Desert Island Discs: Johnathan Blake

Few post-Boomer drummers have lived jazz history so immersively and thoroughly as Philadelphia-born Johnathan Blake, for whom immortals like McCoy Tyner, Elvin Jones and Grover Washington’s – friends and bandmates of his father, violinist John Blake – were family. Now 45, Blake established an enviable sideman c.v. with the Mingus Big Band, Russell Malone, Brian Lynch, Joe Locke, Alex Sipiagin, Tom Harrell, Kenny Barron, Maria Schneider, Ravi Coltrane and Dr. Lonnie Smith.

In 2011, Blake launched the documentation of the leader stage of career; his four superb recordings have featured eminent peers and elders like Chris Potter, Mark Turner, Linda May Han Oh and Jaleel Shaw; for Blake’s latest, Homeward Bound for Blue Note, he’s assembled a quintet, Pentad, with alto saxophonist Immanuel Wilkins, vibraphonist Joel Ross, keyboardist David Virelles, and bassist Dezron Douglas. Blake acknowledges Philly roots throughout his session with Desert Island Disks, crafting an unfailingly dynamic program of percolating grooves and strong melodic intention.

Tue, Jan 25
7:00 pm

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