Music Outpost

Licensing Music on The Sonic Frontier

Jason Robinson - (USA)

The music of American reedist and composer Jason Robinson focuses on the relationship between improvisation, experimentalism and cultural identity. His current performance interests include the intersection of improvisation and composition, new electroacoustic processing and interaction enabled through software-based technologies, multisite networked performance and the relationship between popular music and experimentalism. He performs regularly as a soloist (acoustically and with electronics), with groups he co-leads (Cosmologic and the Cross Border Trio), as a leader of varying ensembles performing his original music and in a variety of collaborative contexts.

Fall 2010 marks a watershed in Robinson’s output as a leader. He releases three concurrent albums showcasing an enormous breadth of his creative work. These releases include The Two Faces of Janus (Cuneiform), featuring a New York-based ensemble that includes Drew Gress, Liberty Ellman, George Schuller, Marty Ehrlich and Rudresh Mahanthappa; Cerulean Landscape (Clean Feed), featuring the long time collaboration of Robinson and acclaimed pianist and composer Anthony Davis; and Cerberus Reigning (Accretions), the much anticipated second installment of the “Cerberus” trilogy, featuring Robinson’s remarkable solo electroacoustic music.

Always looking to extend jazz practices, he co-founded the hip-hop jazz combo Cannonball, and introduced saxophone to the roots reggae band Groundation, with whom he continues to tour. Already well established on the Bay Area jazz scene, Robinson experienced an epiphany when fellow saxophonist Marco Eneidi introduced him to the roiling music of avant-garde piano patriarch Cecil Taylor. Looking to develop improvisational and compositional ideas beyond straight-ahead jazz, he was drawn to UC San Diego by heavyweight faculty members like Anthony Davis and trombonist/composer George Lewis. 

Robinson has performed at festivals and prominent venues in the United States, Canada, Mexico, and Europe. He has performed or recorded with Peter Kowald, George Lewis, Anthony Davis, Marty Ehrlich, Eugene Chadbourne, Earl Howard, Emily Hay, Jeff Kaiser, Toots and the Maytals, Groundation, Elijah Emanuel and the Revelations, Bertram Turetzky, Mark Dresser, John Russell, Roger Turner, Gerry Hemingway, Kei Akagi, Mel Graves, Liberty Ellman, Babatunde Olatunji, Mel Martin, Marco Eneidi, Lisle Ellis, Raphe Malik, Mike Wofford, J.D. Parran, Dana Reason, David Borgo, Nathan Hubbard, Michael Dessen, Contemporary Jazz Orchestra (at Pearl's, San Francisco), the La Jolla Symphony, SONOR (UCSD), and the San Francisco Mime Troupe, among others. Robinson has published articles and reviews in Ethnomusicology, Critical Studies in Improvisation/ Études critiques en improvisation and Jazz Perspectives. He is an Assistant Professor of Music at Amherst College and holds a Ph.D. in Music from the University of California, San Diego.

Deeply connected to the creative music scenes of California, Robinson’s forged strong creative bonds on both coasts. As an academic, he explores the shifting relationships between cultural identity and improvised and popular musical forms. His work as a performer is equally expansive. Weaned on psychedelic rock by his father, veteran Northern California guitarist and songwriter Amos Robinson, he gravitated to the music of R&B pioneer Louis Jordan, Jimi Hendrix and Charlie Parker as an aspiring musician, and jumped into the Sacramento jazz scene as a teenager. After a year at USC, he transferred to Sonoma State, studying jazz and philosophy with bassist/composer Mel Graves.

Jason Robinson - "Stratum 3 (Excerpt #1)"- full track= 6:06

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Jason Robinson - "Tiresian Symmetry (Excerpt #1)"- full track= 10:58

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Jason Robinson - "Radiate (Excerpt #1)"- full track= 10:03

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Jason Robinson - "Saros (Excerpt #1)"- full track= 8:35

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Jason Robinson - "Elbow Grease Introduction (Excerpt #1)"- full track= 3:44

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Jason Robinson - "Elbow Grease (Excerpt #1)"- full track= 5:44

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Jason Robinson - "Corduroy (Excerpt #1)"- full track= 6:39

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Jason Robinson - "Cosmolographie (Excerpt #1)"- full track= 10:00

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