Stephen Martin

High Plains

Price: € 19.95
Format: CD
Label: OA2 Records
UPC: 0805552219722
Catnr: OA2 22197
Release date: 04 March 2022
1 CD
✓ in stock
€ 19.95
OA2 Records
Catalogue number
OA2 22197
Release date
04 March 2022

"Another great talent that continues to make progress..."

Rootstime, 01-4-2022

About the album

Full of inspired, fiery conviction, saxophonist Stephen Martin channels the Kansas City jazz ecosystem that nurtured his professional and musical development on High Plains, his second album as a leader. Teaming with the virtuosic vibraphonist/pianist Peter Schlamb, bassist Ben Leifer and drummer David Hawkins, Martin tears through the Coltrane-inspired original, "The Void," and Frank Foster's "Simone," while Joe Henderson's "Punjab" lopes and swings conversationally. The classic "Easy Living" delivers a ballad’s restraint while seeming ready to unfold and burst at any moment. With two of his mentors close at hand - saxophonists Bobby Watson & Matt Otto as featured soloists, with Otto also producing the session - the atmosphere is loose, rollicking and familial, reflecting the shared sense of dialect, rhythm and purpose.
Voller inspiriertem, brennendem Enthusiasmus bringt der Saxophonist Stephen Martin auf High Plains, seinem zweiten Album als Leader, das Jazz-Ökosystem von Kansas City zum Klingen, das seine berufliche und musikalische Entwicklung gefördert hat. Zusammen mit dem virtuosen Vibraphonisten/Pianisten Peter Schlamb, dem Bassisten Ben Leifer und dem Schlagzeuger David Hawkins reißt Martin das von Coltrane inspirierte Original "The Void" und Frank Fosters "Simone" in die Höhe, während Joe Hendersons "Punjab" locker und unterhaltsam dahinplätschert. Der Klassiker "Easy Living" bietet die Zurückhaltung einer Ballade und scheint doch jeden Moment bereit zu sein, sich zu entfalten und zu explodieren. Mit zwei seiner Mentoren in der Nähe - dem Saxophonisten Bobby Watson und Matt Otto als Solisten und Otto als Produzenten - ist die Atmosphäre locker, ausgelassen und familiär und spiegelt den gemeinsamen Sinn für Dialekt, Rhythmus und Zielsetzung wider.


Stephen Martin has established himself as a uniquely gifted, and intensely spirited jazz saxophonist. Born in Champaign, IL and raised in St. Louis, MO, Martin began playing saxophone at age 10 and thrived in a community with a rich tradition in jazz. He has been recognized often in his career for his excellence in music, receiving the 2nd place prize for the 2018 Carinthian International Jazz Award in Austria, among many other acknowledgements.

​Martin studied under Grammy-Nominated jazz legend Bobby Watson, and world-renowned classical saxophonist Tim Timmons. He also often cites LA Jazz Collective founder/saxophonist Matt Otto, and St. Louis underground sax great Dave Stone as having had substantial influences on his development.

Martin has developed a personal sound on saxophone characterized by a relentless energy and adventurous ideas. The vibe of his music ranges widely from sensitive and inviting to thunderous and enraged - inspired by perhaps his deepest musical influence, John Coltrane. Martin's debut album, Vision, was released under the independent artist label SubtleStreet Records on July 27th, 2018. It debuted in the top 40 of the iTunes Jazz Charts, and as an Amazon best-seller in the first week of its release.
Currently based in Kansas City, Martin maintains a regular performance schedule and is on faculty at The Conservatory of Music & Dance at The University of Missouri - Kansas City (UMKC).


Another great talent that continues to make progress...
Rootstime, 01-4-2022

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