiere"The Rite of Spring" at Duke University, March 2011
The Bad Plus, 2004
The Bad Plus, 2007

Ethan Iverson is sitting on the couch in his sunlit Brooklyn living room, cradling a cup of espresso and trying out a theory about Igor Stravinsky. “You certainly can argue that prog-rock comes from The Rite of Spring,” he says. “There’s a very literal line.”

Iverson thinks Dave Brubeck belongs on that line too: Like Stravinsky, he made “chanty tunes with odd meters that somehow people liked,” explains the pianist, 41. The same could be said for the Bad Plus, the raucous improvising trio that Iverson co-founded 14 years ago. The band has always made a kind of outsider art, so a mixed lineage feels like the right one.

Start Your Free Trial to Continue Reading

Become a JazzTimes member to explore our complete archive of interviews, profiles, columns, and reviews written by music's best journalists and critics.
Originally Published