The New Cool | KNKX

The New Cool

Saturday 3PM-5PM
  • Hosted by Abe Beeson

The New Cool — 21st century jazz inspired and informed by the sounds of today: hip-hop, & funk, Electronic music and punk rock — the future of jazz has arrived.

The New Cool is hosted by Abe Beeson and produced by KNKX Public Radio in Seattle, Wash.  

Ways to Connect

The New Cool: Return of Mark Guiliana

1 hour ago
Deneka Peniston

Among the parade of jazz stars in the Northwest for the Earshot Jazz Festival (through November 4th), one of The New Cool's favorite drummer's makes a return to Seattle on November 6th. The excitement is already building, and KNKX is giving away tickets!

The New Cool: London's Sons of Kemet in Seattle

Oct 5, 2018
London quartet Sons of Kemet at Barboza in Seattle Sunday night!
Abe Beeson

It's been a busy week at KNKX, and thanks to listeners like you, the Fall fund drive has concluded with our incredibly ambitious $600,000 goal reached this past Thursday. Thank you! Now on with the show...

London's modern jazz scene continues to impress from across the pond, and Sunday night one of that city's top saxmen brings his quartet to Seattle for a show you shouldn't miss.

Photo by Rene Huemer for Robert Walter.

Keys player Robert Walter has been a master of funky grooves with the Greyboy Allstars, his own bands, and as a guest in various settings. With his new release, Spacesuit, Walter is breaking free from the Earth's gravity and exploring the outer limits of electronic keyboard possibilities.

Clayton Lancaster

The Oakland based Negative Press Project are built from a variety of musical talents, some from the California Jazz Conservatory, but others employing skills honed in the realms of pop, rock, global folk and classical music. Together, the octet delivers a "jazz adjacent" sound that allows for countless creative possibilities. NPP will be exploring some of those possibilities at Cafe Racer in Seattle Sunday night, with the Racer Sessions jam following.

The New Cool: Cool Earshot Festival Preview

Aug 24, 2018
Abe Beeson

Our friends at Earshot have another amazing jazz festival coming up October 7th and continuing through November 4th. I'm particularly excited about the shows featuring some of the coolest modern musicians in the world, and on this week's New Cool, I'll preview a half dozen of my most eagerly anticipated concerts.

The New Cool: A Taste of Shake Stew

Aug 17, 2018
Andreas Waldscheutz Photography

The New Cool's explorations of modern jazz in Europe moves to Austria this week with a spotlight on bassist Lukas Kranzelbinder's septet Shake Stew. Their new album Rise and Rise Again is a wild trip in itself.

The New Cool: Alex Monfort's Modern Swing

Aug 10, 2018
Photo by Arthur Wollenweber

French pianist Alex Monfort honors his jazz heroes on the new trio release Introspection. Bill Evans, Keith Jarrett, Chick Corea are all on the list of legends who inspire him, but Monfort makes his own statements here. This is modern jazz piano that brings the legacy of jazz into the 21st Century.

The New Cool: Heat Beating Live Preview

Jul 27, 2018
It's too hot for record deliveries left in the sun!
Abe Beeson

As temperatures rise around the Pacific Northwest, there are some extra cool modern jazz shows coming up soon. I'll preview of a few of them, and also play cool new releases from some of today's hottest musicians.

The New Cool: Corduroy Is Back in Fashion

Jul 20, 2018

Formed by English twins Scott and Ben Addison in the early 90s, the iconic acid jazz group Corduroy is back with their first new album in nearly two decades. It's a triumphant return to the top of a crop of exciting modern jazz groups in the UK. Don't miss The Return of the Fabric Four on the New Cool this Saturday!

The New Cool: Producers Out Front

Jul 13, 2018
How can anyone know what all these knobs do?
Abe Beeson

Music producers have traditionally been behind the scenes, but this week's New Cool brings new releases from three multi-talented knob-twisters and fader-riders getting a lot of attention recently. Now to be sure, these three are multi-instrumentalists. But, like Ellington, Basie and all the big band leaders, they have their minds focused on the sound of the group first.

The New Cool: Holiday Weekend Funk Party

Jul 6, 2018
Abe Beeson

With the Independence Day parties landing smack in the middle of this week, the New Cool helps you keep the barbecue hot through the weekend with two hours of funky modern jazz. It's a mix to get you moving Saturday afternoon, from the funk origins of New Orleans to Africa-via-London, from cutting edge dance floor experiments to good ol' greasy organ trios, KNKX has what you need.

The New Cool: Duende Libre's American Drift

Jun 22, 2018
Abe Beeson

Seattle-based trio Duende Libre is releasing its new album Drift with a party at the Rainier Arts Center on Friday, June 29th. Band leader and keys player Alex Chadsey sat down to talk with me about the trio's latest release, and their continuing exploration of musical influences from around the globe.

The New Cool: Loads Of Live Action In Seattle

Jun 15, 2018
Tom Collins

Summer officially arrives June 21st, and the busy concert season is kicking into high gear for fans of modern jazz in Seattle. Along with popular international jazz festivals in Victoria and Vancouver, BC beginning next weekend, there are some amazing modern jazz shows happening around the Emerald City in the next few days. Do your stretches, put your phone on mute, and try to catch 'em all!

The New Cool: trioKAIT's New Adventure

Jun 8, 2018
Peter Figen Photography, Los Angeles

A listener recently asked about a pianist they heard on KNKX, who "sounded like Lyle Mays. Thanks!" A little research led me to L.A. based pianist Kait Dunton's cover of "Under the Bridge" by Red Hot Chili Peppers. While she may remind you of the great keys player from the Pat Metheny Group, the TrioKAIT do things their own way.

The New Cool: The Expansions' Funky Fusion

Jun 1, 2018
Charlie Moreton

Unleashing their debut album nearly five years after their first single, the London-based quartet The Expansions lay down the jazz fusion grooves that will have you reaching for bellbottoms and wide collars. The sounds of the funky 70s are back on the six-song effort Murmuration, and on The New Cool this week, you'll hear a tune that could've been a lost track from Herbie Hancock and the Headhunters.

The New Cool Stage at Folklife

May 25, 2018
Abe Beeson

The KNKX modern jazz show The New Cool returns to host a stage at the Northwest Folklife Festival on Saturday, presenting three of our favorite forward-thinking groups from our own backyard. Yours truly, Abe Beeson, will be on stage to introduce Tacoma group 322, recent studio session guests Bad News Botanists, and the powerful horns of the Ten Man Brass Band.

The New Cool: Busy Weekend In Ballard

May 18, 2018
Parker Miles Blohm

Not much of a post this week, I've dedicated my writing to preview the Ballard Jazz Festival. I hope to see you in the clubs Saturday night!

The New Cool: Seattle-Portland Groovin' at Tula's

May 11, 2018
Used with kind permission of the costumed.

Seattle's mighty Hammond organ and drums combo of Joe Doria and Tarik Abouzied are friends and collaborators in McTuff, Happy Orchestra and other various line-ups. Their new project includes an icon of Portland's jazz scene, guitarist Dan Balmer, with a new recording and a live show at Tula's Friday, May 18th.

Abe Beeson / KNKX

I'm just back from a fantastic trip to the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. There are far too many moments from the festival grounds to mention here, but on Sunday night I found an allstar group of New Cool favorites on the edge of the French Quarter.

The New Cool: Creating Blue Lab Beats

Apr 27, 2018
Photo by Ruthe Zuntz, used with permission from Native Instruments

The creation of beats probably has its origins in the early days of hip hop when DJs would sample and blend the drum breaks from their favorite records. Today, the process is more akin to a musician with an instrument, and though the beats sound familiar, they're as fresh and original as an Art Blakey solo in the hands of talented duo Blue Lab Beats.

The New Cool: Return Of Kamasi Washington

Apr 20, 2018
B+ (Brian Cross) mochilla.com/bplus

He sure has changed the idea of what a "full length" record is. Kamasi Washington follows his debut triple-album The Epic from 2015 with his double-LP follow up Heaven and Earth this Summer, and The New Cool previews an "epic" song from the new release this Saturday on KNKX.

The New Cool: Live Coolness In the PNW

Apr 13, 2018
Used with permission of the artist - facebook.com/lionelloueke

April is Jazz Appreciation Month, and there are countless ways to celebrate around Puget Sound. Listen to jazz on KNKX, buy some jazz for Record Store Day, and take advantage of the plentiful opportunities to see and hear live jazz. This week on the New Cool we'll preview a few modern jazz shows in the coming weeks.

Abe Beeson

The Boston-based trio Soulive are a busy bunch, though in most recent years you'll find guitarist Eric Krasno, keys player Neal Evans and drummer Alan Evans playing with their own groups and as valuable sidemen. So the 5-song EP Cinematics, Vol 1 is like a desert oasis for thirsty fans of the original trio.

Support The New Cool on KNKX!

Mar 23, 2018
Abe Beeson

The Spring fund drive has arrived, and with it comes your opportunity to support The New Cool, your home for modern jazz on KNKX. Today's show will feature long time favorites like Snarky Puppy, The Bad Plus and The New Mastersounds.

The New Cool: Modern Jazz in the PNW

Mar 17, 2018
Michael Goude, Vibe Vision Seattle

The Pacific Northwest has a long musical tradition going back to vaudeville acts during the Gold Rush, and this corner of the country became home to early jazz, garage rock pioneers, the so-called "grunge" movement and many less-recognized but incredibly talented musicians. In the 2nd decade of the 21st Century, the Puget Sound region is filled with creative jazz musicians pushing their music past easily categorized genres. You'll hear a group of our Northwest neighbors in every set this week on The New Cool.

The New Cool: Syrinx Effect's Dynamic Duo

Mar 9, 2018
Daniel Sheehan, A Beautiful Day Photography

After two well-received shorter EP releases, the Seattle-Missoula connection of reed player Kate Olson and trombonist Naomi Moon Siegel - Syrinx Effect - are back with their first full length album, A Sky You Could Strike a Match On. To say it's striking would be an understatement, but a clever one.

The New Cool: Snarky Puppy Charms Seattle

Mar 2, 2018
Photo by Freudian Slurp guitarist Ian Hughes.

The entry to Seattle's Moore Theater is surrounded by scaffolding as the old building's facelift continues, inside the hall Snarky Puppy was doing a bit of construction of their own. They're building a new kind of instrumental music, and they've already built a fan base who love what they hear.

The New Cool: Lance Ferguson's Hopeful Menagerie

Feb 23, 2018
Used with kind permission of the artist. @_lanceferguson_

Influenced by the vast history of jazz, and in particular the cosmic, spiritual music of the 70s featured on record labels like Strata-East and Oakland's Black Jazz Records, the new album from multi-instrumentalist and producer Lance Ferguson's Menagerie will fit comfortably in your record collection alongside new releases from Kamasi Washington and Snarky Puppy as well as classics from Pharoah Sanders and late-career John Coltrane.

The New Cool: MAST Takes Monk to Space

Feb 16, 2018
Hand painted by Tokio Aoyama.

Multi-instrumentalist Tim Conley, performing as MAST, has just released a new collection of Thelonious Monk tunes. "Another one?" I hear you saying. Well, this collection of Monk tunes, simply titled Thelonious Sphere Monk, takes the jazz giant's music to wild electronic destinations. Thankfully, to a Monk fan like me, it really works.

Portland Jazz Festival Preview

Feb 12, 2018
Justin Steyer / KNKX

Now in its 15th year, the Portland Jazz Festival begins this week, running February 15th through the 25th. Always a great excuse to visit the Rose City, this year's jazz festival is wide-ranging and features jazz greats, Northwest favorites, and a number of tributes from all-star groups.

Pages