Myra Melford’s Fire and Water Quintet

!! NEW Album „Hear the Light Singing“ coming out 3.11.2023 on RogueArt

Hailed by The New Yorker as “a stalwart of the new-jazz movement” and by Disaster Amnesiac as “one of the great post-Taylor players,” pianist and composer Myra Melford (Guggenheim Fellow, Alpert Award and Doris Duke Performing Artist Award recipient) is proud to present her newest release Hear the Light Singing. According to journalist and critic Natalie Wiener, Hear the Light Singing is “a sequel of sorts to [Melford’s] 2022 release, For The Love Of Fire And Water, featuring a nearly identical all-star cast and the same set of Cy Twombly drawings from which the first album drew its name as inspiration. This album is named specifically for Melford's interpretation of the sunlight on the Mediterranean in Gaeta, Italy, where Twombly made those drawings, and the synesthetic sensation it creates.”

Joined by saxophonist Ingrid Laubrock, drummer Lesley Mok and MacArthur Fellows Tomeka Reid (cello) and Mary Halvorson (guitar), Melford bounces off the Fire & Water repertoire to create “another set of extraordinary compositions,” or “insertions,” writes Wiener, “that Melford designed to entwine with the original suite, but still stand alone.” According to Melford, “These new insertions that I composed for the [Fire & Water] tour were super fun to play, and I think gave us all a different kind of focus.”

Like its predecessor, Hear the Light Singing was recorded at New Haven's Firehouse 12 — this time, on the heels of the original’s cross-country CD release tour. “This music was really written for these performers,” Melford says. “The first [album] was what I imagined might be fun to do with them. The second set of material was really written to highlight who they are and how we play together in a much more intentional way than I was able to do before I got to know them.” Each member of the quintet is featured unaccompanied on one of the album's five pieces.

From the liner notes:
“The suite’s evolution marked a new phase of its dynamic creation, one in which Melford used the possibilities of live performance to expand on and further clarify her initial vision. ‘Performing it live gave us a much greater understanding of how expandable the music might be through improvisation,’ says Melford. She added onto some parts of the original suite, and omittedothers from the live set that were less fluid onstage than they had been in studio. Original movements that were more through-composed got new improvised sections, and others that were more open were replaced by these new ‘insertions.’”

“In keeping with the project's dynamic, living status, Melford says that listeners don’t necessarily need to try to listen to the original suites and insertions in the order the band performed them live — and that it’s possible she might present them in that order on a future live recording. Rather, the music lives independent of and within all possible presentations. These new pieces meticulously build on the fierce energy and creativity of the first suite, making for a jaw-dropping and emotional showcase of these five artists' range.”

Line Up

Myra Melford, piano
Ingrid Laubrock, sax
Mary Halvorson, guitar
Tomeka Reid, cello
Lesley Mok, drums



15.11.2023  travel to Europe
17.11.2023  STRASBOURG/France
18.11.2023  GDANSK/Poland - Klub Zak
19.11.2023  BIELSKO BIALA/Poland - Bielskie Centrum Kultury, Dom Muzyki
21.11.2023  MÜNCHEN/Germany - Jazzclub Unterfahrt
23.11.2023  DORTMUND/Germany - DomicilTickets
24.11.2023  GENEVE/Switzerland - AMR - Sud des AlpesTickets
25.11.2023  ZÜRICH/Switzerland
29.11.2023  SAN SEBASTIAN/Spain - Victoria Eugenia CubTickets
30.11.2023  return home


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