Matthew Shipp Speaks Out

Looking forward to an even busier year than usual recording and perfuming his music, New York-based pianist Matthew Shipp discusses his political, mystical and musical philosophies with downbeat’s Ron Hart. Along the way he explains the divergence between the sessions he records for a label like ESP-Disk, with discs featuring the likes of multi-instrumentalist Daniel Carter and Polish saxophonist Mat Walerian, and the multiple series of CDs he has recorded for Leo Records with Brazilian saxophonist Ivo Perelman. Comparing the societal ferment of today with that of the 1960s, he also muses about the varied political and social commitments of earlier Jazz icons such as saxophonists Archie Shepp, John Coltrane and Albert Ayler. The one thing he’s sure about in 2018 though, he says, is: “I don’t want Donald Trump anywhere near my music.”