Jon Hassell


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"Miles Davis and Jon Hassell are both trumpet players who have transcended the instrument's inherent limitations and now use it as flexibly, as expressively and as intimately as a great singer uses his voice. They are both visionary composers who use their knowledge of American traditions and the musics of the world to create vivid landscapes that seem to palpitate with a life of their own. They are both musicians with serious reputations who have nevertheless crossed the boundaries that separate 'art' and 'popular' music."

"Hassell has long been admired for his work with Brian Eno, the Peters Gabriel and Sellars and the Kronos Quartet...If there were any justice, Hassell's 10 majestic albums would already be broadcast on their own radio and cable stations 24 hours a day: they're the secret sound track of our public and private lives."

"Face it, it's all been said about Hassell before, but perhaps this, at least, is worth restating: Jon Hassell's ideas and techniques have so thoroughly permeated lo- and hi-brow contemporary electronic music, albeit often in a third or fourth hand way...that it's difficult to think what contemporary music would sound like without his influence. I repeat: there's categorically no doubt that Hassell has had as an important effect on contemporary music as Miles Davis or Jimi Hendrix or James Brown or the Velvet Underground."

"Jon Hassell is one of the world's most innovative musicians and one of today's most influential composers. His music has established a genre that goes beyond the notions of jazz, neo-classicism, new music or new age. Jon Hassell's concept of Fourth World Music transcends the so-called 'primitive' and the so-called 'futurist' by seamlessly uniting traditional rhythmic and melodic concepts with recombinant aesthetics made possible by the creations of high technology."

"Work of quite extraordinary beauty...This pan-cultural music swirls and rises like smoke...Hassell blends his experiences in such a way that the components—African drumming, Indian microtonality, Balinese tranquility—make a new palette while forfeiting none of the individual colors."

"Extraordinary, otherworldly music..."

"Fourth World music is the soundtrack to an imaginary future culture based on the mingling of ancient and modern, Western sophistication and Third World primitivism. Its music for nowhere / nowhen, a place that doesn't actually exist yet."

"Best New Genre / Uncategorizable Artist"

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