All-Star Octet Pays Tribute to Thomas Chapin

Friday, January 30th at 7pm
Michael Musillami Spirits Octet
Spirits Rebellious: Celebrating Thomas Chapin's Brazilian Songbook
Walker Auditorium at The Hotchkiss School
11 Interlaken Road in Lakeville, CT
Admission is free
Directions are available at
For venue information, please call (860) 435-3652
Learn more about Michael Musillami at

Michael Musillami, guitar; Tom Christensen, saxophones and English horn; Art Baron, trombone; Tom Beckham, vibes and marimba; Peter Madsen, piano; Cameron Brown, bass; Michael Sarin, drums; Satoshi Takeishi, percussion; George Schuller, co-producer

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On Friday, January 30th at 7pm, guitarist/composer Michael Musillami's all-star Spirits Octet will world premiere newly-commissioned arrangements of selections from the late multi-reedist/composer Thomas Chapin's Brazilian songbook at the Hotchkiss School in Lakeville, Connecticut. The concert is being funded by a grant from the prestigious boarding school, where Musillami serves as Director of Guitar Studies and an instructor of guitar, electric bass, and music theory. Two days later, on February 1st, the Spirits Octet will record Chapin's music in New York for a forthcoming Spring 2004 release on Musillami's Playscape Recordings label.

Developed over the past year, the arrangements, created by Musillami and Playscape veterans trombonist Art Baron and multi-reedist Tom Christensen, pay tribute to the influential Chapin, who died from leukemia at the age of 40 in 1998. The octet's performance will be preceded by a one-hour art exhibition beginning at 6pm, featuring works created by artists Brad Faus and Cleuci de Oliveria in response to the music of Chapin and Brazilian composer Hermeto Pascoal, accompanied by the music of Da'Koda, a duo featuring bassist Ed Schuller and saxophonist Nicole Kampgen.

Credited with "producing some of today's finest music within a developing group format" in a recent AllAboutJazz-New York feature article, Musillami is quickly becoming one of the most vital figures on the modern jazz scene. His desire to perform and produce a wide range of creative music, as a performer, group leader and founder/executive producer of Playscape Recordings, has earned him extensive critical praise. JazzTimes writer Ron Wynn called his music "honest, frequently surprising and consistently exciting," and the All Music Guide's Glenn Astarita wrote, "count on Musillami to offer the willing listener something a bit different than the tried and true." His most recent recording, Those Times (Playscape), was released in December.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Michael Musillami Spirits Octet
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