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2012: Jack Wright


Jack Wright taught at various universities beginning in the 1960s, and left academia in the early 70s to engage in radical politics. Later that decade he was directing his energies into playing the saxophone. He is today one of a small group of musicians in North America that has played free improvised music exclusively since that time. Through years of near constant touring, often performing for audiences in cities and towns where improvised music had never before been heard, he came to be regarded as an underground legend, the ""Johnny Appleseed of Improvised Music"". He has deliberately avoided the conventions and socio-aesthetic limitations of musical careerism to pursue his own vision. Although his de-professionalized approach sets him apart from most musicians at his level of accomplishment, his art has always grown, expanded, and synthesized new musical experience. He is unquestionably an original and virtuosic saxophonist, a master improviser who is deeply lyrical, with humor never far away. His playing ranges from pitch-oriented to sound-oriented, what he calls “post-electronic” saxophone.

Wright lives in Easton PA, centrally located on the East Coast. He travels regularly in Europe as well (and in Japan in 2006), for the sake of making new musical and human connections, bringing Europeans to the U.S. to play with himself and others. His inspiration has provided crucial impetus to hundreds of musicians, even as he maintains that he is the one inspired by them. His vast list of collaborators includes some “name” luminaries (in the past ten years alone, Axel Dorner, Michel Doneda, Andrea Neumann, Denman Maroney, Tatsuya Nakatani, and Bhob Rainey) but more significant are the many obscure greats he has played with. He has made over 40 recordings (many published on his own Spring Garden label), performed in over 20 countries, and written extensively and insightfully about music and society for journals such as Improjazz (France) and Signal to Noise (US), as well as his own website, Spring Garden Music.


Artist (photo by Photographer)

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