The American trumpeter and composer Jon Hassel’s sound influenced guitarists like Eivind Aarset and, well, me, as well myriad other musicians. He passed away on June 26, 2021. This year he would have turned 85 and to honor him Nasjonal jazzscene in Oslo, Norway put on a terrific memorial concert on his birthday, March 22.
Celebrating his music were Nils Petter Molvær, Arve Henriksen and Kristina Fransson on trumpet, Harpreet Bansal on violin, Eivind Aarset on guitar, Jon Balke on keys, Helge Norbakken on percussion, Jan Bang on live sampling, and Erik Honoré on live sampling and keys. All of these Norwegian musicians have either collaborated with Hassel or have a relationship to his music. The music is composed or inspired by the ground-breaking trumpeter.
The memorial concert was produced in collaboration with Punkt, which Hassell visited several times, and was organized in consultation with Hassell’s family.