It takes fortitude to buck convention, which suggests that an entire program of ballads just won’t make it in these swift, dot-com times. Fortitude, a bucket of self-assurance and a kind of quiet confidence in one’s instrumental abilities and session mates are a pre-requisite when traveling down such a relatively risky path. Such are the attributes of Mark Turner. After all, here’s a young tenor player who looked not so much to John Coltrane for sustenance, as to such disparate craftsmen as Warne Marsh (evidence: check Turner’s role in the Lennie Tristano tribute in New York this month). Turner’s approach to the tenor is arid and thoughtful in a quite intriguing way that marks him as a developing original.
Become a JazzTimes member to explore our complete archive of interviews, profiles, columns, and reviews written by music's best journalists and critics.