All About Jazz

Home » Musicians » Michael Oien

Michael Oien

Ever since he graduated from Berklee in 2004, bassist Michael Oien has been an important part of the New York jazz scene, appearing on a countless number of dates as a sideman. Recently he recorded his debut as a leader, the consistently creative And Now for Fresh Sound’s New Talent label. “This is my most important artistic statement so far,” says Michael, “writing my own music and recording it with my own band.”

And Now has Michael Oien utilizing some of his favorite musicians. “In sidemen, I look for players with individual sounds who are flexible, and musicians who concentrate less on the technical aspects of their instruments and more on expressing themselves in the music.” The CD features six of Michael’s post bop originals performed by a quintet that also includes altoist Nick Videen (“A great all-around musician with a huge sound”), guitarist Matthew Stevens, pianist Jamie Reynolds and drummer Eric Doob. The music, which includes such inventive pieces as the picturesque “In The Early Autumn,” the exhilarating “Mad To Live,” the quietly passionate “Smile This Mile” and the three-part “Dreamer,” is forward-looking and adventurous while also being accessible and swinging.

Michael Oien was born in Silver Spring, Maryland, growing up in Ashland, Wisconsin. He played several instruments as a youth including the guitar and piano. While he was a guitarist in rock bands as a teenager, he began to focus more on the bass when he was in middle school, playing with the school orchestra. “While growing up, I listened to everything…Ray Charles, The Beach Boys, Chuck Berry…a lot of rock and roll. My parents listened to jazz and there was always music playing in our house. When I was around 12, the school orchestra teacher took all of the bass players down to Madison, Wisconsin for a workshop with Richard Davis which made a big impact on me.”

Read more

Tags

Album Review
Take Five With...
Read more articles
“After 10 years of flying under the radar on the New York jazz scene, bassist Michael Oien has emerged as a leader, prodigious composer and potent improviser on his long overdue debut, And Now.” —Bill Milkowski

“An exceptional bassist with a large tone and an advanced style... an impressive debut for Michael Oien, both as a bassist and as a composer.” —Scott Yanow

Photos

Albums

And Now

Fresh Sound Records
2015

buy

Shop Amazon

All About Jazz needs your support

Donate
All About Jazz & Jazz Near You were built to promote jazz music: both recorded albums and live events. We rely primarily on venues, festivals and musicians to promote their events through our platform. With club closures, limited reopenings and an uncertain future, we've pivoted our platform to collect, promote and broadcast livestream concerts to support our jazz musician friends. This is a significant but neccesary step that will help musicians and venues now, and in the future. You can help offset the cost of this essential undertaking by making a donation today. In return, we'll deliver an ad-free experience (which includes hiding the sticky footer ad). Thank you!

Get more of a good thing

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories and includes your local jazz events calendar.