Born: March 22, 1937 Primary Instrument: Trumpet
Composer/trumpeter Jon Hassell is the visionary creator of a style of music he describes as Fourth World, a mysterious, unique hybrid of music both ancient and digital, composed and improvised, Eastern and Western. In the last two decades, his connoisseur recordings, built around a completely unique vocal trumpet style (developed in studies with Indian vocal master, Pandit Pran Nath) have inspired a generation of collaborators like Brian Eno, Peter Gabriel, Kronos Quartet and Ry Cooder. His trumpet performances show up on records of world stars like Bjork, Baaba Maal, and Ibrahim Ferrer. Film and theater credits include scores for Wim Wenders (Million Dollar Hotel, with Bono), The Netherlands Dance Theater (Lurch), Peter Sellars (Zangezi), and the theme for the hit TV show, The Practice.
His 1999 acoustic audiophile recording, Fascinoma, produced by Ry Cooder, with bansri flute master, Ronu Majumdar and jazz pianist Jacky Terrasson, inspired a new generation of European trumpet players like Arve Henriksen, Erik Truffaz, Paolo Fresu and Nils Petter Molvaer, who have all acknowledged Hassell's influence as leading beyond the gravitational pull of Miles Davis.
Montreal, Milan and Paris concerts became the raw material for magical transformation in the 2005 release, Maarifa Street / Magic Realism 2--another difficult-to-define musical fantasy stretched across geography and time, as was its 1983 namesake, Aka-Darbari-Java/Magic Realism.
In 2005, Hassell began touring with a new band, which he named Maarifa Street, playing to new European audiences from Norway to Madrid to Rome to Berlin who are astonished at the discovery of this atmospheric music which defies category: in France, Playboy writes, this celestial jazz is amazing; About his performance at the Vienna Kunsthalle, the cathedral of classical, Der Standard raves, the concert of the year.
In Tsegihi, a choral work for 100 voices and chamber group was premiered in the 11th century Norwich Cathedral in May 2008.
In early 2009, a reconnection with the prestigious ECM label with a new CD release and a Return to USA tour--from New York's Zankel Hall to Royce Hall in Los Angeles--signal the growing awareness of a master musician and a music without borders whose freshness comes increasingly into focus as time passes.
Source: Jon Hassell
Work of quite extraordinary beauty... This pan-cultural music swirls and rises like smoke... Hassell blends his experiences in such a way that the components--African drumming, Indian microtonality, Balinese tranquility-make a new palette while forfeiting none of the individual colors. --LONDON TIMES
Extraordinary, otherworldly music... --ROLLING STONE
Punkt/Sidsel Endresen/Jon Hassell, Live Remixes Vol. 1 (Jazzland, 2008)
Jon Hassell, Maarifa Street: Magic Realism 2 (Nyen, 2005)
Jon Hassell, Fascinoma (Water Lily Acoustics, 1999)
Jon Hassell, Sulla Strada (Materiali Sonori, 1995)
Jon Hassell and Bluescreen, Dressing for Pleasure (Warner Bros., 1994)
Jon Hassell and Bluescreen, Personals (Warner Bros., 1994)
Jon Hassell, "Voiceprint (Blind from the Facts)" (Warner Bros., 1993)
Jon Hassell, The Surgeon of the Nightsky Restores Dead Things By the Power of Sound (Intuition, 1992)
Jon Hassell, City: Works of Fiction (Warner Bros., 1990)
Jon Hassell/Farafina, Flash of the Spirit Jon Hassell, Power Spot (ECM, 1986)
Jon Hassell, Aka Darbari Java: Magic Realism (Editions EG, 1983)
Jon Hassell, Fourth World Volume Two: Dream Theory in Malaysia (Editions EG, 1981)
Jon Hassell/Brian Eno, Fourth World Vol. 1: Possible Musics (Editions EG, 1980)
Jon Hassell, Earthquake Island (Tomato, 1979)
Jon Hassell, Vernal Equinox (Lovely Music, 1978)
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