Live Studio Sessions

Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

Seattle's 45th St Brass find plenty of funky fun in the tradition of New Orleans brass bands, but they also take the opportunity to stretch the possibilities of this classic lineup of horns and drums.

Led by the baritone sax of Peter Daniel, forming a tight rhythm section with Nelson Bell on tuba and D'Vonne Lewis (playing on half of the new album) drumming for this performance.

The trombones of Jason Cressey and David Marriott play with and against each other, and trumpeter Shawn Mickelson added a bright sharpness to their sound. 

Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

On the first snowy day in the Puget Sound region, a group formed in sunny California warmed up our airwaves with a studio session filled with joy and beauty.

The New West Guitar Group formed about ten years ago by students at the USC jazz program. With Will Brahm joining founding members John Storie and Perry Smith on guitars, they added their college friend, singer Sara Gazarek for their concert at the Kirkland Performance Center.  

Parker Miles Blohm

You may have noticed many more of our exclusive KNKX studio session performances mixed into our jazz in recent weeks. The New Cool is also committed to the art of live performance, and on this week's show we’ll hear four fantastic 88.5 studio session recordings from a wide variety of modern jazz styles.

Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

Hilary Gardner and Ehud Asherie have a new release out called “The Late Set’ and we were treated to a lovely afternoon performance at our studios in Seattle.

The two met while both studying classical music together in Brooklyn, NY and quickly transitioned to jazz while playing the after hours set at Mezzrow Jazz Club in Greenwich Village.  Those late night performances were the impetus for this new release. 

Dave King of The Bad Plus
Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

They may be the longest running jazz trio in history without a line-up change, but after 17 years The Bad Plus will see a new face behind the piano in the New Year. On their final trip to Seattle together, they stopped by our studios to celebrate the extended first chapter of their influential mix of jazz, classical and rock music.

Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

Considering the career that Arturo Sandoval has had, which has included winning several Grammy Awards, performing at the Super Bowl, having his music featured in movies and television, and receiving a Presidential Medal of Freedom, you might think that he has run out of places to explore, new projects to create, or new people to perform for. 

This is far from the case.

Wayne Horvitz performing the "The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari" at The Royal Room in Columbia City.
Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

Composer, pianist and bandleader Wayne Horvitz's original score to the 1920 silent film The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, will be performed to a screening of the film live at The Royal Room in Seattle's Columbia City this Halloween night. Thursday afternoon, we were there for a preview.

Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

Celebrating the release of their long-awaited debut album Baba, drummer Tarik Abouzied's Happy Orchestra turned our listeners' frowns upside down with an energetic set live in the KNKX studios.

Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

The effervescent JUNO award-winning trumpeter and vocalist Bria Skonberg came by prior to her show at Edmonds Center for the Arts.  She brought a top notch group and wowed us with a set of music, laughter and fun.

Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

A legend of the Pacific NW blues scene, Curtis Salgado’s long list of credits include co-leading the Robert Cray Band, being the inspiration for the Blues Brothers, fronting the band Roomful of Blues, singing with Santana, and leading his own bands.

Tamir Hendelman live in the KNKX studios.
Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

Bursting with joyful energy as soon as he walked into the KNKX Seattle studios, pianist Tamir Hendelman had all of us excited in no time. By the end of his three-song performance, our studio audience were left grateful for this chance to see a perennial sideman take the lead

Hendelman grew up in Tel Aviv, Israel, but moved to California at 12 where he developed his reputation as a young talent to watch. Despite temptations to work in the film and television industry that surrounded him, Hendelman focused on jazz. 

Justin Steyer / KNKX

The Earshot Jazz Festival returns this weekend, and the fine folks at Earshot continue their tradition of presenting world class live jazz that stretches the definition of this music to its limits. In other words, fans of The New Cool have plenty to be excited about. It's a different kind of jazz festival, one or two amazing shows nearly every night for more than a month - your only excuse for missing a show is because it's sold out. That will happen, so get your tickets now!

Bill Anschell live in the KNKX studios.
Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

Pianist, Bill Anschell, was born and raised in Seattle, but didn’t settle here as a professional musician until early this century.  Since his return he’s been one of the busiest and most creative pianists in town, leading at least 2 groups of his own and performing as a sideman in several others.  Since 2005 he’s received 4 ‘Golden Ear’ awards from the Earshot Jazz Society.  And, although his primary musical outlet is acoustic jazz, he continues to experiment with electronic music.  His music—and his humorous writings about jazz and the jazz life—can be found at his website, 

Ian Hughes of Freudian Slurp
Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

Following on their debut album, Edible Complex, Seattle's modern jazz outfit Freudian Slurp have just released their latest, called Get It? Their sense of humor confirmed, the question was "do they have the music to back up their irreverence?" Yes, they do.

Formed by the Hughes Brothers, Dylan on electric bass and Ian on guitar, with drummer Kyle Kirkpatrick nearly a decade ago, Freudian Slurp have been evolving into a dramatic, cinematic powerhouse on their new album.

The New Cool: Modern Jazz In The KNKX Studio

Sep 22, 2017
Abe Beeson

This week in the KNKX studios brings two more fresh approaches to non-traditional jazz. Modern music from the Barrett Martin Group and Freudian Slurp is informed by the sounds of rock, electronic music, funk and soul. Both are based in the Seattle area, where The New Cool has been finding plenty of inspiration and material for the show.

Barrett Martin in the KNKX Studios.
Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

Drummer, bandleader and songwriter is just the beginning of a proper description of Barrett Martin. He's also the author of a new memoir exploring his musical travels around the world, with a soundtrack of course.

Dedicated world traveler is another description. He's been writing a travel blog for the Huffington Post for the past four years. Barrett also runs a record label and publishing company, currently plays drums in the all-star rock group Walking Papers, and is preparing to release more music from his rock-jazz fusion outfit in the new year.

John Watson jazzcamera.co.uk

Manchester trio GoGo Penguin make their Seattle debut at the Triple Door on Tuesday September 12.  I recently spoke with the band's bass player Nick Blacka.

Polyrhythmics
Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

In Polyrhythmics' musical blender you'll find soul, jazz, r&b, psychedelia, funk, afrobeat and echoes of traditional music from around the world. But after ten years together, they point to the Seattle music community as the driving force of their success.

Cole Schuster in the KNKX Studios.
Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

Establishing a monthly residency at Tula's jazz club in Seattle on the 2nd Thursday of each month, we put the trio disORGANized to the test with a live studio session on a Monday afternoon. They passed with flying colors.

Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

322 brought their youthful energy and exuberance back to the KNKX studios this month with an electrifying set of neo-instrumental jazz.    Their new CD is out September 8th and it’s loaded with originals.  

The New Cool: Polyrhythmics Erupting Again

Aug 25, 2017
Seattle funk-soul-jazz group Polyrhythmics
Kelly Robbins Photo & Film

Their ambitious new double album Caldera comes out September 22nd, and Seattle's Polyrhythmics begin a West Coast tour shortly after which is sure to cement their reputation as one of the country's most efficient blenders of jazz, soul, funk, psychedelic rock and afro-beat.

Navy Jazz Band Northwest in the KNKX Studios.
Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

Seafair's big Fleet Week celebrations include plenty of sailors at work and at ease around Puget Sound, and a special visit to the KNKX studios from the Navy Band's Brass Band, an almost entirely new group from their visit last year, with a fresh, funky sound.

Clad in their sparkling clean dress whites, we heard two trombones, two saxophones, and trumpet with drums - and a warning to our Leadership Circle studio audience: this is going to be loud.

Ori Naftaly of Southern Avenue perfroming in the KNKX studios in Seattle.
Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

We were lucky to get a visit from Southern Avenue, one of the hottest new blues acts on the national scene. They have only been together a couple of years and it was their first visit to the Pacific Northwest. Hailing from Memphis, Tennessee and with a debut CD on that city’s legendary soul label Stax Records, Southern Avenue has a fresh take on blues and soul.

John Pizzarelli back in the KNKX studios in Seattle, Wash.
Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

Celebrating the release of their CD “Sinatra & Jobim @ 50,” this duo brought the warmth and charm of the beloved Brazilian songwriter Antonio Carlos Jobim to the KNKX studios.

Laura Rosok in the KNKX studios.
Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

While Laura was still a student at King's High School in Shoreline, she was a guest vocalist for Lance Buller’s group that came in for a studio session a few years back. 

In 2014, Laura was named the winner of the high school division in the Seattle-Kobe Female Jazz Vocalist competition, and in 2015, Downbeat Magazine named her the national winner of their 38th annual Student Music Awards in the high school vocal jazz soloist category.

Leah Natale and Bren Plummer in the KNKX studios.
Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

Seattle Kobe female jazz vocalist of the year Leah Natale and local group Ambience are fond of the oldies -- the really old, oldies. The newest song they played for us when they dropped by for a performance in the KNKX studios was from 1953 - ("Baubles Bangles and Beads" written for the 1953 musical "Kismet" by Robert Wright and George Forrest.) Natale's very favorite type of  singing involves big band jazz. Her clear tone and voice lends to a smaller group like Ambience beautifully however.

Pearl Django performing in the KNKX studios in Seattle, Wash.
Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

After more than a quarter century, that Mighty Engine of Rhythm still swings like mad. Pearl Django’s KNKX studio session hit the ground running with Floyd Hoyt Rides Again, from their new CD With Friends Like These

Written by Pearl Django guitarist Tim Lerch, it’s named for one of the many noms de jazz of founding member Dudley Hill.

Fiddler Michael Gray says some of Dudley’s other aliases were The New Johnny Sands, and Michael’s personal favorite, H. Burnell Delahoopay. 

Alex Chadsey along with Farko Dosumoy and Jeff Busch make up duende libre.
Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

Blending the rhythms of Brazil, the Caribbean, Africa and Latin America into a groovy gumbo, Seattle's Duende Libre landed in the KNKX studios to celebrate with an exclusive performance of three songs from their new self-titled album live on 88.5.

The trio are well-traveled, keys player Alex Chadsey has spent time playing music in Mexico, drummer Jeff Busch lived in Brazil for a short spell, and bassist Farko Dosumov hails from the Central Asian country of Uzbekistan.

Michael Goude / Vibe Vision Seattle

New Orleans is so full of incredibly gifted drummers, bassists and pianists, it would probably be impossible to pick one three-piece rhythm section and call it ‘the best.’  But when you’re talking about drummer Stanton Moore, bassist James Singleton and pianist David Torkanowsky, you could make a pretty good case that these guys rule the roost in The City That Care Forgot.  However you’d rate ‘em, though, they sure are funky.

Doug Macleod outside the KNKX studios in Seattle, Wash.
Parker Miles Blohm / KNKX

Doug Macleod is a modern renaissance blues man. An award-winning musician and songwriter, he is also a columnist, radio host and teacher. As a sideman in the 1960s and 1970s he played with legends Big Mama Thornton, Eddie “Cleanhead” Vinson and Lowell Fulson among many others.

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