Music

CDs and MP3s (Scroll down for audio samples)

Transformation

Expulsion of the Triumphant Beast
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ECM recording artist David Rothenberg, clarinetist and philosopher, performs duets with jazz scholar and "helluva piano player" Lewis Porter. They cover a few familiar tunes and perform improvisations that twist these familiar instruments in accessible but surprising directions. Elements of funk, ambient electronica, and classical impressionism all surface in this colorful collection which defies all expectations of what such a duo might sound like.

David Rothenberg, clarinet, bass clarinet, electronics
Lewis Porter, keyboards

Transformation
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The music on this CD is a collaboration between two pianists/keyboardists who are longstanding friends and colleagues: Lewis Porter--also known as a jazz historian, and Rutgers-Newark professor--and Marc Rossi--also known as a composer, and Berklee College professor. They met initially at the University of Rochester in 1971, and performed in Boston during the years around 1980. They have much in common--the love of jazz, 20th century classical music, Indian music, and all kinds of improvisation. Yet they each have, they hope, a distinctive voice, so that the two complement each other.

Transformation
Italian Encounter

Dharma Jazz: Just Four
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This exciting new cooperative quartet combines elements of North Indian classical music with jazz. With innovative sound from unique instrumentation -- two melodic and two percussive - traditional Indian ragas and original compositions take flight!

Badal Roy: tabla, percussion, voice
Lewis Porter: piano, Yamaha Motif synthesizer
Freddie Bryant: acoustic and electric guitars
Karttikeya: cymbals, gongs, percussion, djembe (track 1) and Hang drum (track 3)

Italian Encounter
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The critics raved about this CD--see Reviews. Recorded live in Italy, July 29, 2006. Furio Di Castri and Fabrizio Sferra are among the best--and best known--bassists and drummers in Europe. Furio has played with Michael Brecker, Joe Lovano, Charles Lloyd, Steve Lacy, Dave Liebman, Pharoah Sanders, and many others, while Fabrizio worked with Chet Baker, Lee Konitz, Mal Waldron, Joe Pass, Kenny Wheeler, the acclaimed trio "Doctor 3" and many others. Porter writes: "On the morning of the concert, we rehearsed for about 50 minutes, less than an hour. Yet, as you will hear, we play like old friends, with close listening and a constant interaction between us." (The Rutgers University Research Council provided a grant that paid some of the expenses of preparing this CD.)

Italian Encounter
Italian Encounter

Second Voyage
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Eight of the ten pieces are Porter's compositions; Dave Liebman guests on two. The CD was regularly featured on WBGO and WKCR and has received positive mentions. For example, in a review for the leading British magazine Jazzwise (July 2002), jazz scholar Brian Priestley wrote that Porter is "a fine pianist and bandleader... a strong ensemble player and versatile soloist." Recorded in Manhattan, June 22, 2000. (Partly supported by a Rutgers Research Council Grant.)

Other Recordings

Jews From Hell/Radical Jewish Acculturation
Allen Lowe: (released March 2007) Porter is featured on a long piano solo (I use Allan's written theme and then improvise in the style of it; then I get more free); it also features (on separate tracks) Matthew Shipp, Mark Ribot and Randy Sandke, among others.

Play Fiddle Play
Matt Glaser: recorded April 1986 at Berklee College, Boston (Flying Fish Records 70555, 1990). Glaser is the Chair of Strings at Berklee; Porter plays in the band and he takes an alto saxophone solo on "Foggy Mountain Special." http://www.rounderstore.com/product.asp?P=1896405552

Generations
Zahav, the group of the fantastic Cantors Martin Goldstein and Adam Goldstein, performs their original Jewish music and arrangements of traditional songs. Recorded in 1991. Porter plays drums on about half of the tracks! http://www.zahav-music.com/Generations.htm

MP3s

Medley - "After the Rain" and "Naima"
Dave Liebman, sax, and Lewis Porter, piano, perform a medley of Coltrane's "After the Rain" and "Naima" (the "upside down" version of the theme that Coltrane once used). Recorded at Le Petit Faucheux, Tours, France, Nov. 26, 2007

Solo Improvisation
During his duet concert with Dave Liebman, Porter premiered this new unaccompanied piano piece that was a "hit" of the event. Recorded at Le Petit Faucheux, Tours, France, Nov. 26, 2007

Cherokee Variation
This improvisation on the chords of "Cherokee" comes from Dr. Porter's concert in Italy, July 29, 2006, which has been released on CD on the Altrisuoni label. The bassist, Furio DiCastri and the drummer, Fabrizio Sferra, are renowned throughout Europe.