Anthony Braxton

From Academic Kids

Anthony Braxton (born June 4, 1945) is a composer, multi-reedist and pianist. He has created a large body of highly complex work. Much of Braxton's music is jazz oriented, but he has also been active in free improvisation, orchestral music and has written operas.

One critic has written that "Although Braxton exhibited a genuine — if highly idiosyncratic — ability to play older forms (influenced especially by saxophonists Warne Marsh, John Coltrane, Paul Desmond, and Eric Dolphy), he was never really accepted by the jazz establishment, due to his manifest infatuation with the practices of such non-jazz artists as John Cage and Karlheinz Stockhausen. Many of the mainstream's most popular musicians (Wynton Marsalis among them) insisted that Braxton's music was not jazz at all. Whatever one calls it, however, there is no questioning the originality of his vision; Anthony Braxton created music of enormous sophistication and passion that was unlike anything else that had come before it." [1] (http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=11:66vsa9lgb23f~T1)

Early in his career, Braxton led a trio with violinist Leroy Jenkins and trumpeter Leo Smith.

In 1968 Braxton recorded For Alto, one of the first full-length albums for unaccompanied saxophone. The album's songs were dedicated to Cecil Taylor and John Cage, among others. The album influenced other artists like Steve Lacy (soprano sax) and George Lewis (trombone), who would go on to record their own acclaimed solo albums.

Through much of the 1970's Braxton led a quartet with Dave Holland (double bass) and Barry Altschul (drums); the rotating brass chair was variously filled by trumpeter Kenny Wheeler, or trombonists Ray Anderson or George Lewis (trombonist).

Braxton's regular group in the 1980's and early 1990's was a quartet with Marilyn Crispell (piano), Mark Dresser (double bass) and Gerry Hemingway on drums was called "his finest — and longest standing — band". [2] (http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=10:pl08b5z4msqj~T1)

His music is highly theoretical and mystically influenced, and he is the author of multiple volumes explaining his theories and pieces published by Frog Peak Music.

Since 1995 Braxton has been composing and performing almost exclusively what he calls Ghost Trance Music, which introduces a steady pulse to his music and also allows the simultaneous performance of any piece by him.

Braxton is an avid chess player.

Discography

  • 1968 3 Compositions of New Jazz
  • 1968 For Alto
  • 1969 Anthony Braxton [Affinity]
  • 1971 Together Alone Delmark
  • 1972 Saxaphone Improvisations, Series F
  • 1972 Town Hall (1972) [live]
  • 1974 In the Tradition, Vol. 1
  • 1974 In the Tradition, Vol. 2
  • 1974 Quartet Live at Moers New Jazz Festival
  • 1974 Duo, Vols. 1 and 2
  • 1974 First Duo Concert [live]
  • 1974 Trio and Duet Sackville
  • 1974 New York, Fall 1974
  • 1974 Live at Wigmor
  • 1975 Five Pieces (1975)
  • 1975 Anthony Braxton Live
  • 1975 The Montreux/Berlin Concerts [live]
  • 1975 Live
  • 1976 Creative Orchestra Music (1976)
  • 1976 Elements of Surprise: Braxton/Lewis Duo
  • 1976 Duets (1976)
  • 1976 Donaueschingen (Duo) 1976
  • 1976 Quartet (Dortmund) 1976 [live]
  • 1976 Solo: Live at Moers Festival
  • 1977 Four Compositions (1973)
  • 1978 Creative Orchestra (Koln) 1978
  • 1978 For Four Orchestras
  • 1978 Alto Saxophone Improvisations (1979)
  • 1978 Birth and Rebirth
  • 1978 NW5-9M4: For Trio
  • 1979 Performance (9-1-1979) [live]
  • 1979 With Robert Schumann String Quartet
  • 1979 Seven Compositions (1978)
  • 1980 For Two Pianos
  • 1980 The Coventry Concert [live]
  • 1981 Composition No. 96
  • 1981 Six Compositions: Quartet
  • 1982 Open Aspects (Duo) 1982
  • 1982 Four Compositions (Solo, Duo & Trio)
  • 1982 Six Duets (1982)
  • 1983 Four Compositions (Quartet) 1983
  • 1983 Composition No. 113
  • 1984 Prag (Quartet-1984) [live]
  • 1985 Seven Standards (1985), Vol. 2
  • 1985 London (Quartet-1985) [live]
  • 1985 Seven Standards (1985), Vol. 1
  • 1985 Quartet (London) 1985 [live]
  • 1985 Six Compositoins (Quartet) 1984
  • 1986 Five Compositions (Quartet), 1986
  • 1986 Moment Précieux [live]
  • 1987 Six Monk's Compositions (1987)
  • 1987 ... If My Memory Serves Me Right
  • 1988 19 (Solo) Compositions (1988)
  • 1988 Victoriaville 1988 [live]
  • 1988 2 Compositions (Jarvenpaa) 1988, Ensemble
  • 1988 Voigt Kol Nidre
  • 1988 The Aggregate
  • 1988 London Solo (1988)
  • 1989 Eugene (1989)
  • 1989 Seven Compositions (Trio) 1989
  • 1989 Vancouver Duets (1989)
  • 1989 2 Compositions (Ensemble) 1989/1991
  • 1989 Eight (+3) Tristano Compositions, 1989
  • 1991 8 Duets: Hamburg 1991
  • 1991 Duo (Amsterdam) 1991 [live]
  • 1991 Composition No. 107 (Excerpt, 1982)/In CDCM
  • 1991 Composition No. 98
  • 1992 Wesleyan (12 Altosolos) 1992
  • 1992 Willisau (Quartet) 1991[Pt. 2] [live]
  • 1992 Composition No. 165 (For 18 Instruments)
  • 1992 (Victoriaville) 1992 [live]
  • 1993 Duets (1993)
  • 1993 9 Standards (Quartet) 1993 [live]
  • 1993 Trio (London) 1993 [live] Leo
  • 1993 Twelve Compositions: Oakland, July 1993
  • 1993 Quartet (Santa Cruz) 1993 [live]
  • 1993 Charlie Parker Project 1993
  • 1993 Duo (Leipzig) 1993
  • 1993 Duo (London) 1993
  • 1994 Composition No. 174: For Ten Percussionists
  • 1994 Small Ensemble Music (Wesleyan) 1994 [live]
  • 1994 Duo (Wesleyan) 1994
  • 1994 Knitting Factory (Piano/Quartet) 1994, Vol. 2 [live]
  • 1995 11 Compositions
  • 1995 10 Compositions (Duet) 1995
  • 1995 Performance Quartet
  • 1995 Octet (New York) 1995
  • 1995 Solo Piano (Standards) 1995
  • 1995 Two Lines Lovely Music
  • 1995 Knitting Factory (Piano/Quartet) 1994, Vol. 1 [live]
  • 1995 Four Compositions (Quartet) 1995
  • 1995 Seven Standards 1995
  • 1996 Composition No. 192
  • 1996 Composition No. 193 [live]
  • 1996 Tentet (New York) 1996 [live]
  • 1996 Live at Merkin Hall
  • 1996 14 Compositions (Traditional) 1996
  • 1996 Composition No. 102: For Orchestra & Puppet Theatre
  • 1996 Sextet (Istanbul) 1996
  • 1996 Composition No. 173
  • 1997 Silence/Time Zones
  • 1997 Amsterdam 1991 [live]
  • 1997 4 Compositions (Quartet) 1995
  • 1998 Compositions No. 10 & No. 16 (+101)
  • 1999 Duets (1987)
  • 1999 4 Compositions (Washington D.C.) 1998
  • 2000 Composition No. 94:
  • 2000 Quintet (Basel) 1977 [live]
  • 2000 Ten Compositions (Quartet) 2000
  • 2000 Nine Compositions (Hill) 2000
  • 2001 Compositions/Improvisations 2000
  • 2001 Composition No. 247
  • 2001 Composition No. 169 + (186 + 206 + 214)
  • 2001 Four Compositions (GTM) 2000
  • 2001 8 Compositions (Quintet) 2001
  • 2002 This Time
  • 2002 (Coventry) 1985 [live]
  • 2002 (Birmingham) 1985
  • 2002 Duets [Wesleyan] 2002
  • 2002 8 Standards (Wesleyan 2001) [live]
  • 2002 Solo (Koln) 1978
  • 2002 Ninetet (Yoshi's) 1997, Vol. 1
  • 2003 Four Compositions (GTM) 2000
  • 2003 Two Compositions (Trio) 1998 [live]
  • 2003 Solo (Milano) 1979, Vol. 1 [live]
  • 2003 Anthony Braxton [2003]
  • 2003 Ninetet (Yoshi's) 1997, Vol. 2 [live]
  • 2003 Solo (NYC) 2002 [live]

External links

Listening

  • Epitonic.com: Anthony Braxton (http://www.epitonic.com/artists/anthonybraxton.html) featuring tracks from 19 Solo Compositions, 1988
  • Most of Braxton's recordings for Leo Records are available from emusic (http://www.emusic.com/search.html?mode=x&QT=anthony+braxton).
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