June 13, 2024

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Interview with John Basile: Music can offer solution to life as well as you can’t bullshit yourself in music especially jazz

Interview with guitarist John Basile. An interview by email in writing. 

Dear readers, get to know more about our US/EU Jazz – Blues Festivals and the activities of our US/EU Jazz – Blues Association in the capitals of Europe, we will soon publish program for 2024, enjoy in the July – August – Brussels, Berlin, Prague, Warsaw, Sofia, new addreses this year, also in Amsterdam, Budapest.

JazzBluesNews.com: – Please explain your crea0ve process …

John Basile: – For playing live it’s a process of focus and geting to that “in the moment”place so that you can react to fellow musicians. For composing it can come from a simple phrase or a melodic rhythm that will generate an idea to build from.

OUR US/EU Jazz and Blues Festivals 2024

JBN: – What are your main impulses to write music?

JB: – New challenges. The amount of genre’s and sub genre’s today make for an interesting mix of styles and influences. Composing is a way to organize those influences to create something new.

JBN: – What do you personally consider to be the incisive moments and pieces in your work and/or career?

JB: – Playing/recording duets with John Abercrombie, Jim Hall, Michael Brecker. All three offer a unique perspective.

OUR US/EU Jazz and Blues Festivals 2023

JBN: – Before we jump into anything historical, can you tell us about what we can expect musically this evening?

JB: – For live performances I’ll alway mix originals with standard but also a pop tune that lends intel to improvisation.

JBN: – Are there sub-genres within the jazz field that you tend to stay away from or focus on?

JB: – “Soul” music from the 70’s/80’s was alway a strong influence and I try to mine from that volume of material for recording. That material always can provide a fresh “look” and spark recognition from an audience.

There could be talk or advertising about your CD

JBN: – When your first desire to become involved in the music was & what do you learn about yourself from music?

JB: – Music provides the backdrop for not only career oriented aspects but life itself. It provides a consistent lesson always and represents real “truth”. Music can offer solution to life as well as you can’t bullshit yourself in music especially jazz.

JBN: – How would you describe and rate the music scene you are currently living?

JB: – I’m currently producing cues for film/TV libraries. It’s providing a backdrop to explore the relationship of music to picture a huge emotional challenge at times.

JBN: – When you improvise, you know where you’re going. It’s a maRer of taking certain paths and certain directions?

JB: – Yes, and it’s the art of combing things you already know that connects to moments of “freedom” in which you truly are “in the moment”. That’s where the magic happens.

OUR US/EU Jazz and Blues Association 2023

JBN: – Do you ever get the feeling that music majors, and par0cularly people who are going into jazz, are being cranked out much like business majors? That they are not really able to express themselves as jazz musicians?

JB: – Difficult question. I came up before the internet and what it took then to gather learning materials etc. etc. was a totally different experience. Students today have an incredible amount of material. It’s stunning really. However the level of that material is expanding and more advanced each year. So many great players are sharing what they know and it’s a different process in learning these days.

JBN: – What has given you the most sa0sfaction musically?

JB: – Playing with John Abercrombie. From the standpoint of listening and reacting off of each other I think it was the most challenging and rewarding time.

JBN: – From the musical and feeling point of view is there any difference between a old and great jazz mans and young?

JB: – One transcends the other I think. Other than technique the spirit of playing jazz and improvising remain universal across generations. Techniques are different with more virtuoso like playing these days but the sprit is the same.

JBN: – What advice would you give to aspiring musicians thinking of pursuing a career?

JB: – Stay commibed but most importantly remain humble.

JBN: – Do You like our questions?

JB: – Interesting questions as I think they assist in geting to the meat of who you are.

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Interview by Emmanuel Bolton

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