John Abercrombie American guitar player, composer, band leader
and teacher, born Dec 16 1944 in Port Chester, New York - was part of
Prize Winner Enrico Rava's JAZZPAR 2002 Sextet.
Abercrombie began imitating Chuck Berry guitar licks at 14 and later
enrolled at Bostons Berklee College of Music. He met the Brecker
Brothers who were in the process of forming a jazz-rock hybrid of far-reaching
influence. Abercrombie performed on Dreams debut album.
Abercrombie graduated in 1969 and soon became one of
New Yorks most in-demand session musicians. He played with Billy
Cobhams group Spectrum and attracted widespread attention. But it
was ECM albums, like Timeless and Gateway, in
the mid-70s that really received critical acclaim.
Abercrombie formed a quartet including pianist Richie
Beirach, bassist George Mraz and drummer Peter Donald, which made three
recordings. Other significant recordings are drummer Jack DeJohnettes
Directions and New Directions albums and the releases with fellow guitarist
Ralph Towner. The list goes on: The sixth-sense interaction
trio with bassist Marc Johnson and drummer Peter Erskine. Trios and sometimes
a quartet seem to be Abercrombies favored formats as a leader. As
a sideman he has made important imprints recording with Joe Lovano.
Abercrombie enjoys jazz standards he knows them
well and feels free playing them. He has also combined tradition and evolving
technologies thereby expanding musical boundaries. He used guitar synthesizer
in the 80s and has recorded with the composer and synthesizer player Vince
Three hugely experienced musicians, The Gateway trio
of Abercrombie, Dave Holland and Jack DeJohnnette, reunited in 94 and
performed with dazzling ease on two releases.
Abercrombie is a durable artist there is often
more to his playing than reaches the ear first time around. He uses his
thumb in a post Wes Montgomery style and may perform evocative modern
jazz with influences from Jim Hall and Tal Farlow. His playing ranges
from light, upbeat, buoyant and dancing to hard-edged, howling, dynamic