Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Catching Up With Bruce Forman for some "Formanism!"

New Release 06/19/2012

Tell us about the origin of the new trio recording Formanism and how do you think staying away from the format for roughly twelve years impacted the end result?

B.F. - "Other than the obvious (twelve years of playing) I would say my branching out into other forms and listening to what my peers have been doing had an impact. In some cases, I wanted to make sure I didn't repeat what I thought as their mistakes or lack of creativity, and in other cases was inspired to look at it differently." 

When people think guitar trio names like Grant Green and Jimmy Raney always pop up; for me this is as solid and as swinging as any guitar trio I've heard. There is an obvious chemistry in the trio and like you stated there is no where to run and hide. How much does the chemistry or on going musical conversation within the trio push you and when you made this record did you have any other artists maybe floating around in the back of your head as inspiration or is this just a trio that really understands how to swing?

B.F. - "For me, jazz music is conversational. therefore, who i am playing with makes all the difference. not just what they play, but how they play and what they sound like all inform my musical choices. You will probably note that the music is contextual, everything relates to something before it and also moves within a strategic point of view. I not only respond to the others, but also what I have just played too. In terms of other artists, while i might craft an arrangement in their style, I do not think about them while playing, even though they all have inspired me, ghosts like that make it impossible to be in the moment. it is my trio, and while the other guys have strongly developed musical personalities, they made the commitment to my vision, and i like to swing..."

3.) You also teach...What is the most personally satisfying aspect of that portion of your career and what may have been the most important lesson you learned from some of your students?

B.F. - "I do teach, I really love it. If you want to learn about something, try to teach it. my approach to teaching is a bit different than many people, I consider it the mentoring model. I patterned it after how i learned, which was by playing with great players. I consider myself a peer with my students, just one who is more experienced. I expect them to bring the same amount of dedication and commitment that i bring, and i am willing to help them through their mistakes, and encourage them to make them, it is the only way they will learn in in a meaningful way. students have enriched me by challenging me to find ways to explain and clarify approaches, ideas that distill the essence of concepts and make them more usable." 

I've always said paralysis by analysis is killing jazz. It is either works or doesn't. That being said; What is your take on critics and do you think sometimes they may make the music seem more inaccessible than what it really is or sometimes seems to be?

B.F - "I wish we had more critics, more people writing about the music and reading about it. ultimately, it is always best if the information is clear and correct, after that an opinion is just that, an opinion. i appreciate people who have them, are committed to them, and stick by them...even if i think they are wrong...killing jazz? jazz can't be killed, there are too many of us who love it and play it, we won't go away, we'll always be here."

Finally...Your musical inspirations be they guitar or otherwise and last disc you purchased?

B.F. - "Inspirations...too many to list and i would end up waking up in the middle of the night, cursing myself for leaving someone out...sorry about that. The last CDs i bought (i can go to my itunes and find out):
Paul Desmond-first place again
Elis Regina-essa muhler"

Special Thanks to Bruce Forman for his time and Michael Bloom of Michael Bloom Media Relations for his help in making this happen! Check out Bruce Forman's web site at

A You Tube Taste of Bruce Forman!