Courage with Robert Creeley
Courage is drummer Chris Massey, sax / reed player John Mills and bassist Steve Swallow. On The Way Out is Via the Door, a collaboration of music and poetry, they are joined by Robert Creeley, reading his texts over the sultry, smoky, softly-rendered strains of late-night jazz played by the band. This is beautiful music, a session of intimate, creative jazz conversation.
Robert Creeley was one of America's greatest poets; he was the link between the Beat poets of Greenwich Village and those of Black Mountain College. Creeley long acknowledged the influence of jazz and improvised music on his work, and in fact considered himself a musician in these contexts. His work was the source of inspiration for Home, the 1980 ECM album in which Swallow set Creeley's words to music sung by Sheila Jordan. He also performed and recorded with New York sound experimentalists Mercury Rev.
Before turning to the acoustic bass at age 14, Steve Swallow studied piano and trumpet. He has played with many of the greats, including Pee Wee Russell, Buck Clayton and Vic Dickenson. In 1960 he began to play with Paul Bley, The Jimmy Giuffre Trio and George Russell’s sextet, which featured Eric Dolphy and Thad Jones. He also performed in the early '60s with Joao Gilberto, Sheila Jordan, and bands led by Benny Goodman, Marian McPartland, Chico Hamilton, Al Cohn and Zoot Sims, Clark Terry and Bob Brookmeyer and Chick Corea. He has placed first (electric bass) in the Downbeat International Critics Poll since 1983, and in the Downbeat Readers Poll since 1985.
Impressionistic jazz drummer Chris Massey was born in Buffalo, New York and now resides in Switzerland. He has performed with some of the most influential artists of the modern era, including Bill Frisell, David Torn, Christy Doran, Kevin Eubanks, Hans Koch, Chris Duarte, and Brian Gephart.
Texas-based composer and reedman John Mills has performed with Kenny Wheeler, Carla Bley, Roscoe Mitchell, Tonina Horta, Billy Hart and Mitch Watkins.
The Way Out is Via The Door
Chris Massey, John Mills and Steve Swallow with Robert Creeley in a collaboration of jazz and poetry
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