Jason Moran

  • Cecil Taylor

    IN THE MID-1990S, I moved from Houston, Texas, to New York to study at the Manhattan School of Music. I routinely walked from Harlem to SoHo, walks that would basically take all day, and I’d make unplanned pit stops while learning the city. One of these walks was specific: Someone told me about a Cecil Taylor performance downtown. When I arrived at the intersection of Houston and Mercer, I saw a piano on a small stage in the middle of the street. An audience of about three hundred lined the sidewalk. I found are hydrant to stand on. Cecil began playing, growling and crying his way through the

  • Roy Haynes and the Fountain of Youth Band, Charlie Parker Jazz Festival, Marcus Garvey Park, New York, August 25, 2012.

    Jason Moran

    1 Roy Haynes and the Fountain of Youth Band (Marcus Garvey Park, New York, August 25) At age eighty-seven, drummer Roy Haynes represents the finest that jazz has to offer. During his band’s performance at the 2012 Charlie Parker Jazz Festival, the energy percolated to the point that Haynes grabbed the microphone and began to sing the O’Jays chorus “Money, money money mooo-ney.” When he asked for some ladies to step up, six women of different generations rushed onstage to dance with him. This was a master displaying supreme artistry as a drummer, a bandleader, and an entertainer.

    2 Björk (Flow