Catching Up With Chris Potter: The Personal Stamp

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Monday August 27, 2012

From All About Jazz

Catching Up With Chris Potter: The Personal Stamp
By: R.J. Deluke

Chris Potter is one of the most visible saxophonists on the scene in recent years. There are reasons for that. Not only does he have incredible chops, inner drive, intensity and the impulse to always be creative’“as if that’s not enough’“he can fit into any musical situation and find a way to contribute.

Coming through the ranks, including while he was a still a student at the Manhattan School of Music, he could be found playing in any situation. He had an association with pianist Marian McPartland and trumpeter Red Rodney. Potter hung out on the New York scene during his schooling and it helped him afterward. He was on the bandstand with free-thinking drummer Paul Motian, and accompanying the extremely subtle guitarist Jim Hall. He’s played with the Mingus Big Band, and worked for a time with Steely Dan. He can be found in situations like accompanying singer Luciana Souza at the Newport Jazz Festival. He’ll be part of a Joe Henderson tribute this year at Lincoln Center and an all-star group at the Monterey Jazz Festival.

He still leads his own band, Underground, and has a new recording coming out next year with a different aggregation of fine musicians, but Potter is constantly being called upon for other projects. That’s what happens when you are one of the best of your generation on his instrument and are already influencing young, aspiring players.

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