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.  

Eric Ryan Anderson

One of today's leaders in modern jazz fusion returns to the Northwest for shows in Seattle and Portland next week. Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah brings his bent trumpet to Nectar Lounge Tuesday night, before opening the Portland Jazz Festival at the Star Theater Feb. 20. That show is already sold out.

Abe Beeson

Best known for his nearly two decades with the modern jazz fusion group Kneebody, Ben Wendel explored the endless possibilities of the duet format with 12 videos released in 2015 featuring 12 different collaborators from across the wide jazz spectrum. I spoke to Wendel recently about his career, his many young fans, and this diverse recent project, The Seasons, just released in CD and vinyl formats as performed by Wendel in a quintet setting.

Parker Miles Blohm

Whether you prefer planes, trains or automobiles, a trip to Portland is always a good idea. That's especially true when the Rose City presents its annual jazz festival, and I'm excited to highlight a few modern jazz concerts that New Cool fans will love. KNKX will make the trip with a group of listeners for the first weekend, find more information on that amazing package here.

Brandon Jernigan photography (TheBeautifulSounds.com)

Tom Misch describes himself first and foremost as a beat maker. His musical development began on the humble fiddle, next to the guitar, which he plays prominently in live performances. Misch's 2018 debut album Geography blends both his digital and acoustic expertise, with impressive results.

The New Cool: Favorites of 2018

Jan 4, 2019
Abe Beeson

You've already seen plenty of top-albums lists for the year now past. Tune in to The New Cool this Saturday for my look back with two hours of favorites from 2018. There's plenty of diversity — from piano trios to synthesizers and laptops, retrospective updates and all-star collectives, too. Make a date to spend Saturday afternoon (3-5 p.m.) with some of the most exciting new music of the past 12 months!

With kind permission of Amy & Delvon.

Delvon Lamarr and his wife/manager Amy Novo are packing up the Hammond organ and moving to Austin, Texas, to begin a new direction on their musical journey. After a sparkling live performance in the KNKX studios, the Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio celebrates New Year's Eve at the Triple Door before the big move in a couple of weeks. I asked them to write a fond farewell note, a "love letter" to their friends and fans in the Northwest. They were only too happy to oblige.

Used with kind permission of Amy & Delvon.

Delvon Lamarr and his wife/manager Amy Novo are packing up the Hammond organ and moving to Austin, Texas, to begin a new stage in their musical journey. After a sparkling live performance in the KNKX studios, the Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio celebrates New Year's Eve at the Triple Door before packing and preparing for the move. I asked them to write a fond farewell note, a "love letter" to their friends and fans in the Northwest. They were only too happy to oblige.

The New Cool: Get Grooving for Christmas

Dec 21, 2018
Album cover from Fog City Records, San Francisco.

Merry Christmas to you, New Cool listener! Santa has dropped off a few modern jazz Christmas tunes for The New Cool this week, so tune in and enjoy as you scramble to finish all your pre-Christmas shopping, wrapping, cooking and (hopefully) relaxing.

Michael Goude - Vibe Vision Seattle

A pair of Seattle-grown modern jazz outfits return to the KNKX studios for live sessions next week. One group is marking a departure from the Northwest, the other is celebrating a holiday return.

The New Cool: Shabaka Hutchings Revisited

Dec 7, 2018
Cover photo by Sergio Aparicio (Okobé)

One of London's hottest young jazz musicians, Shabaka Hutchings isn't big on self-promotion. He's appeared on around 50 releases over the past decade, but only one album under his own name - Shabaka and the Ancestors from 2016. He continues the pattern on a wild new album from the trio 1000 Kings.

The New Cool: Stanley Clarke's New Bass Grooves

Nov 30, 2018
Photo by Raj Naik, with kind permission of the artist.

The three pioneers of the electric bass in jazz have been making great records recently. You've been hearing the latest from Marcus Miller and Victor Wooten on KNKX, and on this week's New Cool I've got the new album from Stanley Clarke. It's a ferocious young band, filled with plenty of Clarke's trademark low end grooves.

The New Cool: Jesse Fischer Flips Jazz

Nov 16, 2018
Album design by Roland leFox.

Multi-instrumentalist Jesse Fischer is also a songwriter, producer, engineer and musical anthropologist. OK, I added that last one to his bio, but his new album Flipped II seamlessly mixes cultures across decades and generations.

The New Cool: Monika Herzig's SHEroes

Nov 9, 2018
Used with kind permission of the artist.

Though the journey to equality isn't over, women in jazz have been steadily gaining attention in recent years. Just last weekend, Maria Schneider (with the SRJO), Dawn Clement, Tia Fuller, and Jane Bunnett and her all-female latin band Maqueque were the star attractions in Seattle.  With her new release SHEroes, pianist and composer Monika Herzig's all-female band adds another important milestone of great music from still-underappreciated ladies in jazz.

Boo!! A New Cool Halloween Jazz Preview

Oct 26, 2018
Abe Beeson

Autumn in the Seattle area always brings fantastic live music, these days even weeknights are filled with world class live jazz around Puget Sound. So then, a Wednesday night Halloween is due to be full of spooky, funky jazz fun. Rake in the candy for the kids before dark, then get out for some musical treats of your own.

The New Cool: Return of Mark Guiliana

Oct 12, 2018
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.

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