Check out 5 video clips below from Matt's Live DVD/CD
can order the DVD directly from Garrison Jazz and get a personalized
signed copy: GarrisonJazz.com
with Jazz-Rock.com - DECEMBER
on your LIVE DVD/CD! It is quite excellent. How did it come about?
the music? the video? the players?
Thanks. The DVD was an idea that I had floating around for a couple
of years and it finally came to fruition when I met Pete Teresi and
Carolina Saavedra from Pefaur Productions (www.pefaurproductions.com).
I originally wanted to just make a live recording but of course once
I had the option of filming the recording session it all just came
in to place. The music is primarily from my first CD. We actually
recorded even more material that didn't make it to the final output
but that's for a reissue with bonus tracks later. All the musicians
except for Jojo Mayer were on my first recording and that's who I
wanted to feature on the live DVD.
2. How about your ShapeShifter CD? How did it come together? What
was the inspiration?
The title itself is kind of a self description. I feel I have become
somewhat of a mutating character that takes on the shape that is necessary
for the type of music work at hand. It's also a statement of independence
of thought. Having started my own record label has given me a sense
of hope, pride and strength when composing music in the sense that
I have no one to answer to when I have an idea to layout. The project
was constructed over a period of 2 years and just took on a life of
it's own once I got to about the 4th composition. Everything just
rolled on naturally and as new influences became available they appeared
in the music immediately. Shapeshifter was really inspired by my first
record, Squarepusher, Bjork and Sergei Prokofiev's music.
3. How do you approach composition and live
improv with such original ideas?
I guess I just don't pay attention to what is traditionally or technically
considered jazz. I just do what I like and dare to make my own decisions
concerning sound, style, approach, concepts... I hate limitations
and evaluations. That's not my field. The worst thing is that those
limitations and fears usually come from other musicians in my same
field. Really some sad shit....
4. What are some golden moments with all
the great musicians you have played with?
The golden moments have been just knowing and feeling that while you're
performing with these geniuses you share a common bond, even if it's
just for a split second, that we're all moving in the same direction.
I love it when I'm welcomed into a space to share the experience of
music, and over the years I've been blessed to be welcomed into spaces
of pure musical bliss. I'm very thankful to all of them...
5. What's going on with GJP and what is your
vision for your future?
Well first I'd like to thank all of the incredible people that took
the "plunge" and actually purchased my 2 latest projects "Shapeshifter"
and "Matt Garrison Live". I posted a notice on my site prior to the
release of them both stating that file swapping and CD ripping were
only going to make my future productions impossible and that I needed
folks to seriously consider supporting my label rather than opposing
it. In the past 3 months I've sold more CD's and DVD's than ever before
and I cannot possibly thank people enough for their support and respect.
We are responsible for our actions and that's the most important reality
to understand at the moment. Now that my production war chest is basically
full again I'm going to take a breather and decide which project to
develop next. Whichever it will be, I will begin that actual work
early next year.
Thanks for having me as a guest on your site.
- Matt G.
NO LIMITS, NO FEAR
By John Pritchard
first heard Matt Garrison's amazing bass playing on Joe Zawinul's
"My People" in
1996 and John McLaughlin's "The Heart of Things" in 1997.
Tracing back Matt's roots to his legendary dad, the late Jimmy Garrison
(bassist with John Coltrane), it is cool to see a son not only carrying
the jazz bass torch of his father, but also blazing new musical
trails with incredible five string chordal bass music of his own!!!
Check out the video clips on the left to see what I mean.
In 1998 Matt took the bull by the horns and founded GarrisonJazz
to record, produce and market his music. In 2001, his self titled
solo debut CD "Matthew
Garrison" received critical acclaim immediately and
featured guitarists David Gilmore and Adam Rogers, keyboardist Scott
Kinsey, drummers Gene Lake and Ben Perowsky, percussionist Arto
Tuncboyacian, saxaphonist Dave Binney,
with Pete Rende on accordion and Amit Chaterjeeon on sitar. Many
of the tracks are featured on Matt's Live
DVD with much of the same lineup with additional
talent such as Jim Beard on keyboards, JoJo Mayer on drums, and
2002, Matt toured with Herbie Hancock on the "Future 2 Future"
tour and can be seen jammin on the "Future
2 Future" DVD
Herbie produced from a gig at the Knitting Factory in LA.
In March of 2003, Matt began his most adventurous album, "Shapeshifter,"
which was released
with his Live
this past August 2004. The album features guitarist Adam Rogers,
keyboardists Jim Beard and Scott Kinsey, vocalists Sabina Sciubba,
Joy Garrison and Veronika Garrison, drummer JoJo Mayer, percussionist
Arto Tuncboyacian, Elliot Mason on Bass Trumpet, Gregoire Maret
on harmonica, and a special appearance by Will Calhoun on Wusuli.
What I love about this album is the fact that Matt has no fear of
mixing in electronic programming with more familiar composition
styles in the world fusion, instrumental, vein. He is so much more
than "one of the world's best bass players." The 10th
tune, "Changing Paths" blew me away and features Matt
playing all the tracks with some phenomenal acoustic guitar to boot!
While all the music showcases superb musicianship throughout, it
is Matt's tasty computer-driven morsels that surprise and engage
my curious ear (check out "I Told Ya So" and "Mirror
Image" mp3's below). Matt is simply not afraid to explore the
boundaries he 'shapeshifts' into with the wide range of musicians
he plays with, and the original music he composes and performs.
As yet further proof of his fearlessness, the 9th song, "Exchange,"
(an unquestionable "Bjork" tribute song) is an absolute
delight in that it features his wife Veronica's magical singing.
It is produced with a perfectly processed vocal effect. The end
result creates an ethereal, almost spiritual dimension that is certainly
better sounding than anything found on commercial radio! No smooth
jazz, retro-Cher/top 40 vibe here... just simply great music, period.
Check out this poetic excerpt from the "Exchange"
(translated from Icelandic of course):
"The stars fall into my palms
I put them into me where you are
I rise up against the sky
Open and ready to receive the world."
This is what I mean by No Fear, No Limits...you don't expect it...
it is about being an artist and going for it...and he does it with
confidence and grace.
Matt is fluent in so many musical styles. He has no problem being
both an excellent band leader and a soloist prominently showcasing
his innovative bass playing up close and in your face (but not like
Jaco on the ego end, or Marcus Miller on the "not quite enough
bass soloing" side... just the right amount). While I suspect
that feeling of musical "Unity" is what it is all about
for Matt Garrison the band leader (listen below), his modern electronic
ventures into new and forbidden worlds of jazz is what it's really
about for his artistic spirit ...and, damn, what a soulful, together,
tight, unified sound he delivers... so happy and so badass five
string strummin free!
samples from "Shapeshifter":
Told Ya So mp3
Matthew Garrison was born June 2, 1970 in New York. Here he spent
the first eight years of his life immersed in a community of musicians,
dancers, visual artists and poets. After the death of his father
Jimmy Garrison (John Coltrane's bassist), his family relocated to
Rome, Italy where he began to study piano and bass guitar. In 1988
Matthew returned to the United States and lived with his godfather
Jack Dejohnette for two years. Here he studied intensively with
both Dejohnette and bassist Dave Holland. In 1989 Matthew received
a full scholarship to attend Berklee College of Music in Boston.
Here he began his professional career with the likes of Gary Burton,
Bob Moses, Betty Carter, Mike Gibbs and Lyle Mays to mention a few.
Matthew moved to Brooklyn, New York in 1994 and has performed and
recorded with artists such as Herbie Hancock, Joe Zawinul, Joni
Mitchell, Steve Coleman, Pat Metheny, John Mclaughlin, The Gil Evans
Orchestra, John Scofield, Chaka Khan and many others.
Visit Matt's site at www.garrisonjazz.com