Thursday, Sep 08, 2022 8:00p -

The Lily Pad
1353 Cambridge St-Inman Sq
Cambridge, MA 02139

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Innovation, Meetup, Music, Nightlife

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Ken Vandermark, tenor, Bp clarinet. From New Haven, Joe Morris, guitar. Joe is as well-known internationally as any on the planet! Ken Vandermark—a McArthur Fellow “Genius” awardee, 1999—is also more than just a (great) guest musician, has been a leader and contributor to others for decades, grew up in Natick, Mass and part of the Boston Jazz scene then.


Contact: Alex @ Creative Music Series,[email protected], 617/800-7255





Morris’ impact on Vandermark’s creative path goes back to the mid-1980s, when he heard Joe perform in the Boston with his trio and his group Sweatshop on a regular basis. 


"One of the most profound improvisers at work in the U.S."

Will Montgomery, The Wire

"… the guitar revolutionary to pay attention to."


"… a guitarist whose sound is completely his own, oscillating between deadpan sweetness and dangerous, shrapnel-like caprice."


"… he sounds like no one else."



“The fire-breathing Ken Vandermark takes chances that others dare not pursue, risk ridicule in the hopes of finding a new path?”

Chicago Tribune

“Playing from skeletal scores that barely outlined themes, this quartet covered a more sweeping range of ideas than skeptics of the jazz avant-garde might have expected. Tender melodic passages alternated with tempestuous bursts of noise (or something close to it); rhythmically chaotic pieces were followed by good old-fashioned swing backbeats. Practically everything in the syntax of jazz was open for discussion – and re-examination”.

Vandermark—initially categorized as an energy player—has become increasingly taxonomical in his approach, like his heroes Anthony Braxton and British sax scientist John Butcher. Each of Vandermark’s improvisations was clearly discernible from the last, not merely a cavalcade of techniques or effects required to sustain momentum. Though tenor is terra firma for him, Vandermark is equally bold on baritone and clarinets. Down Beat

“Essentially I’m self-taught, so I didn’t have school chops. I can read music and things like that, but I’m not a harmonically based player in a conventional way at all. I don’t play music that deals with chord changes. I don’t really care for that. I don’t hear music that way, and I don’t function well in those environments. I think some people thought, ‘He can’t really play.'”

Joe Morris, Ken Vandermark, Luther Gray Rebus CD (Clean Feed) 2007

Ken Vandermark & Pandelis Karayorgis Foreground Music CD (OkkaDisk) 2007

https://vandermark1.bandcamp.com/album/like-rays trio with Joe / piano, ‘96

https://vandermark1.bandcamp.com/album/deep-telling trio with joe / drums

Joe Morris & Ken Vandermark Consequent Duos: series 2B 2019

https://kenvandermark.bandcamp.com/album/consequent-duos-series-2b, August 13th of 2019.



Born: Sep 13, 1955 in New Haven, CT., JOE MORRIS is a composer/improviser multi-instrumentalist who plays guitar, double bass, mandolin, banjo, banjouke electric bass and EVEN NOW, DRUMS.

He switched from trumpet to guitar at the age of fourteen and remained self-taught. His interest in jazz began two years later, after attending a John McLaughlin concert and listening to John ColtraneMiles Davis, and Pharoah Sanders recordings.[1]

Joe is an uncompromisingly original guitarist following in the tradition of other conceptual free jazz guitar innovators like Derek Bailey, Sonny Sharrock, Eugene Chadbourne, and James Ulmer. However, Morris has developed his own unique approach to guitar playing.

Morris spent his formative years in New Haven, Connecticut, where he taught himself the guitar and immersed himself in a variety of progressive musical styles. In 1975, he moved to Boston, where his unique approach was not initially accepted in the then-prevalent modal jazz scene. Yet, became an important part of the improv scene, including recording and producing concerts. Between 1986 and 1989 he lived in New York City.   

Upon moving to Connecticut in 2001 he created the Just Play series in New Haven (2003/2004), curated the premier season at Firehouse 12 (2005), was artistic director for Hartford Jazz Society Jazz in the Park series (2008), co-founded and curated the Improvisations series at Real Art Ways in Hartford (2011–2016), and founded and co-curated the Multiplex series at State House in New Haven (2019).

Joe picked up the upright bass in 2000 and is heard with it as frequently as his guitar! In 1981, Morris began his own label, Riti Records (named after an African single-stringed folk instrument), to document his prolific musical output. During the '90s he arguably became the most widely heralded free jazz guitarist in jazz, while recording with many avant-garde luminaries. Now faculty at New England Conservatory in the jazz and improvisation department.


He first gained widespread attention while with the NRG Ensemble from 1992 to 1996. He was once a member of Witches and Devils and the Flying Luttenbachers and has led or co-led several groups, including DKV Trio, Free Fall, Territory Band, CINC, Sonore, the Vandermark 5, the Free Music Ensemble, School Days, the Sound in Action Trio, Steam and Powerhouse Sound.

began during his college years in Montreal and then continued in Boston, where he led the trio Lombard Street

In 1996, he and writer John Corbett began organizing the Empty Bottle “Wednesday Night Jazz Series,” concerts that brought musicians from Chicago, North America, and Europe to audiences on a weekly basis for nearly a decade.

For the past 20 years, Ken Vandermark has been exploring and working to expand the possibilities of improvised and composed music in North America and Europe.

Since moving to Chicago from Boston in 1989, he's performed and recorded in a variety of contexts, and with many internationally renowned musicians.

Starting in April 2006, Ken has continued this work by co-directing the “Immediate Sound Series” with Mitch Cocanig at the Hideout. Since the fall of 2005 he has also been a member of Umbrella Music, a musician based group of organizers collaborating in Chicago.

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08/09/2022 20:00:00 08/09/2022 22:00:00 America/New_York Another dynamic duo: notable, leading-edge Jazz musicians, each a leader from Chicago & New Haven <p>Ken Vandermark, tenor, Bp clarinet. From <em>New Haven</em>, Joe Morris, guitar. Joe is as well-known internationally as any on the planet! Ken Vandermark—a McArthur Fellow “Genius” awardee, 199... The Lily Pad, Cambridge, MA 02139 false DD/MM/YYYY