John Hébert To Weekend At Cornelia Street Cafe

September 24, 2009
Photo by Scott Friedlander

Photo by Scott Friedlander

Bassist/composer John Hébert will celebrate his long-awaited debut release as a leader, Byzantine Monkey (Firehouse 12 Records), with a two-night stand at New York’s Cornelia Street Cafe starting tomorrow night.

Hébert’s sextet, also called Byzantine Monkey, will feature saxophonists Michaël Attias and Tony Malaby, multi-instrumentalist Adam Kolker, percussionist Satoshi Takeishi and drummer Michael Sarin (sitting in for Nasheet Waits for these two dates).

Known as “an indispensable presence on the local scene” (Hank Shteamer, Time Out New York) and “a bassist of deep intuition and extensive experience as a sideman” (Nate Chinen, New York Times), Hébert is one of the busiest bassists in New York and a regular in the Rising Star Acoustic Bass category of DownBeat’s annual Critics Poll for the past three years.

“On his first album as a leader he displays a sonic vision that’s all his own,” writes DownBeat‘s Peter Margasak, “even while sticking mostly to a support role. The leader has written nine lovely themes, some ebullient, some sorrowful, some fragile, and he directs his cohorts to elucidate and dance around the melodies with a mix of freedom and communicativeness. In particular, the intertwining lines of Tony Malaby, brawny and fat, and Michaël Attias, lithe and stinging, provide an exuberant dance on contrast.”

The Hartford Courant‘s Richard Kamins adds, “Byzantine Monkey takes the listener out of the everyday world into a landscape of mature melodies, splendid musicianship and highly creative interplay. It’s an aural landscape one can return to time and again, uncovering new paths to follow.”

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DownBeat: John Hébert’s Byzantine Monkey

September 14, 2009


Bassist/composer John Hébert continues to gather accolades for his long-awaited debut release, Byzantine Monkey (Firehouse 12 Records). The latest is a four-star review by Peter Margasak in the October issue of DownBeat.

“On his first album as a leader he displays a sonic vision that’s all his own,” Margasak writes, “even while sticking mostly to a support role. The leader has written nine lovely themes, some ebullient, some sorrowful, some fragile, and he directs his cohorts to elucidate and dance around the melodies with a mix of freedom and communicativeness.”

“In particular,” he adds, “the intertwining lines of Tony Malaby, brawny and fat, and Michaël Attias, lithe and stinging, provide an exuberant dance on contrast.”

Hébert and his sextet, also called Byzantine Monkey, will celebrate this release at New York’s Cornelia Street Cafe on September 25th and 26th.


John Hébert Featured In AllAboutJazz-New York

September 11, 2009
Photo by Scott Friedlander

Photo by Scott Friedlander

Andrey Henkin’s feature on bassist/composer John Hébert in the September issue of AllAboutJazz-New York is now available online.

In this article, Hébert discusses his influential experiences working with the legendary Andrew Hill and its impact on his own work as a leader. His debut recording, Byzantine Monkey (Firehouse 12 Records), was released in June.

Hébert and the band from that record, also called Byzantine Monkey, will celebrate the release with back-to-back nights at New York’s Cornelia Street Cafe starting September 25th.

These performances will feature saxophonists Michaël Attias and Tony Malaby, flautist/clarinetist Adam Kolker, percussionist Satoshi Takeishi and drummer Michael Sarin.


Exclaim!: John Hébert’s Byzantine Monkey + Carl Maguire’s Sided Silver Solid

August 6, 2009


David Ryshpan reviews Firehouse 12 Records‘ latest releases in the new issue of Exclaim!

He calls bassist/composer John Hébert‘s Byzantine Monkey “a strong debut of a new band of old colleagues.” The group, which is also called Byzantine Monkey, features saxophonists Tony Malaby and Michaël Attias, flautist/clarinetist Adam Kolker, drummer Nasheet Waits and percussionist Satoshi Takeishi.

In his review of Sided Silver Solid, the second release from keyboardist/composer Carl Maguire’s longstanding group Floriculture, he writes, “the new, expanded version of the group provides him with a vast range of colours at his disposal, and Maguire dispatches the various combinations effectively.”

He adds, “The front line of violist Stephanie Griffin, with her background in contemporary classical music, and Oscar Noriega’s alto sax and clarinets blend in novel ways with Maguire’s piano, bolstered by the rock solid rhythm section of bassist John Hébert and drummer Dan Weiss. The tunes are marked by angular yet captivating melodies.”


New CDs From Maguire And Hébert Out Today On Firehouse 12 Records

June 16, 2009

Firehouse 12 Records is proud to announce the June 16th release of its first two recordings of 2009.

Sided Silver Solid (FH12-04-01-009) is the second recording by keyboardist/composer Carl Maguire’s longstanding group Floriculture and its first as a quintet with new members Stephanie Griffin (viola) and Oscar Noriega (clarinets). The group, which has performed Maguire’s sophisticated compositions around New York since 2001, also features John Hébert (bass) and Dan Weiss (drums).

Hébert makes his long-awaited debut as a bandleader on Byzantine Monkey (FH12-04-01-010) after nearly a decade as one of New York’s most in-demand sidemen. The record documents his sextet of the same name featuring frequent collaborators Michaël Attias (alto and baritone saxophones), Tony Malaby (tenor and soprano saxophones), Adam Kolker (flutes and bass clarinet), Nasheet Waits (drums) and Satoshi Takeishi (percussion).

Carl Maguire’s Floriculture will mark the release of Sided Silver Solid a week from tonight on June 23rd at Monkey Town in Brooklyn.

The CD release party for Byzantine Monkey will be a two-night affair at New York’s Cornelia Street Cafe on September 25th and 26th.


John Hébert’s Debut CD Reviewed In Hartford Courant Blog

June 13, 2009

Byzantine Monkey

Richard Kamins reviewed bassist/composer John Hébert‘s forthcoming debut, Byzantine Monkey (Firehouse 12 Records), this past week in his Hartford Courant blog, See! Hear!

The disc, which features Hébert’s band of the same name featuring Michaël Attias (alto and baritone saxophones), Tony Malaby (tenor and soprano saxophones), Adam Kolker (flutes and bass clarinet), Nasheet Waits (drums) and Satoshi Takeishi (percussion), officially hits the streets on June 16th.

“First and foremost,” Kamins writes, “Hébert has his own sound, not an easy accomplishment for a bassist.  Big, rich tones and a penchant for melodic lines (even in the most frenetic pieces) makes his playing stand out. Byzantine Monkey takes the listener out of the everyday world into a landscape of mature melodies, splendid musicianship and highly creative interplay. It’s an aural landscape one can return to time and again, uncovering new paths to follow.”


TONY’s The Volume Spotlights Upcoming Hébert CD

May 28, 2009

Byzantine Monkey

In a new post from this morning, Time Out New York‘s music blog, The Volume, shines a light on bassist/composer John Hébert’s forthcoming debut, Byzantine Monkey, on Firehouse 12 Records.

Also included is a streaming version of the second track on the record, “Acrid Landscape”.

The disc officially hits the streets on June 16th.