The IRT mourns the passing of one of the greatest jazz drummers to slap a trap, Mr. Paul Motian, who died in his beloved Manhattan on Tuesday November 22, 2011 from complications surrounding the rare blood and bone marrow disorder called myelodysplastic syndrome.
Please visit the Columbia University campus radio station today, WKCR-FM, as they are playing a 24-hour long tribute to Motian by digging deep into the crates for some of his greatest performances of the last 50 years as both a bandleader and a sideman for such talents as Bill Evans, Thelonious Monk, Paul Bley, Keith Jarrett, Arlo Guthrie, Don Cherry, Bill Frisell, Lee Konitz and Charlie Haden to name but a few.
His drum work in the piano trio setting with Evans and Jarrett, however, is some of the greatest rhythmic intimacy you will ever hear in your life, and one needs to look no further than The Bill Evans Trio's essential 1961 recording Sunday at the Village Vanguard and Keith Jarrett's 1968 classic Somewhere Before for proof of that statement.
For more information regarding the passing of this great scion of the snare, read Ben Ratliff's eloquent obituary in The New York Times.
And make sure to check out one of Motian's finest and final performances on acetate by picking up the outstanding 2011 ECM release Live at Birdland featuring Paul with Konitz, Haden and Brad Mehldau.