EMMET COHEN

Master Legacy Series | Featuring Ron Carter

January 16, 2020 | 7:30 PM

EMMET COHEN

Multifaceted American jazz pianist and composer Emmet Cohen has emerged as one of his generation’s pivotal figures in music and the related arts. A recognized prodigy, Cohen began Suzuki method piano instruction at age three, and his playing quickly became a mature melding of musicality, technique, and concept. Downbeat observed that his “nimble touch, measured stride and warm harmonic vocabulary indicate he’s above any convoluted technical showmanship.” In the same spirit, Cohen himself has noted that playing jazz is “about communicating the deepest levels of humanity and individuality; it’s essentially about connections,” both among musicians and with audiences. He leads his namesake ensemble, the “Emmet Cohen Trio,” is a vibrant solo performer, and is in constant demand as a sideman. Possessing a fluid technique, an innovative tonal palette, and an extensive repertoire, Cohen plays with the command of a seasoned veteran and the passion of an artist fully devoted to his medium.

Emmet Cohen is committed to the intergenerational transfer of artistic knowledge, history, and traditions. His signature professional undertaking is the “Masters Legacy Series,” a celebratory set of recordings and interviews honoring legendary jazz musicians. He serves as both producer and pianist for each album in the series. The goal of this landmark, ongoing project is to provide musicians of multiple generations a forum to transfer the unwritten folklore that is America’s unique musical idiom.  Cohen has observed that playing jazz “is enriched immeasurably by connecting and studying with jazz masters, forging backward to the very creation of the art form.”  Volume one of the “Masters Legacy Series” features drummer Jimmy Cobb, and volume two spotlights bassist Ron Carter. Future “Masters Legacy Series” releases include Cohen’s recordings with Benny Golson, Tootie Heath, and George Coleman.

Emmet Cohen’s exacting keyboard artistry has garnered numerous accolades from the international jazz community. He placed first in both the American Jazz Pianists competition (2014) and the Phillips Piano Competition at the University of West Florida (2011). He was a finalist in the prestigious American Pianists Association’s Cole Porter Fellowship (2015, 2011) and the Thelonious Monk International Piano Competition (2011). Cohen has appeared in world-renowned jazz events, including the Newport, Monterey, North Sea, Bern, Edinburgh, Detroit, and Jerusalem jazz festivals, as well as the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival and the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics in Russia. He has also performed at the Village Vanguard, the Blue Note, Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola, Birdland, Jazz Standard, London’s Ronnie Scott’s, Jazzhaus Montmartre in Copenhagen, Lincoln Center’s Rose Hall, the Cotton Club in Tokyo, and the Kennedy Center, and was received in the Oval Office by President Obama. He is currently Hammond B-3 organist-in-residence at Harlem’s SMOKE jazz club.

Besides leading the “Emmet Cohen Trio,” Cohen has appeared regularly with Ron Carter, Benny Golson, Jimmy Cobb, George Coleman, Jimmy Heath, Tootie Heath, Houston Person, Kurt Elling, Billy Hart, and Brian Lynch, among others. Cohen is also a member of Christian McBride’s trio “Tip City,” the “Herlin Riley Quartet,” and the “Ali Jackson Trio,” and serves as pianist and music director for jazz vocalist and television personality Lea DeLaria. His recordings include Masters Legacy Series featuring Ron Carter (2018); Masters Legacy Series featuring Jimmy Cobb (2017); New Directions (2016) with Herlin Riley; Questioned  Answer (2014), co-produced with Brian Lynch; Infinity (2013),  featuring his Italian Trio; and his acclaimed debut CD In the Element (2011), with bassist Joe Sanders and drummer Rodney Green.

RON CARTER

RON CARTER is among the most original, prolific, and influential bassists in jazz history, with more than 2,200 albums to his credit, an accomplishment honored in the 2015 Guinness Book of World Records. He has recorded with greats including: Tommy Flanagan, Gil Evans, Lena Horne, Bill Evans, B.B. King, the Kronos Quartet, Dexter Gordon, Wes Montgomery, and Bobby Timmons, Jaki Byard, Eric Dolphy and Cannonball Adderley

From 1963 to 1968, Ron was a member of the classic and acclaimed Miles Davis Quintet. He was named Outstanding Bassist of the Decade by the Detroit News, Jazz Bassist of the Year by Downbeat magazine, and MVP by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences. He earned two Grammy awards, one in 1993 for Best Jazz Instrumental Group, and another in 1998 for Call Sheet Blues from the film “Round Midnight”.

Ron has composed music for the classic films A Gathering of Old Men, The Passion of Beatrice and Blind Faith.

In 2014, Ron received the medallion and title of Commander of the Order of Arts and Letters, France’s premier cultural award, by the French Minister of Culture.

A bestselling author, Carter’s books include Building Jazz Bass Lines and his autobiography Finding The Right Notes, soon to be an audiobook. In 2016 he published Ron Carter’s Comprehensive Bass Method, an advanced level book pioneering the use of QR codes to demonstrate technique in printed books. Additionally, Ron authored The Ron Carter Songbook, a collection of 119 original compositions.

In 2017, Ron expanded his reach to his considerable worldwide following on Facebook, where he regularly posts helpful information and back-stories for bass players and fans alike. His “Facebook Live” events are enjoyed around the world.

Ron teaches frequently at master classes around the world. He has also received 5 honorary doctorates, most recently from The Juilliard School.

Ron continues to tour worldwide, playing to sold-out crowds across Europe, Asia, and South America.

EMMET COHEN’S MASTERS LEGACY SERIES

Emmet Cohen’s mission is to celebrate the last remaining legendary jazz artists from an era long gone, by documenting, featuring, and preserving their artistry and excellence in the later stages of their careers. As the producer of the Masters Legacy Series, Cohen has released two acclaimed recordings including Volume 1 with Jimmy Cobb and Volume 2 with Ron Carter.  Subsequent recordings are scheduled to follow. This is truly a once in a lifetime opportunity to experience the renowned bassist Ron Carter in the Emmet Cohen Trio.

“Despite being one of the most original, identifiable, and recorded musicians of the 20th century, throughout our live recording, Mr. Carter’s bass lines and musicality continuously surprised and inspired me to reach for new harmonic heights. I felt his dedication to the moment and his stoic presence, yet I also felt him taking daring risks, pushing my capabilities, and driving each tune down an untested path. Even listening back to the album, experiencing Mr. Carter is exhilarating.”   Emmet Cohen