Tag Archives: matt wilson

Different Strokes: Quintet Releases from Matt Wilson, Taylor Haskins, and Joe Fiedler

Three of the more original voices in the jazz world—drummer Matt Wilson, trumpeter Taylor Haskins, and trombonist Joe Fiedler—have new releases that show three different faces of jazz. Continue reading

Two from the Heart: Releases from Matt Wilson and Kevin Zoernig

The latest release from drummer Matt Wilson, featuring a large ensemble, and the new solo effort from pianist Kevin Zoernig have one thing in common: they both mine deep seams of emotional content. Continue reading

The Matt Wilson Quartet Gets Personal

Matt Wilson Quartet. Photo by Tom Foley.

Matt Wilson Quartet: Kirk Knuffke, Jeff Lederer, Wilson, Chris Lightcap. Photo by Tom Foley.

Drummer, composer, and Palmetto Records recording artist Matt Wilson doesn’t want you to just hear the music. “I’m always advocating to my students—and myself, too—that music
conjures more than just an aural response,” he says. “We want to be able to see music, we want to be able to taste music, we want to be able to smell music.”

He’s been entirely successful in provoking a synesthetic response from me. I just recently
realized that that’s one of the things I find so compelling in his music: it stimulates silent movies in my head for which he’s providing the soundtrack—and the title. Monikers such as “That’s Gonna Leave a Mark,” the title track of a previous album, or “Some Assembly Required,” off his quartet’s latest release, Gathering Call, just scream “Lights. Camera. Action.” The vivid musical personalities of the guys in the band become the characters in my little skully cinema.

“If you play music that conjures other images other than just someone hearing it, you’re striking [the listener]—either positively or negatively,” he says. “At least you’re getting some sort of
response out of them. I’d rather have that than the trough of blah, which is kind of like”—
dismissively—“ ‘Oh, yeah, it’s nice.’ ”


Wilson’s music, which he prefers to call “our music,” in reference to the contributions of the entire band, will never be accused of spending any time in the “trough of blah.” Concise, congenial, and energetic, it reflects his personality—and those of his band mates: Kirk Knuffke (cornet), who passed through here recently with Boom Tic Boom; Jeff
Lederer (tenor and soprano saxes, clarinet), and Chris Lightcap (bass). They’ll be offering up a smorgasbord of synesthesia at the
Outpost this coming Thursday.

Continue reading