In his unique and recognizable style, New York City pianist Matthew Shipp has performed and recorded vigorously from the late 1980s onward, creating music in which free jazz and modern classical intertwine. His approach to the piano reflects a concentrated blend of Thelonious Monk’s phrasing and the improvised explorations of Cecil Taylor. In 2018 he released a pair of new albums that marked his debut as a leader on ESP-Disk, where he joined forces with Albert Ayler and Don Cherry in the historic label’s longstanding efforts to champion creative music.
Shipp first became well known in the early 1990s as the pianist in the David S. Ware Quartet and Roscoe Mitchell’s Note Factory group. Soon he began leading his own dates, most often including Ware and bassist William Parker.