Oz Noy and I go back 20 some years. From the beginning, it was obvious that he was unfettered by the limitations of technique—the guy could play anything from SRV blues to avant sonic explorations. We talk about his new record with Dennis Chambers and Jimmy Haslip, the second Ozone Squeeze record, and much more.
Guitar Moderne began as a place to curate videos of live performances by modern guitarists. During Covid, with touring shut down, I posted many imaginary festivals comprised of shows on You Tube. Festivals are back, though not until the spring, and some of us are still wary of crowded clubs, so here is another virtual festival featuring legend Eivind Aarset, as well as legends in the making Julien Desprez, Liberty Ellman, Susan Alcorn, Ava Mendoza, and Mike Baggetta.
Quatuor IXI, Jan Bang, Eivind Aarset, Michele Rabbia—live at Chamber Remix Cologne
Julien Desprez—at Angelica Festival Internazionale di Musica 2021
Vijay Iyer, Liberty Ellman, Reggie Workman, Tyshawn Sorey—The Stone, NYC – Jan 22 2015
Morphic Resonance 8 Livestream (the first 50 minutes is guitarist Nick Robinson.)
Susan Alcorn and Ava Mendoza at the Cunneen—Hackett Arts Center
Ava Mendoza and Mike Baggetta duo—at First Street Green
Adam Levy and I go back decades and it was a pleasure to talk to him about how he developed his distinctive voice, what makes a modern guitarist, and more. For more about Adam’s history and great gear talk, click “more” to watch his interview with my friend Zac Childs.
One commenter on this video laments Oz Noy’s use of effects for this tune as self-indulgent. What they apparently fail to understand is that by pushing the sounds into the future, Oz is honoring another pioneer. Thelonious Monk was often misunderstood during his lifetime by people who wanted to keep hearing the basic swing of an Oscar Peterson or an Earl Hines. Many performers of Monk tunes over the years miss the spirit of his quirky style and merely play standard bebop and blues licks over the changes (Bill Frisell being a notable exception). Oz’s work here displays a mastery of modern effects, as well as blazing chops.
Robert Plant has been a musically restless soul since his youthful days with some big British band. His solo work since they split has echoed elements of the last five decades of music without ever pandering to current fads or trading on his past glories. He is a musician first, a music lover, and from all reports a nice guy. And, for a brief time, he worked with a decidedly different guitarist.