john esposito
sunjump

Press

He is described as "...one of the strongest jazz pianists on the planet, an underrecognized giant" by Bruce Lee Gallanter - Downtown Music Gallery


Michael G. Nastos in the All Music Guide describes John Esposito as playing "..lucid, forward thinking, rhythmically propelling ideas...he succeeds on many real and important levels in creating some of the finest new modern jazz you may hear in the post Wynton Marsalis era...A bold conception and execution to be sure....from a brilliant player who deserves wider attention."


John Szwed in the Village Voice describes John's playing as having, "the lustrous clarity of a gamelan band using repetition so brilliantly that crystalline forms accrue from it."

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Jazz Podium - 9/09

John Esposito is one of the few pianists who, at the drop of a hat, can play a standard in the style of Willie “The Lion” Smith, Bud Powell, Chick Corea or Herbie Hancock. In English this attribute is called “versatile”, which is only partly rendered into German as “vielseitig” [many-sided] or “wendig” [flexible]. Born in 1953, John Esposito is in the bebop/hardbop tradition, but extends these in innovative ways. Trusted bebop harmonies are thus expanded with complex rhythmical schemes and metric modulations. Read More...

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Alain Drouot - 1/06

I read that your grandfather played with Paul Whiteman.

Yeah, I don't think it lasted very long. My father tells me that my grandfather was fired when he told Paul Whiteman that he wasn’t a musician but a shoemaker. My grandfather tended not to be politically astute. But I’ve found a photo, which is the only way I know he was a jazz musician. He was an eccentric figure, a classical violinist as far as I know. Read More...

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Peter Aaron/Roll Magazine - 12/08

You’d be hard pressed to find an artist more locally active than Catskill jazz pianist and composer John Esposito. In addition to playing in innumerable musical settings on any given weekend (chronicled below), Esposito somehow also finds the time to teach music at Bard College several times each week. And on top of that, the Brooklyn-born, Marlboro-raised keyboardist has recently kicked his Sunjump Records label into overdrive, self-releasing no less than five titles over the last two years—with a few more set to follow in the coming months. Read More...

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John Esposito Trio:

“Esposito and his trio have taken the jazz cover a step beyond, creating something unique and personal in the process, and seem to be having fun doing it.” M.R. Smith - Roll Magazine

“A bold conception and execution to be sure....from a brilliant player who deserves wider attention.” (Critic's Rating 3 1/2 stars) Michael G. Nastos - All Music Guide

Link to: Down Blue Marlin Road page and sound samples

“...one of the strongest jazz pianists on the planet, an under-recognized giant.” Bruce Lee Gallanter - Downtown Music Gallery

“a superior example of modernistic swing, Esposito making melodic fills shimmer in the midst of a sweeping hurricane of rhythm...” Jakob Baekgaard - allaboutjazz.com

Link to: Orisha page and sound samples

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John Esposito Quintet:

“...the egoless, ecstatic approach to small group Jazz...with great depth of feeling and boundless rhythmic energy...” Stuart Kremsky - Cadence Magazine

“..lucid, forward thinking, rhythmically propelling ideas...he succeeds on many real and important levels in creating some of the finest new modern jazz you may hear in the post Wynton Marsalis era...” Michael G. Nastos - All Music Guide

Link to: The Blue People page and sound samples

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John Esposito and A Book Of Five Rings:

“What is most striking is the support and interplay of the rhythm team, especially John's dynamic piano. On "Smitty", it is John's McCoy-like piano that is most astonishing and powerful, pushing the band higher and higher...The freer moments here are especially inspired and feature some fine soprano and bass clarinet swirling around one another intensely. The final piece, "...And His Spirit Ascended/Trane's Church" is an uplifting, epic-length, spiritual work which I find to be completely enchanting.” Bruce Lee Gallanter - Downtown Music Gallery

"Two Worlds" is a lengthy suite-like performance that alternates accordingly between sections of delicate interplay and cacophonous improvisation. The finale, another suite, "...and His Spirit Ascended/Trane's Church" builds slowly from a flute led meditation to a full out late period Coltrane ecstatic blowout. It's quite impressive and the musicians never lose focus during the near half our long dramatic improvisation. It unfolds like a ceremony and as such is quite an accomplishment.” Tim Niland - Jazz and Blues Blogspot

Link to: A Book Of Five Rings page and sound samples